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NATURE OF SCIENCE

AND TECHNOLOGY
CHAPTER 3
Is science universally good?
Are technologies neutral?
Science and technology have liberated human
beings from the drudgery and backwardness of the
pre-scientific world.
It have provided us thee knowledge, tools and
techniques to be in control of our world, and
exploits to its fullest our potential as rational
human beings.
SCIENCE VIS-A-VIS OTHER
FORMS OF KNOWING
Basic Tenets of Pre-Scientific worldview

1. Anthropocentrism - human beings are at the centre of the universe in both the
physical and spiritual sense; the concept of the universe was based on human
imagination.
2. Geocentrism – the earth is at the center of this universe, with the sun, the planets, and
the stars revolving around the earth.
3. All beings on earth have their assigned places.
4. Human beings are above all other beings. They are special creations of God, though
lower in rank than angels. Each human beings has a Specific place ordained by God.
5. Angels, spirits, and other supernatural beings exist in a hierarchy, with
each possessing magical and extraordinary powers.
6. The holy is different from the secular, and religion has a strong influence
on the minds of human beings.
7. Study of the natural world is not that important. Qualities are given
more emphasis than quantities, and explanations of phenomena are
based on their causes as well as their effects.
In 1600, Copernicus challenged geocentrism. In the
16th until the 17th century, the Reformation
effectively shattered the unity and power of the
church.
Luther contradicted the organic power
of the Catholic Church and gave
emphasis to the individual and her faith.
In the 18th century, the Enlightenment further
fueled the focus on the individual, this time giving
emphasis on the individual and reason.
The Philosophy of Deism pointed out that God
created human beings with reason, which gives them
the capacity to discover and invent
As communication and technology advanced, and
modern economies were established, allegiances to
feudal lords and the Church shifted to nationalism
or loyalty to the “Nation.”

Science became a secular, rational force


distinct from religion.
Leads to the development of the Scientific method
as powerful, and for most, the only valid, mode of
discovering truth and knowledge.
The Scientific Method
What is scientific method?
Scientific worldview

The development of the scientific method was attended by the emergence of


a scientific worldview that replaced the pre-scientific one . This worldview
possessed four characteristics:
• Mathematical
• Analytical
• Experimental
• Totalitarian
Scientific worldview

• Scientific worldview is said to be mathematical in the sense that is puts


value to on quantification as the foundation for analysis.
• Another implication of this is in the changes in the manner concepts are
operationalized. For example, the concept of “time” is no longer
interpreted in terms of subjective perceptions of duration, such as “quick”
or “long”, but in terms of exact and precise measurements such as hour,
minute and seconds.
Scientific worldview

• The scientific worldview is also characterized by an adherence to analytical


methods, wherein “wholes” can be understood by studying its component
and interrelated “parts.” For example, the human body, being a collection
of different systems, each composed further of different organs, can be
understood by studying each of these systems and the different organs
comprising them.
Scientific worldview

• Another important characteristic of the scientific worldview is its


experimental nature. Knowledge, as well as answers to questions are
derived through practical experiments, where observations can be made,
not through reflection and discussions alone.
Scientific worldview

• The scientific worldviews believes in the totalitarian nature of science.


That is, science has no limits in its scope in the sense that its coverage
continues to enlarge in the course of its development. Domains which
were previously not subjects of scientific inquiry are now of scientific
investigation.
Perform activity 3-1

• Can you think of an example that can illustrate the


totalitarian nature of science? As a clue, think of
something that was previously not an object of
scientific inquiry but which has become one
recently.
There are many examples that we can think of.
Let us offer you the following.
• Dreams used to be explained as paranormal phenomena, but dreams are
increasingly becoming objects of scientific investigations, particularly in the
field of clinical psychology.
• Developments in medical science have led to the expansion of its domains
seen through the increasing specialization of the medical field and the
discovery of new strains of viruses and bacteria and the explanation of the
causes of illnesses.
So what is then the scientific
method?
Scientific Method
• Is a systematic process of inquiry that is comprised of the
following component activities
• Identifying/defining the problem
• Formulation of a hypothesis
• Testing the hypothesis or experimentation
• conclusions

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