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Scientific skepticism complete


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A presentation on scientific skepticism for Lai 531

A presentation on scientific skepticism for Lai 531

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  • THE MODERN SKEPTICAL MOVEMENT is a fairly recent phenomenon dating back to Martin Gardner’s 1952 classic, Fads and Fallacies In the Name of Science. Gardner’s copious essays and books over the past four decades debunking all manner of bizarre claims, coupled to James “the Amazing” Randi’s countless psychic challenges and media appearances throughout the 1970s and 1980s (including 36 appearances on The Tonight Show), pushed the skeptical movement to the forefront of public consciousness. The philosopher Paul Kurtz helped create dozens of skeptics groups throughout the United States and abroad, and his Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP) inspired me to found the Skeptics Society and Skeptic magazine, 
  • Transcript

    • 1. Scientific Skepticism
      Bridging the gap between fact and fiction
      LAI 531 John Brodnick
    • 2. Areas for Skepticism
      Crop Circles
    • First a few definitions
      The term Scientific Skepticism can be broken down a bit in order to Find its proper context for our usage
    • 10. First a few definitions
      1. the state of knowing : knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding
      2 a  : a department of systematized knowledge as an object of study <the science of theology> b : something (as a sport or technique) that may be studied or learned like systematized knowledge <have it down to a science>
      3 a : knowledge or a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws especially as obtained and tested through scientific method b : such knowledge or such a system of knowledge concerned with the physical world and its phenomena
    • 11. Scientific Method
    • 12. First a few definitions
      1 : originating in or based on observation or experience <empirical data
      2 : relying on experience or observation alone often without due regard for system and theory <an empirical basis for the theory
      3 : capable of being verified or disproved by observation or experiment <empirical laws>with the physical world and its phenomena
    • 13. First a few definitions
       : an attitude of doubt or a disposition to incredulity either in general or toward a particular object2 a : the doctrine that true knowledge or knowledge in a particular area is uncertain b : the method of suspended judgment, systematic doubt, or criticism characteristic of skeptics3 : doubt concerning basic religious principles (as immortality, providence, and revelation)
    • 14. New Skepticism
      Encompasses inquiry rather than doubt
      Positive and constructive
      The transformation of negative critical analysis of claims to knowledge into a positive contribution
    • 15. Skeptical Inquiry
      The key principle of skeptical inquiry is to seek, when feasible, adequate evidence and reasonable grounds for any claim to truth in any context
    • 16. Scientific Skepticism:-is a method of inquiry used to evaluate claims and determine their probable validity -Relies on Scientific empiricism-May be used to evaluate both mainstream science and those claims that are considered on the outside realms of science-Used in everyday life to evaluate claims
    • 17. The Beginnings of Skeptic movement
      Benjamin Franklin
      Was know for his role in experimenting with electricity and role in independence movement in the 1700’s
      -Debunked claims in Paris of “Mesmerism "and “Animal Magnetism”
    • 18. The Beginnings of Skeptic movement
      Harry Houdini
      Magician Best at detecting fraudulent claims by spiritualist as they use the same “tricks” as magicians
    • 19. The Beginnings of Skeptic movement
      Martin Gardner’s 1952 classic,
       Fads and Fallacies In the Name of Science.
    • 20. The Beginnings of Skeptic movement
      James “the Amazing” Randi
    • 21. The Beginnings of Skeptic movement
      Paul Kurtz
    • 22. Some More popular Skeptics
      Carl Sagan
    • 23. Some More popular Skeptics
      Neil deGrasse Tyson
    • 24. Some More popular Skeptics
      Richard Dawkins
    • 25. Some More Popular Skeptics
      Michael Shermer
    • 26. Basic Steps to Skepticism
      Occam's razor:
      when you have two competing theories that make exactly the same predictions, the simpler one is the better.
    • 27. Basic Steps to Skepticism
      Carl Sagan’s Baloney Detection Kit
      Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the facts
      Encourage substantive debate on the evidence
      Arguments from authority carry little weight
      Spin more than one hypothesis
      Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis
      If there are two hypothesis that explain the data equally choose the simpler.
      Ask whether the hypothesis can be falsified
    • 28. Why be skeptical ?
      Pseudoscientific claims and the Para normal
      Children and education
    • 29. Pseudo science
      • Homeopathy
      • 30. Creationism and Intelligent Design
      • 31. Astrology
      • 32. Crystal healing, Pyramid power, Magnet therapy
      • 33. Psychic Abilities
      • 34. Crypto Zoology: Bigfoot, Loch Ness Monster and Yetti
      • 35. Crop Circles
      • 36. Ancient Astronaut Theory
      • 37. Flood Geology
    • MEDIA
      News papers
      It is important to remember that many media outlets will use sensationalism and extravagant promotions in order to catch viewers attention
    • 38. News Papers
    • 39. Magazines
    • 40. Radio
    • 41. Television
    • 42. Television
    • 43. Politics
      G W. Bush
      Vetoes stem cell research
      Has Staff “Scientists”“edit climate reports
      Many Federal agencies required to submit information through censors
      Liberal Democrat
      Conservative republicans
    • 44. Education
      Creationism and Intelligent Design
      In Kentucky, a bill recently introduced in the Legislature would encourage teachers to discuss “the advantages and disadvantages of scientific theories,” including “evolution, the origins of life, global warming and human cloning.”
    • 45. Scientific Skepticism
      Many additional Topics
      Anti science
      Food safety
      Food labeling
      Health claims on food and supplements
      Religions influence on science
      The Mayan calendar and 2012
    • 46. Scientific Skepticism
    • 47. Further Study
    • 48. Further Study
    • 49. Further Study
    • 50. Further Study
      Point of Inquiry
      Complete List of Scientific Skepticism podcasts
    • 51. References
      Kendrick Frazier, (2009). Science under siege : defending science, exposing pseudoscience
      Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books
      Kurtz Paul, (2010) Exuberant skepticism
      Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books
      Shermer Michael (2001). The borderlands of Science
      New York, NY Oxford press
      Kurtz, Paul, The new skepticism :   inquiry and reliable knowledge
      Buffalo, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 1992.
      • Hall, H. (2009). Homeopathy: Still Crazy After All These Years. Skeptic, 15(1), 8-9. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database. Retrieved 04/10/2010
      Nardi, P. (2010). Magic, Skepticism, and Belief. Skeptic, 15(3), 58-64. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database. Retrieved 03/28/2010
      Grothe, D. (2009). Skepticism 2.0. Skeptical Inquirer, 33(6), 51. Retrieved from MasterFILE Premier database. Retrieved 03/22/2010
      Stollznow, K. (2009). Skepticism and Blogging. Skeptical Inquirer, 33(6), 41. Retrieved from MasterFILE Premier database Retrieved 03/28/2010
      Galef, J. (2010). Uncertainty in Science. Humanist, 70(1), 10. Retrieved from MasterFILE Premier database. Retrieved 04/10/2010
      Gooding, J., & Metz, B. (2010). Connecting the Dots between Consumer Protection, Skepticism, and Science. Science Activities, 47(2), 41. Retrieved from MasterFILE Premier database Retrieved 03/28/2010
      (2009). Skepticism. Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition, 1. Retrieved from MasterFILE Premier database. Retrieved 03/28/2010
    • 52. References 04/19/2010 04/19/2010 04/12/2010 04/19/2010 Retrieved 04/19/2010 04/19/2010 04/19/2010