Edev_501 Response wk 1_3

Yes. Kuhn (1963) does characterise the scientists as one ‘who collects and examines the bare and objective facts’, then goes on to note that ‘Probably none of us believes that in practice the real-life scientist quite succeeds in fulfilling this ideal’ (p. 347). I’m looking forward to finding out more about the debate between Kuhn and the followers of Popper. As I develop my understanding of the various paradigms in research (i.e. quantative/ qualitative, postmodern/ critical, phenomenolgy/ ethnography, etc. I found Chapelle & Duff’s introduction a very good start for understanding that in second language research), perhaps we can share our insights and our views on this interesting subject.

Yet if I may highjack a Popperian distiction to qualify my comments about Stone (2006). Popper’s primary issue with inductive logic (1956) was:

that it does not provide a suitable dis- tinguishing mark of the empirical, non-metaphysical, character of a theoretical system; or in other words, that it does not provide a suitable ‘criterion of demarcation’. (p. 11)

Stone’s own demarcation between types of sensitivity does not allow for non-‘subtle’ or non-‘familiar’ cues (p. 348). I would like to extend the definition of sensitivity to include those cues.


Chapelle, C. A. & Duff, P. A. eds. (2003). Some Guidelines for Conducting Quantitative and Qualitative Research in TESOL. TESOL Quarterly Vol. 37[1]

Kuhn T., (1963), “The Function of Dogma in Scientific Research”, in Crombie A. ed., Scientific Change. Historical studies in the intellectual, social and technical invention, from a antiquity to the present, London, Heinemann Educational Books, 347-369.

Popper, K. (1959/ 1992). The Logic of Scientific Discovery. London: Routledge.

Stone, N. (2006). Conceptualising intercultural effectiveness for university teaching. Journal of Studies in International Education, 10(4), 334– 356.

About theCaledonian

Scot living in north Japan teaching at a national university.
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