This course is intended to cover the Introduction to Philosophy of Science (HPS 1653/PHIL 1610) second-year undergraduate course at the University of Pittsburgh, given between August and December 2014.


Revision Questions for All Weeks

Essay Questions (Deadline November 14)

Past Midterm Paper

Week 1M: Course Introduction & Overview

Week 1W/2W: Logical Positivism/Empiricism

Carnap, Hahn & Neurath (1929), Wissenschaftliche Weltauffassung – Der Wiener Kreis.  Trans: The Scientific Conception of the World – The Vienna Circle, available here.

Schlick (1930), ‘Die Wende Der Philosophie’.  Translated by Rynin (1959), ‘The Turning Point in Philosophy’, available here.

Carnap (1932), ‘Über Protokollsätze’.  Translated by Creath & Nollan (1987), ‘On Protocol Sentences’, available here.

Week 3M: Evidence, Confirmation & Inductivism (I)

Week 3W: Evidence, Confirmation & Inductivism (II)

Hempel (1945), ‘Studies in the Logic of Confirmation (I.)’, Mind 54, pp. 1-26, available here.  (Part II is also available here.)

Earman & Salmon (1992), ‘The Confirmation of Scientific Hypotheses’, available here.

Goodman (1955/1983), ‘The New Riddle of Induction’, Ch. 3 of Fact, Fiction and Forecast, available here.

Week 4M/4W: Popper: Falsificationism

Pennock (2005), expert report for Kitzmiller et al. v. Dover Area School District, available here.

Week 5M/5W: Kuhn I: Normal Science

Week 6M/6W: Kuhn II: Revolutionary Science

Kuhn (1982), ‘Commensurability, Comparability, Communicability’, available here.

Week 7M: Lakatos: Research Programmes

Week 7W: Feyerabend: Epistemological Anarchism

Week 8M/8W: Sociology of Science

Bloor (1976), Knowledge and Social Imagery, Chapter 1, available here.

Shapin & Schaffer (1985), Leviathan and the Air-Pump, Chapter 1, available here.

Bloor (1999), ‘Anti-Latour’, available here.

Week 9W: Feminist Philosophy of Science

Harding (1986), The Science Question in Feminism, Chapter 1, available here.

Harding (1993), ‘Rethinking Standpoint Epistemology: What is “Strong Objectivity”?’, available here.

Martin (1991), ‘The Egg and the Sperm’, available here.

Longino (1990), Science As Social Knowledge, Chapter 4, available here.

Week 10M: Laudan on Values in Science

Laudan (2004), ‘The Epistemic, the Cognitive, and the Social’, available here.

Week 11M: Primer on Probability

Mellor (2005), Probability: A Philosophical Introduction, available here.

Earman & Salmon (1992), ‘The Confirmation of Scientific Hypotheses’, pp. 66-84, available here.

Week 11W: Bayesianism

Salmon (1990), ‘Rationality and Objectivity in Science, or Tom Kuhn Meets Tom Bayes’, available here.

Week 12M/12W/13M: Realism & Anti-Realism

van Fraassen (1980), The Scientific Image, Chapter 2, available here.

Laudan (1981), ‘A Confutation of Convergent Realism’, available here.

Fine (1984), ‘The Natural Ontological Attitude’, available here.

Worrall (1989), ‘Structural Realism: The Best of Both Worlds?’, available here.

van Fraassen (1980), The Scientific Image, Chapter 4, available here.

Week 13W/14M: Laws of Nature

Lewis (1973), Counterfactuals, pp. 72-77, available here.

Armstrong (1983), What Is a Law of Nature?, Chapters 1-6, available here.

Lewis (1983), ‘New Work for a Theory of Universals’, pp. 39-45, available here.

Week 15M/15W: Explanation

Lipton (1992), ‘The Seductive-Nomological Model’, available here.

van Fraassen (1977), ‘The Pragmatics of Explanation’, available here.

Kitcher (1981), ‘Explanatory Unification’, available here.