1991 stats from America 3 out of 4 people read their horoscope 1 in 4 have a firm belief in astrology 1 in 4 claim to have experienced telepathy 1 in 4 believe in ghosts 1 in 6 claim to have seen a UFO
Watch both clips of 2 different psychics and discuss
Article is in Psy photo folder – to print!
Soal – card guessing, results statistically above that of chance Years later data was analysed to pick up that the number system could have been manipulated ad therefore fraudulent. This affected the credibility of anomalous research.
First clip is about mother who asked about her son dying of cancer.
The second is a response fro Randi calling her out about Amanda Barry
Study of Paranormal events and experiences under
Understand the nature of pseudoscience and
Explain methodical and theoretical issues in
Draw conclusions from the current research into
WHAT IS ANOMALISTIC
Study of paranormal events through
psychological and physical factors
Unique subject within psychology and has a
very different group of researchers.
Belief is at the center of anomalistic
Phenomena that cannot be explained using
conventional scientific theories, although
aspects of scientific though may be relevant
to provide a basis for explanation.
An ability to control objects with one’s mind,
e.g. moving a vase using the power of though
The showing of knowledge of an event
without being told about the event or
experiencing it. ESP could be seen to include
Out of body experience
Near death experience
Spontaneous psychic ability (PSI)
Past life experience
Anomalous healing (prayer, spiritual healer)
SCIENTIFIC FRAUD &
Science and Pseudoscience have developed as
opposites however the methods and similarities are
Bauer (2004) boundaries between science and
pseudoscience are not clear.
To understand pseudoscience we need to look at
what being scientific is.
Filippo (1991) Science might be thought of as a quest
for understanding that usually creates laws and principles
that can be tested experimentally.
Pseudoscientific information may be seen as a
mistaken belief and not scientific due to its lack of
testability and inability to stand up to critical analysis and
Science means ‘knowledge’
A term first introduced by Sir Karl Popper (1902-94)
who argued that falsification related to the process of
proving a hypothesis incorrect. He argued that this way
was the only way for scientific knowledge to be built
General characteristics would include objectivity,
reliability and the following of the philosophical doctrine
Empiricism = a view that suggest that experience is
central to the development and formation of
knowledge, and thus central to the scientific method.
Experience or evidence arises our of experiments not
intuition or revelation.
Some areas of pseudoscientific research use similar
methods to scientific research. Both gather data , both have
a research question upon which the hypotheses are based,
the investigation tests the hypothesis, and the results are
Both scientists and pseudoscientists pick and choose their
areas of study . There are cases in which pride, greed and
hunger for fame have got the better of scientists and
pseudoscientists and facts have been chosen effectively.
Similar experimental methodologies are used to
Different research methods can be used in the
acquisition of knowledge
Results are interpreted and communicated differently.
Pseudoscience research can be communicated direct to
the public where as science ensure peer reviews.
Pseudoscience researchers may pick and chose what
they study whereas science based researchers are dictated
by their knowledge.
Science formulates hypotheses, gathers information and
data, pseudoscience they formulate the hypotheses to
support the data gathered.
Scientific analysis can be ensured through methodological
pluralism and can be falsified.
RADNER AND RADNER
Please read the article from 1982
What other comparisons did they make between science
Homework / Task
Write up a short piece that compares two approaches from
the point of view of Radner & Radner
REALITY OR FRAUD
Who did the
What was it
Fraud ? Why?
Uri Geller (2000)
Ellen Greve (2000)
S. G. Soal (1941)
WHAT IS ESP?
Range of skills – telepathy (mind reading)
clairvoyance (contact with non-living),
precognition ( predicting future events)
Soal-Goldney (1938-41) 160 participants
took part in card guessing tasks. ESP.
WALTER J. LEVY JR
Precognition ability of rats to create physical changes
using will power ( psychokenesis).
Impalnted brains fo rats with electrodes
Electrical impulses (shock) of the pleasure centres of the
brains for 50% of the time
54% results suggests Rats have some anomalous
Issues- tampered with equipment. Animal rights.
Boundaries between pseudoscience and science are not
Anomalistic lacks methodological rigour
Radner and Radner reinforce point the greater differences
between science and pseudoscience
Fraudulent activity has had an adverse effect on
academics trying to establish anomalistic activity.
Controls on fraud are now a lot tighter.
What is the difference between
anomalistic psychology and
What is the difference between
science and pseudoscience?