09 January 2011

On the trustworthiness of research--again.

Sorry to keep coming back to this yet again, but there does seem to be a surge of interest in the topic.


  1. Yet another philosopher working in fringe science accepting the impossibility of producing completely reliable results, and lauding Lehrer's ill-informed tripe, written as an exercise in false humility for an audience of philosophers and theologians. How about an example from real science?

    The standards of evidence in real science are so much higher than in "social sciences" that it is an insult to science to call them by the same name. http://pgdtllsreflectivejournal.blogspot.com/2011/01/standards-of-evidence-revisited.html

  2. You may well be right, Sean, in not granting the label "science" to this soft stuff. However, the education community (among others, including medics) nevertheless has the problem of how to legitimate the knowledge it shares, even if it can never aspire to the reliability of hard science.

  3. I have an idea - First, let's see if there is any knowledge as a scientist would understand it.

    If there is not, let's abandon any pretence of scientific underpinning, and teach teaching as a craft without intellectual support.

    If there is, let's build on it using the methods and standards of evidence of real science, or the sort of heuristics we use in engineering.

    The input of the Liberal Arts and Humanities have made pedagogy worse than useless to anyone hoping to underpin their practice with rationality.


Comments welcome, but I am afraid I have had to turn moderation back on, because of inappropriate use. Even so, I shall process them as soon as I can.