The course is meant for MSc and PhD students in any of the natural sciences who are performing scientific research projects. This course is obligatory for all MSc students Chemistry and all MSc students Life Science and Technology.
The basic principles and ideas underlying the modern scientific enterprise (focussed on natural sciences) are taught. The aim is to let the student contemplate concepts like ‘truth’, ‘experiments’, ‘models’, ‘confirmation/falsification’ and make the student aware of the limitations of the ability to make objective observations. Also current practices, like the mechanisms of research funding, the ‘publish or perish’ dogma and the importance of impact as well as integrity and ethics in science will be discussed.
At the end of the course students:
• have a basic knowledge of the philosophy of science
• have a basic understanding of modern scientific practices
• can critically discuss aspects of the scientific enterprise orally as well as in writing
• can critically discuss the relation of science and society orally as well as in writing
Mode of instruction
Lectures, group discussions and essay writing and evaluation.
Schedule information can be found on the website of the programmes.
Register for this course via uSis
Papers from the literature.
Slides presented during the courses.
Writing of an essay (100%). Preparation for the seminars and attendance are obligatory.