/ / Theory is ... The meaning of the word "theory"

Theory is ... The meaning of the word "theory"


All modern science developed fromassumptions, which initially seemed mythical and implausible. But over time, having accumulated reasoned evidence, these assumptions have become a socially recognized truth. So there were theories on which all scientific knowledge of mankind is based. But what is the meaning of the word "theory"? The answer to this question you will learn from our article.

Definition of concept

There are many definitions of this term. But the optimal ones are those that are used by the scientific environment. Such definitions are taken as a basis.

Theory is a kind of system of representations in a given field of knowledge, which gives a holistic view of the existing laws related to reality.

theory is

Существует и более сложное определение.A theory is a set of ideas that are closed with respect to rationality. Just such an abstract definition of the term "theory" is given by logic. From the standpoint of this science, any idea can be called a theory.

Typology of scientific theories

For a more accurate understanding of the essence of scientific theories, one should turn to their classification. Methodologists and philosophers of science distinguish three main types of scientific theories. Let's consider them separately.

Empirical Theories

The first type is traditionally considered to be empiricaltheory. An example is Pavlov's physiological theory, Darwin's evolutionary theory, the theory of development, psychological and linguistic theories. They are based on a huge mass of experimental facts and explain a certain group of phenomena.

the meaning of the word theory

On the basis of these phenomena generalizations are formulated, andas a result, laws that become the basis on which the theory is built. This is also true for other types of theories. But the theory of the empirical type is formulated as a result of a descriptive and generalized character, without observing all logical rules.

Mathematical theories

Mathematical scientific theories constitute the secondtype of theories in this classification. Their characteristic feature is the use of mathematical apparatus and mathematical models. In such theories, a special mathematical model is created, which is an ideal object that can replace a real object. A striking example of this type are logical theories, elementary particle physics, control theory and many others. As a rule, they are based on an axiomatic method. That is, on the derivation of the basic propositions of the theory from several basic axioms. Fundamental axioms must necessarily meet the criteria of objectivity and do not contradict each other.

Deductive theoretical systems

The third type of scientific theory is deductivetheoretical systems. They appeared due to the task of rationally comprehending and substantiating mathematics. The first deductive theory is usually considered to be the Euclidean geometry, which was constructed using the axiomatic method. Deductive theories are built on the basis of the formulation of the main provisions and the subsequent inclusion in the theory of those statements that can be obtained as a result of logical conclusions from the starting positions. All logical conclusions and tools that are used in theory are clearly fixed to form an evidence base.

control theory

As a rule, deductive theories are very general andabstract, so the question often arises about their interpretation. A striking example is the theory of natural law. This is a theory that does not lend itself to an unambiguous assessment, so it is interpreted differently.

Philosophy and scientific theory: how do they relate?

In scientific knowledge, a special, but at the same timea specific role is assigned to philosophy. It is said that scientists, when formulating and comprehending certain theories, rise to the level not only of understanding a particular scientific problem, but also of understanding the existence and the very essence of cognition. And this, of course, is philosophy.

theory of development

Thus, the question arises.How does philosophy influence the construction of a scientific theory? The answer is quite simple, because these processes are inextricably linked. Philosophy is present in scientific theory in the form of logical laws, methodology, in the form of a general picture of the world and its understanding, the worldview of the scientist and all the fundamental scientific foundations. In this context, philosophy is both the source and the ultimate goal of constructing the majority of scientific theories. Even scientific, and organizational theories (for example, the theory of management) are not without a philosophical basis.

Theory and experiment

Самым важным методом эмпирического подтверждения theory is an experiment that must necessarily include measurement and observation, as well as many other methods of influencing the object or group of objects under study.

Experiment is a certain materialimpact on the object under study or on the conditions that surround it, which are produced for the purpose of further studying this object. The theory is what precedes the experiment.

the theory

In the scientific experiment, it is customary to single out several elements;

  • the ultimate goal of the experiment;
  • an object that will be studied;
  • conditions in which this object is located;
  • means for the behavior of the experiment;
  • material impact on the studied object.

With the help of each individual element, you canbuild a classification of experiments. According to this statement, it is possible to distinguish between physical, biological, and chemical experiments, depending on the object on which it is conducted. Also, experiments can be classified according to the goals that are pursued in their conduct.

The purpose of the experiment is to detectand the comprehension of some laws or facts. This type of experiment is called a search engine. The result of this experience can be considered the expansion of data on the object under study. But in most cases such an experiment is conducted to confirm a single hypothesis or the basis of the theory. This type of experiment is called a test. As you know, a fairly clear line between these two species can not be conducted. The same experience can be put in the framework of two types of experiment, or with the help of one you can find out the data that is characteristic of the other. Modern science is based on these two principles.

natural law theory

Experiment is always a kind of questionnature. But it should always be meaningful and based on prior knowledge in order to get a decent answer. It is this knowledge that theory gives, and it raises questions. Initially, the theory exists in the form of abstract, idealized objects, and then the process of its verification for validity proceeds.

Thus, we considered the meaning of the word "theory", its typologies, related links with science and practice. We can safely say that there is nothing more practical than a good theory.

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