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Observations, Experiments, and Arguments for Epistemic Superiority in Scientific Methodology

Boyd, Nora Mills and Matthiessen, Dana (2023) Observations, Experiments, and Arguments for Epistemic Superiority in Scientific Methodology. [Preprint]

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Abstract

This paper argues against general claims for the epistemic superiority of experiment over observation. It does so by dissociating the benefits traditionally attributed to experiment from physical manipulation. In place of manipulation, we argue that other features of research methods do confer epistemic advantages in comparison to methods in which they are diminished. These features better track the epistemic successes and failures of scientific research, cross-cut the observation/experiment distinction, and nevertheless explain why manipulative experiments are successful when they are.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Boyd, Nora Millsnboyd@siena.edu0000-0002-3641-8682
Matthiessen, Danadam228@pitt.edu
Additional Information: Forthcoming in Philosophy of Science
Keywords: observation, experiment, manipulation, intervention, signal and noise, backgrounds
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
General Issues > Evidence
General Issues > Experimentation
General Issues > Rhetoric of Science
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Depositing User: Nora Boyd
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2023 14:25
Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 14:25
Item ID: 22359
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Confirmation/Induction
General Issues > Evidence
General Issues > Experimentation
General Issues > Rhetoric of Science
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Date: 1 August 2023
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/22359

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