Science and Epistemology I
Science as a style of thinking; illogical reasoning; over-generalization; selective (or inaccurate) observation, confirmation bias, resistance to change.

Believe me, you love bureaucracy.

Believe me, you love science.

Describe the four common errors in everyday reasoning.
Define social science and identify its limitations.
Identify the four goals for social research in practice.
Define valid knowledge and indicate the three components of validity.

Bias and Errors Exercise

Selective or Inaccurate Observation
Illogical Reasoning
Resistance to Change

How do we combat each of these?

Social science research methods reduce the likelihood of overgeneralization by using systematic procedures for selecting individuals or groups to study so that the study subjects are representative of the individuals or groups to which we want to generalize.

To avoid illogical reasoning, social researchers use explicit criteria for identifying causes and for determining whether these criteria are met in a particular instance.
Social science methods can reduce the risk of selective or inaccurate observation by requiring that we measure and sample phenomena systematically.

Scientific methods lessen the tendency to answer questions about the social world from ego-based commitments, excessive devotion to tradition, or unquestioning respect for authority. Social scientists insist, Show us the evidence!

How Well Have We Done Our Research?
Measurement validity
Causal validity