THE EFFECT OF SCIENTIFIC EVOLUTION ON PHYSICS AS AN INDEPENDENT FIELD OF STUDY
The early period of the seventeenth century is known as the “scientific revolution” for the drastic changes evidenced approach to science . The word “revolution” connotes a period of turmoil and social upheaval where ideas about the world change severely and a completely new era of academic thought is ushered in. This term, therefore, describes quite accurately what took place in the scientific community following the sixteenth century. During the scientific revolution, medieval scientific philosophy was abandoned in favor of the new methods proposed by Bacon, Galileo, Descartes, and Newton; the importance of experimentation to the scientific method was reaffirmed; the importance of God to science was for the most part invalidated, and the pursuit of science itself (rather than philosophy) gained validity on its own terms. The change to the medieval idea of science occurred for four reasons (1) Seventeenth century scientists and philosophers were able to collaborate with members of the mathematical and astronomical communities to effect advances in all fields; (2) Scientists realized the inadequacy of medieval experimental methods for their work and so felt the need to devise new methods (some of which we use today); (3)Aacademics had access to a legacy of European, Greek, and Middle Eastern scientific philosophy they could use as a starting point (either by disproving or building on the theorems); (4) Groups like the British Royal Society helped validate science as a field by providing an outlet for the publication of scientists’ work. Assessment of the state of science before the scientific revolution, examination of the differences in the experimental methods utilized by different “scientists” during the seventeenth century, and exploration into how advances made during the scientific revolution affected the scientific method used in science today will provide...
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