HS4091 Chapter 1 - Judgement and Science

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Western University
Health Sciences
Health Sciences 2711A/B
Aleksandra Zecevic

Judgement and Science - Chapter 1 January-30-14 9:28 AM ``The good doctor, whatever else he may be must at least be some sort of scientist.`` In thinking about this statement, it is useful to divide work of good doctors into two different roles - Research role and clinical role. Science • The word ``science`` has multiple meanings? Science has different ways. → It is a method According to Downie and Mcnaughton, science is a method with 5 keys parts- Observation – Observations are puzzles that need to be solved. Hypothesis - Puzzle solving begins by devising one more possible solution (explanations of the observations). Testing or Experimentation – A hypothesis is test in terms of its fit with subsequent observations in the same circumstances. • A satisfactory fit confirm the hypothesis • An unsatisfactory fit denies the hypothesis. Generalization – a test (that is, experiment) is designed to show that hypothesis applies to ALL in the same circumstances. • Historical explanations are not scientific hypothesis. Reductivism – generalization focuses on small on one or small number of a large set potential features of an observation. • Scientific Generalizations These are the principles and laws in which we are schooled Forms of generalization • Natural history A conception that particular kinds of attributes tend to go together. e.g., a certain form of treatment tends to be effective with particular kind of patient. • Development Uniformities A conception that change follows a particular pattern over time. e.g., a disease follow a particular progression. • Numeric Constants A conception that a particular quantities serve as benchmarks. e.g., 37 C is normal body temperature. • Functional Relationships A conception of mathematical relationship attributes. e.g., there are 9 calories in 1 gram of fat. • Statistical Relationships A conception of probabilistic relationship between attributes. e.g., a high cholesterol diet increases the risk of heart disease. According to Downie and Macnaughton, • Each of these generalizations contributes to our systematic knowledge of the world. • Generalization is achieved by making a few features focal in our attention, leaving many their features peripheral in attention. → It is a kind of evidence Downie and Macnaughton describe evidence as information that is relevant to a particular hypothesis and gives weight to a particular conclusion. Two process by which information becomes evidence – • Inductive Reasoning (detective model) Collect facts which are relevant to the problem -> (Broad Relevance) Weigh individual facts Construct a hypothesis
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