5 pages/≈1375 words
State of Knowledge Paper: Rules and Predetermined Solutions (Dissertation Sample)
State of Knowledge Paper
State of Knowledge Paper
Undertaking research is fundamentally like solving puzzles; it is whereby puzzles have rules and have predetermined solutions. The conspicuous feature of undertaking research, as demonstrated by several theorists, is to discover the known in advance. The fact is that the range of projected outcomes is small when compared to the possible outcomes of a given research. When the result of research does not fall into the estimated result scope, then the research becomes a failure, which means that the “significance” is unreached. Therefore, the spread of researches that find the anticipated results guarantees that the paradigm or theory will flourish and is publishable. One of the aspects that the scientific community attains with a paradigm is the criterion of selecting puzzles, whereas the paradigm is a given, that can be implicit to have solutions (Ritzer, 2015. pp.10).
In his landmark book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas S. Kuhn discusses science within the context of paradigm. He argues the paradigm change throughout history; he calls the change paradigm shifts or revolutions. Kuhn claims that scientists typically take part in what he refers to “normal science” in which research is powerfully founded on one or more past scientific accomplishment. The community recognizes these accomplishments for a time because they provide the basis for further practice. The accomplishments underscored by Kuhn are the “paradigms” (such as Newton’s theory of gravity). In his book, Kuhn explains the third phase, which is a scientific revolution. He emphasizes that the overturning of the previous paradigm will yield a new paradigm. Kuhn argues that revolutionary science is vastly different from the normal science. Normal science is about the compelling nature to fit scientific theories rather than the other way round. The author argues that the revolutions come about because of the crisis in the field of science. The revolutions completely and totally replace previous paradigms (Kuhn, 1996, p.34-43).
Normal science is about the compelling nature to fit scientific theories. Thus, normal science is about gathering new data, experiments, theories, and puzzle pieces, which will support a certain theory. Normal science creates a puzzle that results in problem solving, whereby the problems are mainly the puzzles. Furthermore, Kuhn argues that people undertake research because results add to the scope and accuracy with which the paradigm/theory is applicable (Kuhn, 1996, p.34-43). The manner of obtaining results typically remains very much in doubt, which is usually the challenge of the puzzle. Accordingly, solving the puzzle may be fun, and specialist puzzle-solvers make a nice living off it. To group a puzzle (as an authentic research question), a given problem should be characterized by more than the guaranteed solution. However, the solutions must be consistent with model presumptions (Kuhn, 1996, p. 34-43).
In the article Discrimination in a Low-Wage Labor Market: A Field Experiment, the Kuhn element comes out clear as the study is founded on experiment. The study wants to discover the known regarding racial discrimination in the low-wage markets and determines how it results in economic inequality in the community. Many theories have argued that discrimination remains a significant cause of economic inequality. The study is a platform for increasing the existing the knowledge of discrimination. It supports the Kuhn’s argument in his book that research chiefly entails solving puzzles (Pager, Western, &Bonikowski, 2009 pp.778). The study has a problem that constitutes the main inquiry of the authors. The theory examined by the authors is that there is discrimination in the low-wage labor market. It is the puzzle, as described by Kuhn, which needs a solution. The solution comes through the experiment undertaken to prove the assumption. The study investigated racial discrimination in the labor, low-wage labor markets by comparing the wages of minorities and whites through statistical methods and by controlling human capital characteristics. In the study, it became clear that discrimination existed in the low-wage labor markets, resulting in economic inequality and that the minority suffer the most. The results of the study came as expected; they were in line with Kuhn’s arguments. The study creates knowledge because it provides facts on an issue unproved before. The new knowledge brings an understa...
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