The scientific method is about proof or disproof of hypotheses. But only in maths do you have irrefutable proof. In the world of experimentation, we use a significance threshold. Usually at 5%.
How is that threshold determined? Scientific consensus. /Thread
The scientific method itself is formed by scientific consensus...
...on what works to strip away truth from false understandings.
We agreed together over time what statistical tools to use and tested their robustness over myriad examples.
But the notion of a discrete “method” entirely divorced from consensus of practitioners- is false.
Lifelong science practitioners can give insights into thorny problems within science.
“Idealism increases in direct proportion to one's distance from the problem.”
And so it is with the scientific method. One paper does not always (or often) prove a theory. It usually needs repeat support from different angles of test
This is what I mean by scientific conclusions “crystalising”.
A failure of thinking from many is to view all science from a 1920s physics perspective (taught in schools). Hypothesis —> test. Yes/no? Done.
Why doesn’t this always apply?...
In biology and very complex systems, it’s different. Say you knock out a gene in a mouse. The effect will differ depending upon the ‘genetic background’.
The answer does “crystalise” out over time.
...and it works, bitches.