“My daughter truly enjoyed the class and has motivated her further study in science. She also appreciated Mr. Gold’s passion and excitement for science!” –Chigusa, parent, about the Outschool class “Logic Corner: What Is Science?,” 12 Feb 2020
Schedule: This is a 1-hour class.
Format: Lecture with some class participation. No grading; homework is optional.
Cost: $20 per person for a group class of 4 or more students; $80 for one-on-one tutoring.
Payment options: Payments can be made via PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, cash, or check.
Materials: Pencil and paper.
For more details or to schedule a class, contact Michael by phone at 281-770-2276 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Science, real science, is a tool we can and should use every day to get what we want, to play, to be healthy, and to live better. It is not something only in books; it is not something only “authorities” or “scientists” do. It is an organized knowledge of how to get things done in the world to survive and thrive.
But it’s often misunderstood! Consider these quotes about many modern scientists and modern science education (we don’t want this to apply to us! this class will help!):
1. “Science students learned the facts of their specific field without understanding how science should work in order to draw true conclusions.” –David Epstein, Range: How Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World
2. “Few [scientists] are philosophers. Most are intellectual journeyman, exploring locally, hoping for a strike, living for the present.” –E.O. Wilson, Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge
We will learn some aspects of good science from specific examples so you can better understand science, practice it in everyday life, and start to recognize good science and “bad science.” The topic is broad and deep — including induction, finding causes, forming concepts, constructing theories, measuring, using evidence, experimentation, using the correct instrument, deduction, etc. — so we cannot cover everything, but we can cover some important basics.
What we can cover depends on the background and interests of the students in class, but we will learn about the nature and the logic of science. We will learn a bit about how science really works, to help us clear up some confusions and keep ourselves from getting confused in the first place.
This is a class for everyone — science is all around us! — but especially for those who want to go into science or engineering careers, or study science in school.
We will use a combination of lecture, interactive discussion, Q&A, and in-class work. Be prepared to think, to learn, and to have new horizons open up. Come prepared to listen, take notes, interact, and learn!
Want more motivation to take this class? Look at what even the highly regarded, academically elite Johns Hopkins University has to do for their graduate students (because, unlike some other places, they know it needs to be done).
1. “But educators at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health assert that memorization alone does not a scientist make — above all, students must be critical, creative thinkers who are honest and responsible with data. In order to train scientists as critical thinkers, the R3 Graduate Science Initiative was recently created in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology (MMI), led by director Gundula Bosch, Ph.D.” (from: https://biomedicalodyssey.blogs.hopkinsmedicine.org/2018/03/revolutionizing-with-r3-a-new-ph-d-program-seeks-to-train-scientists-as-critical-thinkers/)
2. “For their part, Casadevall and Bosch write that science education reform should result in scientists who are: (1) broadly interested, creative and self-directed, as were some scientists in the era of Louis Pasteur, Marie Curie, Albert Einstein, and Linus Pauling; (2) versed in epistemology, sound research conduct and error analysis, according to the “3R” norms of good scientific practice—rigor, responsibility and reproducibility; (3) skilled in reasoning using mathematical, statistical and programming methods and able to tackle logical fallacies.” (from: https://hub.jhu.edu/2018/01/03/biomedical-science-education-reform-casadevall-bosch/)
Note: this is a class on logic, so we need to be prepared to think about our thinking. And the material and methods could be taught to adults, business professionals, and scientists, too; it’s not just easy stuff for kids. 🙂