Reading Reflection #8: Evidence Part 2

  • Briefly describe the scientific method (you may have to Google it). What are the main characteristics of the scientific method, as mentioned in this chapter, that contribute to the reliability and dependability of research data and results?
    • From google, the scientific method includes 7 steps: 1. Question 2. Research 3. Hypothesis 4. Experiment 5. Observe/observations 6. Results/Conclusions 7. Communicate results
    • From that, the scientific method involves seeking knowledge by testing a hypothesis and making obersavtions based on those predictions which is what us, as students, must do to ensure the research data we are looking at is reliable.
  • What are some ways that surveys or questionnaires can be unreliable? What are some things to look for to verify the reliability of survey information?
    • Surveys may be unreliable because people can choose how to answer them and some questions can be more biased. Ask questions, look at background information on the author and find the bias first.
  • What are some pros and cons of research studies? Explain how some research findings can be problematic.
    • Pros: dependable, science & fact based, ignore bias. Forms publicly verifiable data, uses control and precision in language
    • Cons: costs money, time, and resources. Finding may contradict each other, research varies in quality, facts change over time
  • What are three questions you can use to evaluate research studies? Where (in an article) should you look to find answers to these questions?
    • 1. What is the quality of the source of report? 2. How recently was the research conducted? 3. Have the findings been replicated by other studies?
    • The quality can be found by a quick skim of the information and the date published should be posted near the top or bottom of the article. As for finding replicated articles, google the topic and skim similar articles.
    • Find a scholarly, peer-reviewed research article to use for Short Formal Assignment 4: Scholarly Article Analysis. Skim through the article to prepare for Assignment 4. Write (or copy and paste) the APA citation for the article here.
      • Juschka, D. M. (Ed.). (2006). Feminism in the Study of Religion (1st ed). London: Continuum.

Reading Reflection #7: Evidence Part 1

  1. In class we have been working on identifying arguments in written material. You’ll remember that an argument must have both a conclusion and reasons. The next step in evaluating information critically is looking for the evidence that supports the reasons. Summarize, in your own words, the textbook’s definition of evidence (don’t forget to provide an in-text citation).
    • Evidence is defined as information that is backed up or justifies the dependability of a factual statement given by the communicator (Browne, M. N. 2018).
  2. Provide a brief definition of each of the four different types of evidence discussed in this chapter (personal experience, case examples, testimonials, and appeals to authority). What is a strength and a potential problem with the validity and/or reliability of each of the four types of evidence?
    • Personal experience use memories or past personal encounters as evidence to support a belief. A weakness of personal experience is that it is not a representative sample and may fall into a hasty generalization. A strength is that some outcomes may be possible and may be backed my multiple people. 
    • Case examples are detailed descriptions or stories that are based on observations or interviews that may be in depth or shallow that appeal to peoples emotions. A weakness is that they can appeal to peoples emotions and make people believe that it is proof rather than a story. A strength is they can create images with the details and help people relate to the concept in more depth.
    • Testimonials are personal experiences that provide statement of value that impact how much something should influence us. A weakness is that individuals differ in selectivity, personal interest, omitted information, and human factor. A strength is that it can be used to persuade individuals when used correctly, used most often in commercials, ads, and movies. 
    • Appeals to authority is using a professional, or expert, to have access to certain facts and qualifications to provide more facts. A weakness is that authorities often disagree on specific topics. A strength is that most professionals or experts spend lots of time researching the information they are experts on which makes their word stronger. 
  3. Briefly summarize the article and describe the evidence the author provides. How reliable do you think the evidence is, given the topic of the article, and why? Include an APA citation for the article.
    • The article I choose was 5 Ways Life Would be Better if it Were Always Daylight Savings Time from This article claims, through appeals to authority and case examples, that turning the clocks permanently forward would be better for Americans. They state that there would be decreased crime, less rush hour crashes resulting in lives saved, energy saved, improved sleep, and recreation and commerce flourishing. I believe that the evidence is reliable because of the amount of research the author has done, seen through the use of graphs and statistics to back up their research. The author also provides case examples to each your emotional side that builds their argument. 
    • Calandrillo, S. (2020, March 3). 5 Ways Life Would Be Better If It Were Always Daylight Savings Time. The Conversation.