Journal of Basic and Applied Research International 7(4): 228-231, 2015
International Knowledge Press www.ikpress.org
HYPOTHETICO-DEDUCTIVE METHOD: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS MUHAMMAD USMAN TARIQ1* 1
Department of Computer Software Engineering, College of Signals, National University of Science and Technology, H-12, Islamabad, Pakistan. AUTHOR’S CONTRIBUTION The sole author designed, analyzed and interpreted and prepared the manuscript.
Received: 24th February 2015 Accepted: 3rd April 2015 Original Research Article Published: 26th April 2015 __________________________________________________________________________________ ABSTRACT Purpose: This paper presents the analysis of hypothetico-deductive method and its applications in different domains. Design/Methodology/Approach: The author explains hypothetico-deductive method various phases and steps to analyze the areas of improvement. Research Limitations/Implications: The study is limited to supplementary parts of the model due to the broad scope of implementation. Originality/Value: This paper will help to build up the understanding of the hypothetico-deductive model and basics steps to implement it correctly. Keywords: Hypothetico-deductive; experiments; research; scientific methods.
1. INTRODUCTION Science is based on many different pillars that combine to provide the methods of reasoning, logic, and ethics to conduct research. Based on the research methods the foundation of all the research is scientific reasoning. It varies with different nature of disciplines and based on four basic foundations pulling together the idea of scientific reasoning.
The initial basis of research is the foundation. It is a natural phenomenon for a researcher to start looking for a solution based on scientific questions and hypotheses. The theories observations will be tested against the data collected through observations.
The possible reasons behind any phenomenon are based on law of nature. There are several different scientific reasoning processes to find out a solution for a research problem through hypothesis. The theory is broken down into small different parts or problems to find out a valid hypothesis . The results are needed to be predicted for the research based on the outcome of the experiment. Most of the time based on the alternative hypothesis. The predictions of the theory are tested rather than theory to find out if the predictions are incorrect. Depending on the results theory, is accepted or refined. The applied part of research is data that is important to conduct research in the real world
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________ *Corresponding author: Email: [email protected]
Tariq; JOBARI, 7(4): 228-231, 2015
against the observations and predictions. If the results of both observation and prediction matches, the theory is strengthened. A wide range of statistical methods are used to conduct the test, but not all the disciplines use statistics (Haberman, 2011). The process of scientific reasoning cycles until the results are accepted or refuted according to the hypothesis.
2. LITERATURE REVIEW It is the mainstreams of the scientific research and often knows as true scientific research method. The method involves a number of steps for observing the subject. It allows the researcher to make a testable and realistic hypothesis. A hypothesis cannot be confirmed entirely by the scientific methods, and refined research can disprove it on later stages . The researcher must generate initial predictions from the hypothesis that can be proved on the later stages. The predictions can be tested to be a valid process through the hypothetico-deductive method.
2.4 Testability The inherent testability for obtaining proof of a hypothesis is the concept of testability. The growing technology has attacked the theories that were discovered in the history claiming to be non-testable and non-falsifiable. A part of the theory must be testable and analyzable with the current technology.
2.5 Post Hoc Reasoning It is theory that one event is based on another event and follows each other. It can be true in some case but not all the time. It is linking factors with each other to know the reason behind occurring of events. Science is always looking for possible causes and causal reasoning to judge the quality of information for a reasonable hypothesis .
3. STEPS OF HYPOTHETICODEDUCTIVE METHOD Following are the steps involved: 1.
2.1 Generating and Analysis the Data The experiments are performed to gather the statistical result to test the validity of the hypothesis. It must have manipulation of the variables to generate the analyzable data. The hypothetico-deductive method does not prove the hypothesis completely, and it is rare when it is done.
It is defined as the inherent testability of any scientific hypothesis. Experiments are designed to find out the validity of any hypothesis, and it is a belief in any hypothesis that it must be inherently disprovable before it is accepted as a theory or scientific hypothesis. It is based on a simple idea that no theory can be correct, and if it is not deniable then it is accepted as truth. The acceptance is dependent on the significance.
2.3 Verification Error It is a process of fitting the results to match the preconceived theory. Sometimes the results are based on personal understanding of the subject matter. There is a growing trend of verification error in scientific research. It is a belief that all the scientific statements must be verifiable and should make sense to be worth researching. This concept is called verificationism. It is rooted to the Aristotelian philosophy of what is known can only be tested.
Identifying the broad problem area in which main problem is occurring to do a research project. Defining the problem statement. It can be the scientific research with definite aim and general objective of the research. Development of hypothesis which should be testable and falsifiable. Measuring the theoretical framework and if it not measurable then it should be qualitative. Collection of data is based on quantitative and qualitative data. Analysis of data is done to check if the hypotheses generated were supported. Interpreting data for finding out the meaning of the results.
