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Political Science 102: Introduction to Political Science

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1. We think of science as accretion building on previous knowledge and scientific ... Ex: swans. II. Political Science Research: C. Key concepts in Science ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Political Science 102: Introduction to Political Science


1
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
1. We think of science as accretion building on
previous knowledge and scientific techniques.
2. Kuhn argues otherwise. Science is not
evolutionary but revolutionary.
3. Science operates and progresses using
paradigms framework of theory and knowledge.
2
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
a. Pre-science descriptions existence of
multiple theories competing with anotherno
unified world view.
3
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
b. Paradigm
1. Directs research research questions toward
teasing out all the implications of the
paradigm. 2. Little debate over methods basic
theoretical assumptions are set 3. Widespread
agreement on data and measurement, benchmarks,
etc.
4
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
c. Normal Science
1. Fit the paradigm to the facts and vice versa
without touching the theory. 2. Study facts the
paradigm determines important 3. Experimental
verification of theory 4. Articulation of the
ruling theory
5
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
d. Anomalies phenomena that doesnt fit with the
paradigms core theories
1. 1st reaction is to ignore or ice it. 2.
Adjust the theory to account for anomaly. 3. If
evidence is strong, the paradigm is torn apartno
amount of tinkering can preserve it.
6
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
e. Crisis and reconsideration of paradigm core
1. New period of pre-science 2. Shift between
paradigms is highly contentious-like rejecting
your religion
(Ex pre-Copernican vs. Copernican).
7
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
4. Phases of revolution
f. Revolution emergence of a new paradigm.
8
II. Political Science Research
A. Thomas Kuhns Structure of Scientific
Revolutions.
5. Problems with Kuhns work
a. In hard science, subject doesnt changeour
understanding does. In social science, the
subject changes, not our methods.
b. Not really a revolution. The paradigm shift
is merely the widening and deepening of the
base theories.
c. Most paradigms are limited from the start.
9
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci (poly sci polymer
science)
1. Traditional (orthodox) Approach
a. Fact-oriented descriptive b. Focused on
formal processes and institutions c. Problem
was that is you focus only on the laws, you may
miss the real story
10
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
2. Behavioralist
a. Political scientists in govt service during
1930s 40s experienced govt. What they saw did
not match up w/ the traditional
descriptions. b. shifted attention to the
individual
11
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
2. Behavioralist
c. individual behavior force behind
institutional action d. Development of
statistical tools and models for analyzing
behavior become advanced. Could assign numbers
to individual attributes to summarize trends in
behavior.
12
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
3. Rational Choice Approach
a. Rationalism maximum gain for minimum
cost. b. Assumes multiple courses of action with
associated gains costs for each choice.
13
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
3. Rational Choice Approach
c. We look at our options 1. Minimax minimum
loss for maximum gain.
2. Minimax regret model minimize the likelihood
of your worst outcome occurring.
3. Maximin increase the likelihood your worst
choice will not occur. Want A, will settle for
B, despise C. Choose B to avoid C.
14
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
3. Rational Choice Approach
d. Game Theory 1. Outcome is determined by
choices actors make throughout the game no best
choice wins it allit depends on choices of
others. 2. Nash Equilibrium strategies, one for
each player, such that no player has incentive to
unilaterally change their action.
15
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
a. Intense skepticism of any socially accepted
fact or value. Worldviews are socially
constructed and therefore not real. There is no
real, only perceived.
16
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
b. EVERTHING IS SOCIALLY CONSTRUCTED. We think
in wordslanguage is a social construction. c.
To understand, we study language in use.
17
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
d. No set evolution of the paradigm. Emerged
sometime following the modernist movement
1. Modernists rejected Victorian ideas of what
constituted art, music, poetry, etc. (Pound,
Joyce, Woolfe, Kakfa) 2. Modernists saw these
new forms as a way to unite thought and ideato
overcome fragmentation of sense. Order out of
chaos.
