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[Xmca-l] Re: Social Science Is Busted. But the NIH Has a Plan that Could Fix It | WIRED
I just got to this message, Larry.
I agree, everyone on xmca should read the article, not only because it is
relevant to Margaret and Carrie's paper vis a vis the trajectory of
neoliberal exaggerations of trends visible from Bush onward and if Mill can
be used as an authority, back to the origins of modern mass schooling. It
is also directly relevant to the kinds of pressures that current and future
generations of social science researchers will face in terms of grants and
publications. For example:
* For one, the plan calls for scientists to nail down and agree on
terminology for different concepts so researchers aren’t just talking past
each other. “Often, in behavioral science, people talk about different
phenomena but really mean the same thing,” says Riley. Or the opposite
happens: Chemists don’t squabble about what oxygen is, but if psychologists
convene a conference on a fuzzier concept like “trust,” says Colin Camerer
<http://people.hss.caltech.edu/~camerer/index.htm>, an economist at
Caltech, they’ll spend the first two days disagreeing about what the word
*That ambiguity gets tricky when researchers are trying to share and
compare datasets, especially the massive ones scientists work with
nowadays. (If you’re trying to compare variables in two datasets both named
“resilience,” how do you know they’re really the same thing?) To fix these
problems, the plan suggests, scientists should settle on rigorously defined
terms. “We need to figure out what we mean when we say ‘depression,’ and
how to define it—either by using the same measures, or by calibrating with
the same framework,” Riley says.*
The first paragraph rings true to me and ought to at least resonate with
even the most legitimate peripheral participant on xmca. The theory ladeness
of core terms is so very clearly laid out in this imaginary idea-cocktail
party. And as the second paragraph makes clear, its all about coding, which
David has introduced into the conversation.
Overall, I think its relevant to both the theory and practice that serves
as the content of xmca.
To quote a Soviet favorite. What is to be done?.
With respect to the current article under discussion, that is the question
I have been trying to push vis a vis those of us whose work is
professionally tied up with education. Suppose the critique is correct and
that the nature of the alternative is specified to the level present in the
article.Here is a quote from the conclusion about which there has been some
* In other words, we as teachers, students, parents, and researchers must
articulate new ways of making selves intelligible in the contexts of our
lives, including producing “identities-with-standing” that encompass the
qualities we want to promote, identities that index a way-of-being that
brings special pride and a sense of self-worth with respect to qualities
that matter. In the case of schools and*
*classrooms, these qualities might include intellectual curiosity, serious
deliberation, citizen participation,*
*social critique, and deep knowledge and understanding.*
Do we come up with "indexes of 'identities with standing'"? Or "social
critique" (no problem with knowledge and understanding, we have test
scores. :-) ).
How does this collection of legitimately peripheral participants in so many
lifeworlds address this situation as relevant academic "experts"?
(my son often reminds me that an expert is just a drip under pressure).
Odd historical circumstances when Lenin's "what is to be done" question is
posed in such an upside down confluence of historically antonymous
ideologies and world systems.
On Thu, Nov 24, 2016 at 2:16 PM, <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> This may be of interest on the topic of standardization and replication
> and measurement phenomena as what seems to be driving the desire for
> (exact) science and how it is colonizing social studies
> Social Science Is Busted. But the NIH Has a Plan that Could Fix It
> The NIH's Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research is responding
> to a fundamental shift in social science research.
> Sent from my Windows 10 phone