Problems with Non-Scientific Analyses of Social Phenomena
Social problems are social issues that the world continuously encountered. These social problems are happening at different places in different parts of the world that is why they are also called as global social issues. To study and interpret the human society, sociologist has been able to help people understand the nature and scope of the social problems. These social problems that are happening sometimes are misunderstood and many have incorrect knowledge or misconceptions on the roots of these social problems.
Modern technologies have help people to see the problems from all the sides of the world and much information can be release about it. For all we know this problems are caused by changing values. The social problems follows pattern than can be useful to analyze the problem. Most of the times the knowledge people have of the issues are not enough. People may see the problems from one side only and lack true understanding of it. Lay observation and interpretation of social issues or phenomena are not reliable enough and people tend to make inaccurate perception of the problems.
To avoid such mistakes scientific analysis is a considered solution. Social scientist made used of all the observations to conduct study and research about the true nature of the problem. They may use qualitative way of thinking which means that their interpretation are not just based on the rule of majority or what most of the people think. This way of thinking will help social scientist to explain the social phenomena by investigation and analysis of individual and group experiences, human actions and world outlooks.
Scientific analysis of social problems promotes more accurate interpretations of problems that non scientific one. Four Different Types of Errors Made In Nonscientific Social Analysis There are four different types of errors made in nonscientific analysis and these include inaccurate observation, overgeneralization, selective observation and illogical reasoning. There are many examples of nonscientific analysis in our society. Inaccurate observation happens because the observation is not done in a scientific way or based only on our personal knowledge.
Overgeneralization happens when people tend to draw conclusion too quickly without enough evidence. Others will conduct selective observation which only considers partial evidence. Lastly, there is illogical reasoning wherein one based his opinion on something completely unreasonable. If people will based their knowledge on this way they will not really understand the problem, point out its real cause and how to find solution. By using scientific research and qualitative observation people can avoid errors in analyzing social problems. Suicide Problems and Lunar Phase
One of the problems of our society today is the incidence of suicide. People wonder why people that commit suicide continue to exist in our society. In almost all society people got bothered by suicide victims. Peoples that commit suicide come from different economic backgrounds and even teenage suicide is common nowadays. In the article, Influence of Lunar Phase in Suicide: The End of a Myth? It tries to study the reason why people have associated suicide to lunar phase. Is there really a basis for such belief? This example illustrates illogical reasoning.
In scientific findings there has found to be little connection between lunar phases and the acts of suicide although it is a widespread belief. There is weak evidence that this lunar phase is the primary cause of suicide. Corruption Problems Another serious problem of the society is corruption. Corruption seems to be a common problem in many government organizations. How do people look with these social problems? Some believed that corruption is predominantly African problem and also most African countries are run by corrupt dictators, which can be described as selective observation of the problem.
It may be true but it tends to focus only on corruption in Africa and not with other countries. This selective observation is a narrow outlook of the real nature of corruption that is happening around the world. Another wrong notion with corruption is that corruption is a matter of culture. Some also believed that people in developing countries have little to do to minimize corruption. Terrorism Problems Terrorism problem is one of the most controversial issues of the world today. There are a lot of myths and nonscientific analysis of this problem.
Some would offer nonscientific interpretations as to the cause of the problem. Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks a lot of speculations about the issue has come up. The government itself has made harsh decisions which affected the society even more. Due to inaccurate observation, people cannot determine the exact cause of the problem and how they can fully prevent another terrorist attacks. Inaccurate observation may tend to limit people of the scope and the severity of the issue. After the 2001 attack on WTC people are not sure if the terrorist are still around.
A careful observation of the current terrorist attack should help people of the right decisions to solve the problem. Economic Recession Problem In an article and other terrorist myths, the issue on recession was analyzed and if there is really a link between terrorism and recession. Economic recession is fast becoming a global issue. The anxiety or fears for the effects of this recession is now monitored. Terrorism was blame as the leading cause of these problems but according to an article it explained that the recession have started even before the terrorist attacks.
So this had become an overgeneralization of the problem. Aside from terrorism there are many other reasons why recession is taking place. Recession could be blame by several factors. People have started to overgeneralize the problem and draw conclusion to quickly without careful consideration of other factors involved in the latest social problem in economic recession. Conclusion In this study one can gain understanding of the importance of using scientific analysis in drawing conclusions. This work is what social scientist tries to emphasize.
Social problems are complex in nature and there are many underlying causes to it. The world needs scientific understanding and the ability to distinguish facts from myths. The common errors committed in non scientific analyses are discussed. This will guide us to identify what makes analyses reliable or not. People cannot base their knowledge of a certain issue on illogical reasoning, overgeneralization, inaccurate observation and selective observation. To make scientific analyses one should utilized qualitative method of analysis, statistical and numerical data and even mathematical modeling.
These real world phenomena should design research that would be able to identify cause and effect relationships, formulating hypothesis, and finally giving accurate explanation as to the real nature of the problem. If people will not depend on scientific research we might be the victimized by the fallacies and logical errors by ideas not supported with adequate observation. In any scientific methods the concept of theory, experiment, hypotheses, variables, control groups, reliability and validity are important things to consider. Non-scientific analyses of social problems will not lead us to the truth.
The information we will get from it may not be useful enough for us to prevent or resolve the problem. These are prone to errors and are not beneficial in interpreting global issues. References Mueller, J. , (2006) “Is There Still A Terrorist Threat? The Myth of the Omnipresent Enemy. ” Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved November 27, 2008 from http://www. foreignaffairs. org/ Konecki, K. , (2005) “Editorial-Qualitative Understanding of Others and Qualitative Sociology”. Qualitative Sociology Review. Retrieved November 27, 2008 from http://www. qualitativesociologyreview. org/ Biermann, T. , Estel, D. , Sperling, W. , Bleich, S. , Kornhuber, J. & Reulbach, U. (2005)
“Influence of Lunar Phases on Suicide: The End of a Myth? A Population Based Study”. Chronobiology International. Retrieved November 27, 2008 from http://www. ncbi. nlm. nih. gov/pubmed/ “Corruption: Myths and Facts” (2007) Retrieved November 27, 2008 from http://www. dochas. ie/documents/Corruption_Myths_and_Facts. pdf Smith, D. (2004) “Recession and Other Terrorist Myths”. Timesonline. Retrieved November 27, 2008 from http://business. timesonline. co. uk/Sample Essay of Eduzaurus.com