The Natural Sciences: Evaluating knowledge construction and validity

In order to better understand the strengths and limitations of the Natural Sciences: Engage in the following two activities below!

Scientists have always been, and will always be, limited by their own knowledge and their available tools of measurement. This is a major limitation of the natural sciences.

  1. With a partner or small group, brainstorm a list of old, false scientific conclusions.
  2. What evidence were these conclusions based on? Was the logic use to derive this knowledge deductive or inductive?
  3. Now identify the new knowledge or new tools of measurement that led to the  supplanting the old false scientific conclusion.

For 200 years, Newtonian physics was the dominant theory about the movement of all physical elements of the universe. However, new technologies in the form of new measuring devices and new mathematics showed that Newton’s theories did not hold true at very small sizes or very large sizes (larger than planets).

  1. Does this mean Newton was wrong?
  2. Discuss how inductive logic failed in this example.
  3. Does the fact that Newton’s laws only applied ‘some of the time’ support the idea that mathematics exists ‘out there’ waiting to be discovered or the view that mathematics is an invented description of our observations?

PBL: A research based application: Increasing belonging at school

A sense of belonging among team members is an essential element of success of any organization

Link to activity here!   This activity will require you to create a proposal for our prinipal      and director in which you provide a a research based rationalization and action plan in regard to increasing a sense of belonging among students at our school!

Understanding the Knowledge Framework

The “Knowledge Framework” is a methodology for analyzing AOKs by breaking them up into smaller understandable chunks. Once one understands how this framework operates within one AOK, they can perform a similar analysis on another and then conduct comparative analysis between the two. Conducting this analysis is the core of TOK.

In order to better understand the above, engage in the learning helper linked here: Understanding the Knowledge Framework

Understanding the Importance of Belonging

Being part of a group is a fundamental part of the human, and animal, experience

The KEY takeaway in Social Psychology is the innate need to belong. This desire to be a part of groups has a profound impact on our behaviour in both positive and negative ways. Use the linked investigative learning activity below in order to acquire research based knowledge regarding these effects:

Understanding Belonging Linked here

Analysis: Understanding how to extract knowledge from research

It is important that you are able to read peer reviewed research and understand knowledge contained within. Research can be intimidating because of all the big words, data; tables and other obfuscating details.

However this activity is designed to make you a psychology detective, get your Sherlock Holmes on and demystify research!

This particular piece is relevant to our understanding of the effect of technology on cognition and is a recent study getting a lot of attention: It can be found on the google doc activity linked HERE

Understanding Bias: Applying knowledge

You and a partner will choose 1 of the established biases below. Detailed descriptions of each can be found on the amazing website of the DECISION LAB think tank; an organization with the aim of using behavioural science to make things better

Step 1: Chose 1 of the following Biases to learn about:

***Ikea Effect ***Cognitive Dissonance
***Confirmation Bias ***Availability Heuristic
***Halo Effect ***Bandwagon Effect
***Anchoring ***Self-Serving Bias

Step 2: Prepare a short presentation in accordance with the assignment linked HERE in which you’ll teach the class about your bias.

Click HERE for link to Evaluation RUBRIC !