This textbook offers an introduction to the philosophy of science. It helps undergraduate students from the natural, the human and social sciences to gain an understanding of what science is, how it has developed, what its core traits are, how to distinguish between science and pseudo-science and to discover what a scientific attitude is. It argues against the common assumption that there is fundamental difference between natural and human science, with natural science being concerned with testing hypotheses and discovering natural laws, and the aim of human and some social sciences being to understand the meanings of individual and social group actions. Instead examines the similarities between the sciences and shows how the testing of hypotheses and doing interpretation/hermeneutics are similar activities. The book makes clear that lessons from natural scientists are relevant to students and scholars within the social and human sciences, and vice versa. It teaches its readers how to effectively demarcate between science and pseudo-science and sets criteria for true scientific thinking.
Divided into three parts, the book first examines the question What is Science? It describes the evolution of science, defines knowledge, and explains the use of and need for hypotheses and hypothesis testing. The second half of part I deals with scientific data and observation, qualitative data and methods, and ends with a discussion of theories on the development
of science. Part II offers philosophical reflections on four of the most important con
cepts in science: causes, explanations, laws and models. Part III presents discussions on philosophy of mind, the relation between mind and body, value-free and value-related science, and reflections on actual trends in science.
"The aim of Lars-Goran Johansson's textbook Philosophy of Science for Scientists is ... to provide an introduction to the philosophy of science for students in all fields of science. ... the book is supposed to be suitable for an undergraduate level course in the philosophy of science for philosophy students." (Amanda Thorell, Theoria, Vol. 83, 2017)
"Lars-Goran Johansson's recent book Philosophy of science for scientists is the only textbook in the philosophy of science that is addressed specifically to an audience consisting of scientists. ... In its breadth of treated topics, the book can serve as a basic text to many different courses in the philosophy of science." (Maarten Franssen, Metascience, Vol. 26, 2017)
"Philosophy of Science for Scientists by Lars-Goran Johansson: a lovely textbook for undergraduates. It is a highly readable introduction to how one can view the practice of science. ... this is an excellent introduction to understanding science in a general sense. Students and practitioners will find it worthwhile to read and discuss." (David S. Mazel, MAA Reviews, maa.org, November, 2016)
"This is an excellent book that can serve as a very appropriate textbook for the first course in Philosophy of Science. ... it is a very well written book and is an enjoyable reading. ... It is well written by a great authority in the field and I strongly recommend it to you if you are interested in to understand what science is and why science is important for knowledge and our understanding of reality." (Philosophy, Religion and Science Book Reviews, Bookinspections.wordpress.com, July, 2016)