Philosophy of science: respond to any two questions in about 2 pages


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Due Wednesday, February 14

Respond to any two questions in about 2 pages each.

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1. Briefly explain the main idea behind Thomas Kuhn’s notion of paradigm shift. What are the stages involved, as Kuhn understands it, before a paradigm shift can occur in science?

2. Briefly explain how Imre Lakatos’ view of the science and pseudoscience differs from that of Popper’s. Be sure to highlight at least two main difference that Lakatos points out in his essay.

3. Briefly outline the main ideas of Francis Bacon’s inductive method. How does he argue that minding the four Idols of the Mind helps one to overcome errors in our reasoning?

4. Briefly describe the central tenets of what has come to be known as the Hume’s problem of induction. Do you agree or disagree with his criticism? Give two carefully thought through reasons for your position.

5. Briefly describe the central idea behind Popper’s falsifiability criterion. How does this criterion help us distinguish between science and pseudoscience? Explain with an example.


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