Wednesday, March 28, 2012


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As a means of testing the validity of knowledge, Popper proposed a set of rules of scientific methodology which he termed the Hypothetico-Deductive Model of science. Hypothetico means based on hypotheses and for Popper, the research process revolves around the ability to develop and clearly state hypotheses that can be tested in some way through social research.

Deduction (or to give it its proper name, deductive logic) is a way of making authoritative statements (proofs) about what is not known by a thorough analysis of what is known. The ability to make deductive statements is a very powerful tool since it is the basis for drawing logical conclusions about specific events from general events.

In sociological terms, a model is a small-scale representation of something (such as, in this instance, a research process) that helps us to clarify the relationship between the things involved by describing the relationship between them in simplified terms. In this case, Poppers model suggests the various steps we need to follow in order to do research and, as such, helps us to organize the research process.

To put this in simpler terms, you will probably be familiar with fictional detectives such as Sherlock Holmes. He solved a crime by systematically investigating a case, collecting and analyzing facts and, on the basis of these facts, naming the person who committed the crime. This is an example of deduction because Holmes was able to authoritatively state (or prove) something specific (the identity of a murderer, for example) that was not initially known on the basis of his general observations about things that were initially known (the facts surrounding the case).


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The classical or traditional model of how science operates scientists are assumed to begin with a theory, deduce a hypothesis from the theory and then gather evidence to test the hypothesis. If the hypothesis is confirmed the theory is assumed to be correct or useful. HYPOTHESIS is a testable statement (i.e., it may be true or false) of a specific relationship between or among variables. In the classic model of science this testable statement is deduced from a theory.

Many natural science investigations follow the hypothetico-deductive model. For example, suppose a student concerned about the influence of land cover on water quality wants to estimate the area covered by open space, parking lots, and buildings within a watershed. To solve this problem, the student can observe randomly-selected locations on an aerial photograph. By comparing the aerial photograph with a U.S. Geological Survey quadrangle map, the student can form hypotheses about the kinds of land cover at these locations. To test these hypotheses, the student can use a global positioning system (GPS) receiver to find each of these locations in the real world, travel to them, and observe actual land cover. Through this problem-solving process, the student can rapidly estimate the amount of land cover in a large watershed without expending great effort.


This is a typical study process and theory, which make the exact convention of knowledge as discovery. Alternative-paradigm is not trying to test the relationship between action and rewards. Theorists do not believe at our basic rewards hypothesis extremely. They may discover our thought appealing and even practical, however they would state that this is just one of numerous ways to be conscious of a persons behavior, and they would find out our cut of rewards to a check on a scale absurd. They might also say that your statement that rewards reason behavior is arbitrary and that the link could just as validly be stated in the contradictory path Action is in use deliberately to produce rewards. Robyn Penman has outlined five tenets of the alternative paradigm, which are very important to know 1. Action is voluntary. . Knowledge is created socially. . Theories are historical. 4. Theories “affect” the reality they are covering. 5. Theories are value laden.

In the end, we have to compare the traditional hypothetico-deductive model of inquiry with Alternative-paradigm. In the hypothetico-deductive model, inquiry is seen as theory-laden because it is emphasized that observations are important (or even possible) only when theories and hypotheses are tested. The interrogative approach to inquiry has a much wider use for theories. Theories help us to find fruitful questions, which are the basis for new information.

One thing we have to argue is that to the idea that one has to choose between, for example, discovery and justification, or between individual activities and social interaction, or between product and process. However, these apprehensions give also an opportunity to understand dynamic processes of inquiry. Philosophers have quite often left, or even defined, the area of discovery as something that is not agreeable to theoretical study. However, that there is no need for philosophers to avoid looking into discovery, and philosophical models and concepts can be applied fruitfully to help understand also secrets of discovery.

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