Are the social Sciences Really Inferior?

Topics: Science, Social sciences, Mathematics Pages: 7 (2163 words) Published: March 24, 2003
Are the social Sciences Really Inferior?

Prologue

It is a common notion that the social sciences, as it were, are inferior to the natural sciences when it comes to being a "science". Some sects in the society even questions the credibility of the claim of the social sciences that they are indeed a science; several faction of the society views social science as a whole as being inferior to the natural science, a number of them even does not consider social sciences as a science at all. The article at hand, tackles this dispute by pointing out several points of comparison between the two bodies of knowledge so as to achieve clarity and a definitive answer regarding the matter at hand. The following are the points that the author of the article pointed out: invariability of observations, objectivity of observations and explanations, verifiability of hypothesis, exactness of findings, measurability of phenomena, constancy of numerical relationships, predictability of future events, distance from everyday experience, and standards of admission and requirements. The points presented by the author of the selection will be pondered upon in this paper in such a manner that clarity and clearness may be achieved. In this respect, the author of this paper took liberty of dividing the work into several headings, just like what the original writer did, and after each heading the authors own explanation of the matter at hand will be presented. In this manner, the author hopes to arrive at a scholarly paper that can ascertain the matter at hand.

Invariability of observations

To make things simpler, the notion that the author of the said article wants to establish under this heading is that the natural sciences imposes a sort of superiority over the social sciences. This is because of the fact that the natural sciences are invariant when it comes to its object of study, hence its object of study may recur. While in the case of the social sciences, since the nature of society is to change, its object of study is incorporated with variability. However, the author pointed out that there is a social science that can be considered as invariable, and that is in the field of economics. In addition to what already has been stated, the author posited the position that the only difference in the variability between the social sciences and the natural sciences is that of degree, that is if we are talking about the real world.

Taking a closer look at the matter at hand, we may safely state that there is indeed a difference between the two sciences when it comes to the variability of their object of study, this is due to the number of relevant factors to be taken into account for explaining or predicting events occurring in the real world.

Objectivity of observations and explanations

It is a common notion that the natural sciences will do everything in its power to at least reduce the level of subjectivity in their field, if not to completely annihilate it. On the contrary, the society views the social sciences as imbued with subjectivity and thrive on it. Well, this is true if we look at both sciences at a glance; however, taking a second look at it we may realize that even the natural sciences may have a little touch of subjectivity instilled in it. This assertion is based on the following factors: the scientist, who conducts the experiments and other vital stuff in the natural sciences, ethical problems, and selection of a project in the choice of the subject for investigation.

The scientist

The scientist, who conducts different sorts of experiments and tests in the laboratory, in one way or the other, is still imbued with subjectivity no matter how hard he try and no matter how hard they contest it to be. This is for the reason that the individuality of a scientist cannot be eliminated no matter what because he is still a human being in the first place.

Ethical problems

Ethical problems may influence the subject of...
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