Journal Analysis

Topics: Epistemology, Scientific method, Science Pages: 5 (1567 words) Published: January 14, 2013
Journal Article Analysis
University of Phoenix
Douglas Gurney, MBA
Constructing Meaning PHL717
December 17, 2012
Dr. Kathy Kelly

Journal Article Analysis
Current views of the world, desires, dreams, goals, and the demands placed upon society are constantly transformed by present epistemological beliefs. Schommer-Aikens and Hutter (2002) investigated the relationship between an individuals’ belief about knowledge, learning or epistemological beliefs and how this relates to average conversational issues (Schommer-Aikens , Hutter, 2002). Using a study group of 174 adults ranging in age from 17 to 71, Schommer-Aikens and Hutter (2002) posed questions assessing beliefs of knowledge and the speed control of learning. Feldman addressed how assumptions become scientific knowledge by stating “Sometimes we know things by reasoning or inference. When we know some facts and see that those facts support some further fact, we can come to know that further fact. Scientific knowledge, for example, seems to arise from inferences from observational data” (Feldman, 2003, p. 3). Understanding how assumptions move into scientific knowledge it becomes apparent how these assumptions are qualified in research. The authors used regression analysis to quantify the assumptions of the participants as they relate to knowledge, learning, multiple perspectives, and ultimately the development of epistemological beliefs. This analysis will further identify philosophical assumptions underlying the research; explain the practical significance of these assumptions and their effect on its applicability to other authors and post-positive thinkers. Philosophical Assumptions Underlying the Research

Feldman (2003) stated that epistemology, the theory of knowledge is a philosophy that looks into the questions about knowledge and rational. Epistemologist`s tend to focus or concentrate on questions of principal aspects involving knowledge and how those beliefs regulate coherent belief. Those within the field are less concerned about the validity of knowledge or coherent belief, be it correct or incorrect but focus more on causes (Feldman, 2003, p. 1). To that extent Schommer-Aikens and Hutter (2002) conducted a survey of 174 participants, including 120 women and 54 men. The ages of the participants ranged from 17 to 71 years of age and included various personal and educational backgrounds. Through the Schommer epistemological questioner participants, including chemical engineers, clerks, homemakers, factory workers, pharmacists, and teachers of both genders. These participants were asked a number of questions that incorporated religious, educational, societal and personal beliefs. Questions were ranked in a likert- type scale ranging from strongly disagrees to strongly agree (Schommer-Aiker, Hutter, 2002). Philosophical Assumptions

Schommer-Aikens and Hutter state “The results coming from epistemological research suggest that individual`s beliefs about the nature of knowledge and learning are linked to their comprehension, metacomprehension, interpretation of information and persistence in working on difficult academic tasks” (Schommer-Aikens, Hutter, 2002, p. 6). The authors contend that individuals who believe knowledge is isolated into segmented bits and not taken as a sum total perform more poorly in the compression of mathematical, physiological, and medical textbooks (Schommer-Aikens, Hutter, 2002). This statement confirms that knowledge or epistemological commitments are a collection of data and understanding and not segmented or isolated bits of information. The assumption is those who tend to segregate knowledge and who do not attain a higher degree of education have difficulty in their own epistemological commitments. This is further evident in the writings of Quine and Kuhn as these authors beleive "science is a continuation of common-sense" (Delanty & Strydom, 2003, p. 22). According to these authors common, everyday decisions made...

References: Delanty, G. & Strydom, P. (Eds). (2003). Philosophies of Social Science: The Classic and Contemporary readings. Philadelphia, Pa: Mcgraw-Hill.
Feldman, R. (2003). Epistemology. Prentice Hall. The University of Phoenix.
Kuhn, T. (2012). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago, Il. University of Chicago Press .
Schommer-Aikins, M., & Hutter, R. (2002). Epistemological Beliefs and Thinking About Everyday Controversial Issues. Journal Of Psychology, 136(1), 5.
Johnson, P. & Duberley, J. (2000). Understanding Management Research: An Introduction to Epistemology. Thousand Oaks CA. Sage Publishing. Prentice Hall.
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