David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (1):117-132 (2002)
Alison Gopnik and Andrew Meltzoff have argued for a view they call the 'theory theory': theory change in science and children are similar. While their version of the theory theory has been criticized for depending on a number of disputed claims, we argue that there is a fundamental problem which is much more basic: the theory theory is multiply ambiguous. We show that it might be claiming that a similarity holds between theory change in children and (i) individual scientists, (ii) a rational reconstruction of a Superscientist, or (iii) the scientific community. We argue that (i) is false, (ii) is non-empirical (which is problematic since the theory theory is supposed to be a bold empirical hypothesis), and (iii) is either false or doesn't make enough sense to have a truth-value. We conclude that the theory theory is an interesting failure. Its failure points the way to a full, empirical picture of scientific development, one that marries a concern with the social dynamics of science to a psychological theory of scientific cognition.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
David S. Emmerich & James G. Greeno (1966). Some Decision Factors in Scientific Investigation. Philosophy of Science 33 (3):262-270.
Stuart S. Glennan (2005). The Modeler in the Crib. Philosophical Explorations 8 (3):217-227.
Theodore Bach (forthcoming). Psychological Concept Acquisition. In N. Payette (ed.), Connected Minds: Cognition and Interaction in the Social World. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
M. J. Cain (2007). Language Acquisition and the Theory Theory. Croatian Journal of Philosophy 7 (3):447-474.
reviewed John Wettersten (2006). I. C. Jarvie: The Republic of Science: The Emergence of Popper's Social View of Science 1935–1945,. Philosophy of Science 73 (1):108-121.
Stephen P. Stich & Shaun Nichols (1998). Theory Theory to the Max. Mind and Language 13 (3):421-449.
Eric Schwitzgebel (1996). Theories in Children and the Rest of Us. Philosophy of Science Association 3 (3):S202-S210.
Alison Gopnik & H. M. Wellman (1992). Why the Child's Theory of Mind Really is a Theory. Mind and Language 7 (1-2):145-71.
Shelby D. Hunt (1994). A Realist Theory of Empirical Testing Resolving the Theory-Ladenness/ Objectivity Debate. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 24 (2):133-158.
Michael A. Bishop (2002). The Theory Theory Thrice Over: The Child as Scientist, Superscientist, or Social Institution? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 33 (1):121-36.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads12 ( #133,516 of 1,100,088 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #304,128 of 1,100,088 )
How can I increase my downloads?