18
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
e. Postmodernists favor reflexivity and
fragmentation. They celebrate meaninglessness
and chaos. Why must the world have meaning?
Value? Meaning to whom? Of what kind of value?
19
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
f. Reflexivity The consumer ascribes the value
to the product, not the producer. Eye of the
beholder. You cant be wrong because knowledge
is subjective (though you can still be stupid)
20
II. Political Science Research
B. Paradigms in Poli Sci
4. Postmodernism (pomo) Critical Theory
g. All govt institutions are oppressive and
represent only those in power. We must
deconstruct power and deconstruct meaning within
government.
21
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
1. Inductive vs. Deductive logic
a. Inductive logic moving from the specific to
the general. Large s of individual observations
over time with no observation refuting the main
hypothesis. Building theory. b. Deductive
logic moving from the general to the specific.
Take theory and look for evidence that refutes
it. Chipping away at theory. Which sounds
better? Which is better for science?
22
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
1. Inductive vs. Deductive logic (better)
c. problem with inductive logic 1. always easier
to find confirming evidence than refuting
evidence. 2. We can never observe every single
possible occurrence 3. Impossible to prove a
theory--we just want to try and eliminate all the
things that will disprove the theory.
Ex swans.
23
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
2. Operational definition precise definition
that allows for empirical testing. 3. Variables
phenomena
a. Independent variables (x) act on or affect
something. b. Dependent variables (y) acted
upon or affected
24
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
4. Correlation vs. corroboration vs. causality.
a. Correlation change in variable X is
consistent with a change in Y.
b. Corroboration includes correlation but has a
higher standard--confirmation that a statement or
fact is true. c. Causality standard is even
higher than before. Ultimate evidence that one
phenomenon is directly caused by other phenomena.
25
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
5. Definition vs. description.
a. Definition sets the minimum and maximum
parameters. Confining ideas. b. Description
focuses on characteristics and types of
phenomena. Open unlimiting.
26
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
6. Quantitative vs. Qualitative analysis.
a. quantitative assigning of values to
attributes or phenomena. Use statistical
analysis for comparing variables and outcomes. b.
qualitative no reliance on mathematical measures.
27
II. Political Science Research
C. Key concepts in Science
7. Positive (empirical) vs. Normative theory.
a. Positive theories and studies of what is
actually happening (empirical/observable) Doesnt
mean good b. Normative theory and study of
what should be taking place--imposes belief and
values.
28
II. Political Science Research
D. Types of empirical study
1. Experiment
a. test group group in which variable is
introduced b. control group all other aspects
remain equivalent except the variable c. Problems
in social sciences 1. Hawthorne effect 2.
Rosenthal effect
29
II. Political Science Research
D. Types of empirical study
2. Quasi-experiment
a. study of groups but none exhibits the true
characteristics of a test or control group. b.
real world study the lab conditions cannot exist
3. Indirect Quantitative Analysis Use of data
complied by others to perform numeric analysis
30
II. Political Science Research
D. Types of empirical study
4. Case study
a. examination of a specific phenomenon or
entity b. allows in-depth examination of a
phenomenon. c. Problems w/ case study 1. Cant
generalize beyond the case 2. Apply to a given
point in time
31
II. Political Science Research
D. Types of empirical study
5. Surveys
a. use of questions to gain information b. allows
us to study personal attributes and collect data
on individuals. c. Problems w/ case study 1.
Hard to know if answers are genuine 2. Survey
questions are difficult to write 3. Survey
process is extremely complex
32
II. Political Science Research
E. Limitations of Political Science
1. discipline subject is socially constructed
-- many say we arent a real science 2. we apply
our values (all scientists) biases to our
hypothesis, observation findings. 3. If we are
too busy worrying about being scientific, do we
fail to ask the important questions?
(forest/trees type thing) 4. Science is
counter-intuitive re innovation 5. Value neutral
doesnt ethical
33
For next week 1. Do assignment 02 if you have
not yet 2. Get your copy of Animal Farm (
1984) 3. Read Grigsby Chapter 4 on Political
Theory
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