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Cogs 14A Midterm 1 Study Guide

I.What is Science?
a)Set of activities that attempt to explain some natural phenomenon
b) Yields a body of scientific knowledge
c)Systematic application of prediction, experimentation, observation,
measurement,evaluation and communication
d) In the 20thcentury, shift to a probabilistic universe, less deterministic shift to
systematic methodology and statistical technique. gave rise to scientific method
i. Good, reliable research applied in any domain
ii. Tests became the basis for modern regression analysis of variance
II. Epistemology the study of the nature of knowledge and how its acquired
III. Methods of Knowing
a) Obstinacy traditional knowledge is best
i. Pros: predictable, safe and worry free
ii. Cons: change can be beneficial, no room for improvement
b) Intuition folk belief and superstition, absence of reasoning, highly objective and
based on emotion
i.Pros: self-reinforcing
ii.Cons: susceptible to confirmation bias
c)Authority blind faith in people of status (ex: media)
i. Pros: efficient, social cohesion (military/religion)
ii. Cons: authority figures can be wrong, difficult to compare competing figures
d) Rational-Induction logical thinking and theorizing, armchair philosophy(work with
facts to formulate general hypotheses)
i. Pros: productive in forming hypothesis
ii. Cons: assumptions can be false which makes conclusions
unjustified,susceptible to subjectivity bias because facts were chosen to support
aspecific claim
e) Descriptive Method categorizing nature, collect specimens and directly observe
features of nature
i. Pros: high ecological validity(phenomena are carefully observed in natural
ii. Cons: no immediate attempt to understand cause and effect relationships(uses
correlation instead)
f) Experimental understanding through controlled manipulation of events, explains
observed phenomena through prediction, looks for cause + effect relationships
i. Independent variable what is being manipulated
ii. Dependent variable what is being measured
iii. Hypothesis stated prior, makes prediction about what will occur
iv. Confound hidden & uncontrolled variable that make effect or even skew
IV.Scientific Method
a)Describe and Identify Phenomenon in physical world
b) Explain/Predict casual relationships between identified phenomena
c)Control and use relationships productively