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Unit of study_

HPSC3108: Hist and Phil of the Physical Sciences

This unit of study deals with some central problems in the history and philosophy of the natural sciences. It covers two areas in detail, and several others in less depth. The two main topics are (1) evidence in science, especially how evidence is understood within a Bayesian model, and (2) the representation of nature with scientific models and other theoretical tools. We will also look at the role of truth as a scientific goal, links between scientific theories and policy decisions, and the formation and role of consensus within science. Upon completion of the unit, students will have developed a range of skills that will allow them to explore the natural sciences with a more critical attitude.

Code HPSC3108
Academic unit History and Philosophy of Science Academic Operations
Credit points 6
HPSC1X01 or HPSC2X01

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Understand a leading model of how evidence works in science (the Bayesian model) and how it relates to a variety of other problems and topics.
  • LO2. understand current views on the nature of scientific models, and how they represent the world
  • LO3. demonstrate an understanding of some of the most pressing issues in contemporary philosophy of science.