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Understanding and Using Scientific Evidence: How to Critically Evaluate Data / Edition 1

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Overview

The basic understanding which underlies scientific evidence - ideas such as the structure of experiments, causality, repeatability, validity and reliability- is not straightforward. But these ideas are needed to judge evidence in school science, in physics or chemistry or biology or psychology, in undergraduate science, and in understanding everyday issues to do with science.

It is essential to be able to be critical of scientific evidence. The authors clearly set out the principles of investigation so that the reader will be confident in questioning the experts, making an informed choice or arriving at in informed opinion. The book is intended for a wide range of readers including those who want to:

} collect their own evidence

} be able to question and judge a wide range of science-based issues that we come across in the press or other media in everyday life

} teach others how to understand evidence.

This book has been developed from the authors' work with first year undergraduates in a combined science course and in primary teacher training for science specialists. It is suitable for students training as primary science specialists, and also for 'A' level and first-year undergraduates in science and science-related subjects.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780761970842
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 10/9/2003
  • Series: One-Off Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 198
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard Gott holds a BSc (Leeds), a PhD degree (Leicester) in Physics, and an MA in Education (Leeds). He has (co) authored 12 academic and professional books, some 18 research reports, and written over 60 journal articles and book chapters.

His research has focused on practical work and the use of evidence in school science where he has collaborated with his colleague Ros Roberts in a number of research studies, see for example http://www.dur.ac.uk/richard.gott/Evidence/cofev.htm .

Prof Gott taught on the MA (Ed) and Ed.D courses and supervises a number of doctoral research students across a range of areas of interest.

He was Head of Department from 2000 to 2005.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
The Design of a Simple Investigation
Different Types of Variables
Other, and More Complex, Designs
Making the Best Use of Tables and Graphs
What do the Data Mean?
Are the Measurements Good Enough?
Samples and Populations
Lots of Measurements
Data as Part of Evidence
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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2004

    Man who should know

    Richard Gott is a professor at Princeton University. While the subject of scientific validation is a fascinating subject to me and this book is great as far as that is concerned, it suprises me coming from this author. Scientific validation is about proof, review from peers and reproduction of scientific method by those peers to reach validation and acceptance in the wider scientific community. Richard Gott has a 30 year+ record of zany but original thoughts into quantum mechanics and time travel. I have thought in the past, mostly based on his previous books, that he is a man more based on theory, all be it fascinating ones, than on practice. I was wrong. This text enlightens me to another side of him. It not only talks of method and validity in science but exposes him to be a man of more well rounded science than I originally thought. Great work Mr Gott.

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