SOAN Day 3.docx

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University of Guelph
Sociology and Anthropology
SOAN 2120
Scott Schau

SOAN- Friday, January 11, 2013 What is Science? Science IS: - A set of logical & empirical methods (e.g., drawings inferences or deductions from hypotheses) - Systematic observation, experimentation, rigorous methodology - Replication - Impersonal/ objective - Epistomology: the science of knowing Pseudoscience IS: - A set of ideas based on theories put forth as scientific when they are not - Based on authority or sacred text, myths, legends - Can’t be tested; illogical reasoning - Often supported by selective use of anecdotes and intuition The Foundations of Social Science The TWO pillars of science 1. LOGIC, and 2. OBSERVATION Three major aspects of social science are: - Theory; - Data collection; and - Data analysis Some Dialectics of Social Research - Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches - Nomothetic and Idiographic Explanations - Inductive and Deductive Theory Evidence - Quantitative Evidence o Objective o Verifiable o Controlled Observations o Precise Communication - Example: I’m told that every morning the sun comes out, go out and check everyday if the pattern continues - Qualitative Evidence o Explanations and descriptions o Painstaking analysis of documents o Lengthy participation in a group - Very difficult to do Qualitative evidence. You need to come up with theories, a logic to explain and describe these things. Induction and Deduction: Linking theory and research Deduction: Testing theories or testing hypothesis - Theory is used to generate ideas about behaviour  research produces evidence for testing theories Induction: generating hypothesis - Observations/ empirical data used to construct theory  derive theories from data The scientific process involves an alternation of deduction and induction Induction & Deduction Hypothesis or Premise: Typically a General Statement about the Relationship between Two Variables To To Deduction
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