Sunday, September 23, 2018

MediaTheory: Theory, Science & Science Literacy - Neil deGrasse Tyson (W2-P4) Fa18


Below are some possible definitions of science based a presentation by Dr. William McComas (Skeptic Society).

  • “Science is what scientists do.”
    • So, science is what scientist do.  Scientists are those who do science.   This one isn't so helpful.
  • “Science is a method of testing claims and it is not an immutable compendium of absolute truths.”
    • This definition works.  Highlights how science is a process, something we do.
  • “Science is the quest for knowledge, not the knowledge itself.”
    • Again, science is a process, in this case, a quest.

What is the relationship between science and theory.   If science is a process, then theory is?

If you are interested, check out the following info. on science literacy.
Science Communicators and Science Literacy

Below Tyson speaks of science and scientific literacy.
What is scientific literacy?  Is it important?

My Tyson Mashup

1. Stephen Colbert Interview of Tyson (start at 6:15 and get to at least, 25:30, if you can)

2. Tyson at a science festival

3. Audio clip of Tyson speaking at the Science Pub in Portland, Oregon, 2009 (play clip from about 4:00-11:20).

A formal definition of scientific literacy: "scientific literacy is the knowledge and understanding of scientific concepts and processes required for personal decision making, participation in civic and cultural affairs, and economic productivity" (National Academy of Sciences report).

What does Neil DeGrasse Tyson add to the definition?
You may not plan to be a scientist, but should you be science literate?  How do you become science literate?

Note to be science literate also means to be knowledgeable of the general concept of theory and and knowledge of specific theories, especially those relevant to a person chosen area of study.

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