print copy
Methodology of Science An Introduction

Methodology of Science An Introduction

Ochrana, František

subjects: sociology

paperback, 170 pp., 1. edition
translation: Key, Petra
published: june 2012
ISBN: 978-80-246-1982-8
recommended price: 180 czk



This publication covers the essential problems of the methodology of science. The methodology of science is understood to mean primarily a theory of scientific methods and techniques; the use of scientific methods in scientific research and in the construction of scientific theories. It examines in detail the axiomatic-deductive and inductive approaches in constructing a scientific theory. It analyzes the role of explanation and prediction in scientific research and the role of narration in social sciences. Using the comparative method, it compares scientific explanation, interpretative exposition in social sciences and defines the points of departure of the integrative approach to the examination of social phenomena. The publication also contains an index of essential terms, subject index and bibliography. The book is a useful study tool for students from faculties other than faculty of arts, particularly from the faculty of social sciences, as well as for all those who want to become acquainted with the crucial problems of philosophy and methodology of science.

table of contents


1. Defining Essential Concepts. Selecting Methodology and Research Methods, and Setting Research Goals
1.1 Defining the Concepts of "Methodology of Science," "Scientific Method" and "Principles of Scientific Work"
1.2 Selecting Methodology and Setting Research Goals
1.3 Selecting Scientific Procedures and Research Methods
1.4 Defining Concepts in Scientific Work

2. Science, Its Origins and Historical Types. Problem of Methodology and Methods in the Context of the Development of Science
2.1 The Cultural Epoch and Historical Types of Science
2.2 The Age of Science in Classical Antiquity
2.3 The Age of Medieval Science
2.4 The Age of Modern Science
2.5 The Age of Post-modern Science

3. Logical Foundations of the Construction of Scientific Theories
3.1 Axiomatic Deductive Approach to the Construction of a Scientific Theory
3.2 Inductive Approach to the Construction of a Scientific Theory. Limitations for the Use of Induction
3.3 The Role of Verification in Scientific Research
3.4 The Role of Falsification in Scientific Investigation. The Problem of Testing Hypotheses

4. Normative and Non-normative Cognition of Social Reality
4.1 Non-normative Theories
4.2 Normative Theories

5. Explanation
5.1 Scientific Explanation by Deductive Inference
5.2 Explanation Based on a "Scientific Law" (by Subsumption Under a "Scientific Law")
5.3 Explanation Based on an Idealized "Scientific Law"
5.4 The Problem of Universality in Social and Economic Laws
5.5 Explanation by Subsumption Under a Theory
5.6 Types of Explanation Based on the Dependence Between the Explanandum and the Explanans
5.6.1 Non-probabilistic Types of Explanation
5.6.2 Explanation Based on the Idea of "Probability"
5.6.3 Explanation Based on Two Concepts of Probability According to Rudolf Carnap A Scientist's Procedure in the Scientific Process of Confirming a Hypothesis Carnap's Conception of Two Concepts of Probability and Its Importance for Scientific Research

6. Prediction
6.1 Defining the Concept of "Future" as Viewed by the Methodology of Science
6.2 The Problem of Determinism in Relation to Predicting the Future
6.3 Non-Cartesian Rationalism and the Problem of Prediction
6.4 The Problem of the Relation of Induction and Deduction

7. Narrative Model in Social Sciences
7.1 Dilthey's Conception of Human Sciences - A Starting Point for a Turn Away from Explanation to the Narrative Model
7.2 Rickert and Windelband's Conception of "Human Sciences," or "Idiographic Sciences"
7.3 Problematization of the Nomological Conception of a Historical Fact
7.4 The Distinction Between the Nomological and Narrative Explanations of Social Phenomena. A Historical Explanation
7.5 Logical Tools for the Construction of a Story. A Role of a Historian in a Narrative
7.6 Epistemology and Phenomenology of Narrative History

8. The Contradictory Nature of Explanation and Interpretation Explanation. Points of Departure of the Integrative Approach to Investigating Social Phenomena
8.1 Atomistic, Holistic and Integrative Approaches to the Investigation of Social Phenomena
8.2 Explanatory Conception of Cause, Interpretative Conception of Meaning and Their Criticism through the Integrative Approach
8.3 Dichotomy of Objectivism and Relativism in the Social Phenomena Investigation and Their Criticism in the Integrative Approach


Glossary of Essential Terms
Subject index