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Essay 1 - Paper - From Inductivism to the...

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From Inductivism to the Hypothetico-Deductive Method Essay #1 PHL – 101 – Essay February 21, 2008 Submitted by: John Luff Submitted to: Dr. Mark Holowchak Philosophy Wilkes University, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
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Essay #1 John Luff From Inductivism to The Hypothetico-Deductive Method Dr. Mark Holowchak Many great things compliment another; for the Hypothetico-Deductive Method it is inductivism. Inductivism of course started with Aristotle, a world-renown philosopher of his day (384-322 B.C.E.). It was his work on inductivism that through out centuries attracted the attention of notable philosophers such as Francis Bacon, John Herschel, and William Whewell. Despite the strong backing to inductivism it, like many things in life, came into question. Some of inductivism’s own supporters such as Herschel and Whewell, as well as notable philosopher/ scientist Sir Isaac Newton began to believe there was another method to forming a hypothesis, a deductive method. The method became known as the Hypothetico-Deductive Method. As this method formed it brought forth philosophical questions such as: Can a hypothesis be proven or simply confirmed? Disproved, disconfirmed? It was the idea behind these questions that eventually formulated a theory within the Hypothetico-Deductive Method known as the Duhem- Quine Theory. Inductivism is a view that states a hypothesis is formulated from past observations and that a hypothesis can confirmed if, based on observations, it has not yet been disconfirmed. This is the first known “systematic account of the generation of scientific hypotheses” (Holowchak, 97) and the person responsible for such an account was Aristotle. Aristotle was the privileged son of a royal court physician, who after studying medicine was given the opportunity to study philosophy under another renowned philosopher of his era, Plato at Plato’s Academy. Despite leaving the academy and Macedonia after Plato’s death, Aristotle was able to return to Macedonia, tutor Alexander the Great, and start an academy of his own. (Waggoner, 1). Such actions allowed Aristotle to gain respect by peers and ensured that many of his philosophical theory’s survived through turbulent times, the theory of inductivism being amongst them. The survival of the theory of inductivism allowed a man by the name of Francis Bacon whose work 2
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Essay #1 John Luff From Inductivism to The Hypothetico-Deductive Method Dr. Mark Holowchak with inductivism would become the initial building block of the methodologies behind inductivism. In his work, Bacon took the basic theory behind Aristotle’s thoughts on inductivism, which was that all scientific hypotheses were founded on factual observations, and then added to the theory a method of exclusion (Hol., 98). The method simply states that in inductivism little details that do not agree with the initial hypothesis must be eliminated during observations and when confirming the hypothesis. The seemingly steady theory behind inductivism and the formation of a hypothesis was
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Essay 1 - Paper - From Inductivism to the...

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