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Topic: [math-learn] Can Education Research Be "Scientific"? What's "Scientific"? (was
"in Defense of. . . .")

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Richard Hake

Posts: 1,251
From: Woodland Hills, CA 91367
Registered: 12/4/04
[math-learn] Can Education Research Be "Scientific"? What's "Scientific"? (was
"in Defense of. . . .")

Posted: Nov 1, 2012 3:44 PM
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Some subscribers to Math-Learn might be interested in a recent post
"Can Education Research Be 'Scientific'? What's 'Scientific'? (was
'in Defense of. . . .') " [Hake (2012)]. The abstract reads:

ABSTRACT: In response to my post "In Defense of the NRC's 'Scientific
Research in Education' " [Hake (2012a)] at <>
[response by Greeno at <>], PhysLrnR's Noah
Podolefsky (2012) at <<>> (here and below <<. .
.>> signifies that access may require filling out a form to obtain a
Listserv password).

(a) Pointed to articles (1) "Is the National Research Council
Committee's Report on Scientific Research in Education Scientific? On
Trusting the Manifesto" [Popkewitz (2004)] at
<>.; (2) "Causal Explanation, Qualitative
Research, and Scientific Inquiry in Education" [Maxwell (2004)] at
<>; and (3) "A Discourse that Disciplines,
Governs, and Regulates: The National Research Council's Report on
Scientific Research in Education" [Bloch (2004)] at
<>; stating that "these papers argue that the NRC
book is incomplete at best, and at worst a cartoonish caricature of

(b) Implied that the NRC's report "Scientific Research in Education"
[Shavelson & Towne (2002)] at <> did not
adequately reflect the way science works, a topic discussed in a
14-post thread PhysLrnR thread "Should the History of Science Be
Rated X?" of 9-13 July 2012 at <<>>.

In this post I:

A. Argue that Podolefsky's claim that the articles by Popkewitz,
Maxwell, and Bloch show that the NRC's report is (1)"incomplete" has
been addressed by the authors of the report, and (2) "at worst a
cartoonish caricature of science" is an overstatement.

B. Argue that Podolefsky's apparent implication (please correct me if
I'm wrong) that the way science *actually works* is contrary to the
way it's *claimed to work* in the NRC report is incorrect.

C. Provide a bibliography related to the questions "Can Education
Research Be 'Scientific'?" and "What's 'Scientific'?"

To access the complete 75 kB post please click on <>.

Richard Hake, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Indiana University
Links to Articles: <>
Links to Socratic Dialogue Inducing (SDI) Labs: <>
Academia: <>
Blog: <>
GooglePlus: <>
Twitter: <>

"It is not enough to observe, experiment, theorize, calculate and
communicate; we must also argue, criticize, debate, expound,
summarize, and otherwise transform the information that we have
obtained individually into reliable, well established, public
- John Ziman (1969): "Information, Communication, Knowledge," Nature
224 (5217): 324 online at <>.

REFERENCES [URL shortened by <> and accessed on 01 Nov 2012.]
Hake, R.R. 2012. "Can Education Research Be 'Scientific'? What's
'Scientific'? (was 'in Defense of. . . .') "; online on the OPEN!
AERA-L archives at <>. Post of 31 Oct 2012
19:34:16-0700 to AERA-L and Net-Gold. The abstract and link to the
complete post are being transmitted to several discussion lists and
are also on my blog "Hake'sEdStuff" at
<> with a provision for comments.

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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