Chapter 2 Summary 05/05/2013
This summary is shorter as most material from this chapter was covered in lecture 1 and 2.
The process of theory construction involves the interaction of both deductive and inductive logic in the
1. We use induction to translate what we have observed into assumptions
2. We employ deduction to derive predictions
3. We test these predictions against new observations
4. We revise our assumptions to make them consistent with the results of our observations
Then we rinse and repeat in order to make our theory stronger and a more useful tool for understanding
Question: Can we devise a set of procedures for using our senses to gather information that will allow
us to judge the presence or absence or magnitude in the real world of the thing the concept refers?
If yes, then: it is said that the concept has empirical referents
Directly or indirectly observable
Concepts must have empirical referents and must be precise
Must refer to one and only one set of properties of a phenomenon
E.g. when we speak of the distribution of wealth is this a part of describing a nations political system as
democratic/authoritarian or is the nature of the political system determined exclusively by other factors?
Theoretical import: when a concept is related to enough other concepts in the theory that it plays an
essential role in the explanation of observed events
Covariational relationships: indicate that when two or more concepts tend to change together. As one
increases (decreases) the other increases (decreases) ▯ tells us nothing about the creati