Science Methodology (SCM)

Course description Science Methodology (SCM)
Year: 2017-2018
Catalog number: 4603SCMTH
Teacher(s):
  • Dr. V. Gijsbers
  • Prof. dr. M. Ubbink
Language: English
Blackboard: Yes
EC: 4
Level: 400
Period: Semester 2, Block III
  • Yes Elective choice
  • Yes Contractonderwijs
  • Yes Exchange
  • Yes Study Abroad
  • No Evening course
  • Yes A la Carte
  • No Honours Class

Admission requirements

The course is meant for MSc and PhD students in any of the natural sciences who are performing scientific research projects. This course is obligatory for all MSc students Chemistry and all MSc students Life Science and Technology

Description

The basic principles and ideas underlying the modern scientific enterprise (focussed on natural sciences) are taught. The aim is to let the student contemplate concepts like ‘truth’, ‘experiments’, ‘models’, ‘confirmation/falsification’ and make the student aware of the limitations of the ability to make objective observations. Also current practices, like the mechanisms of research funding, the ‘publish or perish’ dogma and the importance of impact as well as integrity and ethics in science will be discussed.​-

At the end of the course students:
• have a basic knowledge of the philosophy of science
• have a basic understanding of modern scientific practices
• can critically discuss aspects of the scientific enterprise orally as well as in writing
• can critically discuss the relation of science and society orally as well as in writing

Course Contents

During the BSc and MSc education students learn lots of scientific facts, but do they know how science works? In this course the basic principles of the methodology used in the natural sciences are taught. The aim is to let the student contemplate on concepts like ‘truth’, ‘experiments’, ‘models’, ‘confirmation/falsification’ and make the student aware of the limitations of the ability to make objective observations. Also current practices, like the mechanisms of research funding, ‘publish or perish’ dogma and the importance of impact as well as integrity and ethics in science will be discussed.
The course is meant for MSc and PhD students in any of the natural sciences who are performing scientific research projects.

Mode of instruction

Lectures, group discussions and essay writing and evaluation

Language

English

Timetable

Schedule information can be found on the website of the programmes.

Literature

Papers from the literature
Slides presented during the courses

Examination

Essay of 2500 words (100%)

Languages