Understanding “Understanding” in Public Understanding of Science

Public Understanding of Science 28:1-16 (2017)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This study examines the conflation of terms such as “knowledge” and “understanding” in peer-reviewed literature, and tests the hypothesis that little current research clearly distinguishes between importantly distinct epistemic states. Two sets of data are presented from papers published in the journal Public Understanding of Science. In the first set, the digital text analysis tool, Voyant, is used to analyze all papers published in 2014 for the use of epistemic success terms. In the second set of data, all papers published in Public Understanding of Science from 2010–2015 are systematically analyzed to identify instances in which epistemic states are empirically measured. The results indicate that epistemic success terms are inconsistently defined, and that measurement of understanding, in particular, is rarely achieved in public understanding of science studies. We suggest that more diligent attention to measuring understanding, as opposed to mere knowledge, will increase efficacy of scientific outreach and communication efforts.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

  • This entry has no external links. Add one.
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

The Omniscienter: Beauty and Scientific Understanding.Peter Kosso - 2002 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 16 (1):39 – 48.
Must Understanding Be Coherent?Kareem Khalifa - 2016 - In Stephen Grimm, Christoph Baumberger & Sabine Ammon (eds.), Explaining understanding: new perspectives from epistemology and philosophy of science. London, UK: Routledge. pp. 139-164.
Is There Propositional Understanding?Emma C. Gordon - 2012 - Logos and Episteme 3 (2):181-192.
Understanding in Epistemology.Emma C. Gordon - 2017 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Testifying Understanding.Kenneth Boyd - 2017 - Episteme 14 (1):103-127.
Idealizations and Scientific Understanding.Moti Mizrahi - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 160 (2):237-252.
How Thought Experiments Increase Understanding.Michael T. Stuart - 2018 - In Michael T. Stuart, Yiftach Fehige & James Robert Brown (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Thought Experiments. London: Routledge. pp. 526-544.
Is Understanding a Species of Knowledge?Stephen R. Grimm - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (3):515-535.
The Epistemic Value of Understanding.Henk W. de Regt - 2009 - Philosophy of Science 76 (5):585-597.
Why Scientists Should Cooperate with Journalists.Boyce Rensberger - 2000 - Science and Engineering Ethics 6 (4):549-552.

Analytics

Added to PP
2017-10-24

Downloads
485 (#20,606)

6 months
47 (#21,669)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Matthew Slater
Bucknell University
Jason Leddington
Bucknell University

Citations of this work

Understanding and Trusting Science.Matthew H. Slater, Joanna K. Huxster & Julia E. Bresticker - 2019 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 50 (2):247-261.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references