4. UTILIZATION OF HYPOTHETICODEDUCTIVE METHOD According to Lewis,  “This erroneous view of the method plus the absence of a proper definition of theory misguide my early development in science” (p. 362). The sciences like biology, physics, geology and chemistry all are based on the hypothetico-deductive method. Many of the teachers and authors misguide their students about the subject basic methodology. The theory can be explained with the examples in the different subject matter like if the light travels in concentric waves then the light should pass through the slits. The experiment which was conducted showed that light passed through both of the slits and created a third pattern screen of both bands (expected
Tariq; JOBARI, 7(4): 228-231, 2015
result) and therefore it supports the alternative hypothesis that light travels in concentric waves (conclusion). In the same way, the method can be used in all different subject matters for finding out the conclusions, experiments, hypothesis, and results. The hypothetico-deductive methods confirm a theory when the prediction and observation gap is small and disconfirms when the gap is large . Most of the focus in the scientific methodology is to reduce the gap between the predictions and observations. It is an essential component of the hypothetico-deductive method [6,7,8]. The hypothetico-deductive method tests the empirical hypothesis and theories well and widely used by the scientists.  writes, “Despite the inability of the hypothetico-deductive accounts to explain evidential relevance,…[it] remains today one of the most popular. The reason, I think, is that it is so obviously the correct account of a great deal of the history of science.” (p. 47-48). Many of the psychologists have also adopted the method and example can be facial inversion effect that related to the observation of inverted faces. Different research authors have used hypotheticodeductive method with different research aims.  used the method to test the hypothesis for employee turnover and performance of firm to have an reverse U shaped relationship, mainly low turnover or high turnover. The data was analyzed of 110 offices offering temporary employment and found the hypothesised curvilinerar relationship.  used the method to identify the categories of decisions misunderstood in general decisions. A series of interviews were conducted with the end customers to find out the categories of misunderstanding. The categories emerged as a result of implication of data and based on the fact that once they have occurred and might occur again.  used the methodology to investigate the impact of equality or balance during merging process of an organization. The researchers used case study of failed international mergers. They found out that the principle of equality has reverse effect on the social integration influencing it in negatively opposite to the predictions in literature.  used the methodology to investigate the relationship between the managerial level and personality. A personality test was conducted to find out the relationship between the results and the managerial level. Four different hypothesis were derived based on the positive or negative relation with the managerial level.  used the methodology in the banking sector to filter the data related to a particular story from another. The banking sector involves a vast area of research including social, economic and political factors combined together in one organizational context. The hypotheticodeductive method overlooks this challenge of
incorporating the subjective and social consequences values. It reduces the link between the prediction, technical and explanation control.  used the hypothetico-deductive method to the early theories of blood flow and William Harvey’s research. The theory was based on the hypothetico-deductive reasoning for the experiments of blood flow directions in a human body. The test was also conducted on the septum holes. The results according to the H-D method was that Galen’s theory was not supported .
5. SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE APPROACHES All the researchers who have implemented the methodology in real time have used the basic core steps of the H-D method. The researchers first analyzed the broad are of the main problem.  broad area was the organization performance,  problem area was influence on decisions,  was on equality steps taken by any organization in mergers,  problem domain was the attitude of managers,  broad area was the banking sector improvement and domain was the field of biology. For second step all the researchers have further narrowed the research such as  problem was narrowed to the employee turnover and performance. The third step of the H-D method is the problem statement for which all of the researchers have made different hypothesis to be tested with the H-D method. The measurement of the framework is the basic difference some of the authors have used interviews, others have used data collected through surveys, collection through blood samples, collection through social integration. This difference is dependent on the main problem domain of the H-D algorithm as it does not support the social integration properly. The data is then tested against the hypothesis during the process to check the rejection or acceptance. The another important step in the H-D method is the interpretation which has been used different by each of the researchers and according to psychology, it depends on the human nature and environment in which the results are conducted. The interpretation of the results can be different with one same experiment conducted by two different people. The references to the conclusion of results must be strong enough to define the actual result which is same as p-o gap.
6. HYPOTHETICO-DEDUCTIVE METHOD: RESEARCH AREA IMPROVEMENTS Methods are not always perfect. They require other knowledge to be combined with the other resources to produce the background theory, logical improvements, probability theory and hypothesis to determine the acceptance and rejection of a hypothesis model. The
Tariq; JOBARI, 7(4): 228-231, 2015
model is based on confirming the entire theory and cannot distinguish between different parts of the theory for acceptance. It does not completely explains the scientific research and structure of the scientific paper reports. The fundamental component that requires improvement is the prediction-observing (po) component that is limited to the model extent. The gap between the p-o components cannot be decreased, but its limit can be increased to fulfill the decreasing demand. The p-o gap cannot be increased infinitely without any limits as the model has to qualify the statement of within limits: Another model can be derived such as Reduction Model that can attempt to decrease the gap according to the domain model. The experiments will be different for each of the domain models to get the accurate results. The rule which can be derived on the above given analysis is that H-D method still needs a lot of improvement and a single hypothesis should have enough data in order to be rejected or accepted. Also the data should be validated by different persons or a committee led by group of people strong in interpreting statistical results. Another important step which should be added as a rule in conducting the H-D method is to obtain a prefeasibility of a research domain to check that whether H-D method is applicable or not applicable for a specific domain. The domain limitations must be considered in order to get the proper results. The rules are important to avoid collection of ambiguous data and selecting a methodology which suits the problem domain. Such as in banking sector H-D method lacks the social integration and cannot be properly implemented to get the required results. In that case the method needs to be enhanced before further implementation.
COMPETING INTERESTS Author has declared that no competing interests exist.
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