Epistemology and the theory of problem solving

Synthese 55 (1):21-48 (1983)
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Abstract

Problem solving has recently become a central topic both in the philosophy of science and in cognitive science. This paper integrates approaches to problem solving from these two disciplines and discusses the epistemological consequences of such an integration. The paper first analyzes problem solving as getting a true answer to a question. It then explores some stages of cognitive activity relevant to question answering that have been delineated by historians and philosophers of science and by cognitive psychologists and artificial intelligencers. The traditional opposition between discovery and justification is challenged. It is suggested that epistemology may be conceptualized, in part, as the critical assessment of problem-solving strategies.

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Alvin Goldman
Rutgers University - New Brunswick

Citations of this work

Context of discovery and context of justification.Paul Hoyningen-Huene - 1986 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 18 (4):501-515.
Genetic epistemology, equilibration and the rationality of scientific change.Richard F. Kitchener - 1987 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 18 (3):339-366.
Rezensionen.John J. Furlong, Joop Schopman, Richard F. Kitchener & Johanna Seibt M. A. - 1988 - Zeitschrift Für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 19 (1):148-170.
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References found in this work

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.Thomas S. Kuhn - 1962 - Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Edited by Ian Hacking.
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.Thomas Samuel Kuhn - 1962 - Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Edited by Otto Neurath.
The logic of scientific discovery.Karl Raimund Popper - 1934 - New York: Routledge. Edited by Hutchinson Publishing Group.
Criticism and the growth of knowledge.Imre Lakatos & Alan Musgrave (eds.) - 1970 - Cambridge [Eng.]: Cambridge University Press.

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