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Scientific Method

by: Savannah Mahalak

Scientific Method

Marketplace > Georgia Southern University > > Scientific Method
Savannah Mahalak

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About this Document

Talks about scientific method and different things that come along with it
Introduction to Anthropology
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Savannah Mahalak on Wednesday September 7, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to at Georgia Southern University taught by in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views.


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Date Created: 09/07/16
Thursday, September 8, y Scientific Method What to do: ­ Ask a research question ­ Generate hypothesis or possible explanations for phenomena  ­ Test hypothesis ­ Accept or reject hypothesis Induction vs. Deduction ­ Induction is used to generate hypothesis, to move from the specific to the general ­ Deduction is used to test hypothesis, to move from general to specific * Hypothesis is built on not just made out of thin air Theory ­ A general idea that has been well supported by scientific testing (such as evolutionary theory) ­ Explains patterns we observe What can science study? ­ Both visible and invisible forces and processes  ­ It can also study past events, which of course cannot be seen in action (e.g evolution) ­ Above all, it must be testable Preconception ­ Science is always constrained… • by what we already know • by what we still don’t know 1 Thursday, September 8, y • by available technology used  to gather and test data • by influential social and cultural trends Hoaxes of the 20th Century:  ­ Piltdown Man ­ Tasaday “Stone Age” people Piltdown Man ­ Fossils were found in southern England in the 1910s ­ Thought to be the “missing link” between apes and humans ­ “Hoax of the Century” ­ Nationalism and a bit of racism were at work Tasaday “Stone Age” people ­ “Discovered” in the 1970s in the rainforest of the Philippines ­ Their clothing and tools (and the fact they lived in caves) suggested an ancient life  way ­ Not really living in caves, got paid to pose like this by Elizalde Scientific Racism ­ An unfortunate by product of some “sciences” even to this day ­ Very closely related to ethnocentrism (e.g. “civilized people” and “Modern Humans”  must be European in origin) Belief Systems  ­ Belief systems are key to understanding behavior and culture ­ Cannot be tested or disproved Examples:  2 Thursday, September 8, y ­ Religions ­ Philosophies ­ Ethics ­ Morals  ­ Laws How is Anthropology scientific?  ­ Not all behaviors can be explained by science ­ Culture not a “thing”, it varies greatly across space and time ­ It is impossible for science to always be objective Science vs. Belief Systems  ­ They are not a odds, although conflicts do arise ­ Societies need both ­ Neither answers all the questions How is anthropology humanistic? ­ Many anthropologists see humanism, rather then science, as the major focus of  anthropology, since anthropology helps us to better understand humanity as a whole ­ Anthropology shows us the fundamental connection of all humanity  Pseudoscience  ­ A set of ideas based on theories put forth as scientific when they are not scientific ­ Examples:  ­ Bigfoot ­ Weeping statues 3 Thursday, September 8, y ­ Crop circles ­ Psychic Phenomena (e.g, palmistry, etc) 4


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