Chapter 6: Developing Hypotheses

Links to a carefully curated collection of Youtube videos provide a host of additional sourcs for you to develop your ability to use R software in an engaging and accessible manner.

Video 6.1: ‘Karl Popper’s falsification’

Question 1: What was Karl Popper’s key argument about scientific hypotheses?

Answer: That they were falsifiable; that they could be tested through observation.

Question 2: Why did Popper not like Marxism?

Answer: Because Marxists claimed their theories were a ‘scientific’ analysis of history, but Marxists theories and explanations for the course of history could not be tested and thus falsified. Therefore, they were not scientific.


Video 6.2: ‘Karl Popper, science, and pseudoscience: crash course philosophy #8’

Question 1: How did Karl Popper distinguish between the science Einstein was conducting and the science Freud was conducting?

Answer: Popper argued that Einstein was conducting ‘real science’ where he was developing theories and hypotheses that could be tested and falsified. Freud, on the other hand, was developing theories and hypotheses are could not be tested and that his ‘science’ was only designed to confirm his beliefs and hypotheses (thus, ‘pseudo-science’).

Question 2: What are the three key elements of modern scientific hypothesis or theory?

Answer: That they are testable, refutable, and falsifiable.