Q:

What does empiricism mean?

A:

Empiricism means to use an empirical method or practice and refers to the belief that empirical methods are the best way to achieve understanding in scientific or philosophical endeavors, according to Dictionary.com. Empirical methods are those that rely on experience or experiment. Empirical methods rely on observation alone, without regard to scientific theory.

In philosophy, the doctrine of empiricism states that all knowledge is derived from sensory experience. The belief in this doctrine is that the human mind did not inherit a set of concepts with which it views the world, as through a lens. Rather, philosophical empiricism holds that sensory experience is the only source from which knowledge is derived.

In medicine, the term empiricism is often used in a negative context, and it implies undue reliance on experience. It can also imply quackery.

Terms related to empiricism include empiricist, anti-empiricist, pro-empiricist and non-empiricist. Empiricism first came into use in the 1650s as a medical term, and the word came into general use in the late 1700s. An example of a sentence using empiricism is: "Experience is the greatest teacher of any scientist who must stay rooted in the methods of empiricism if he is to discover the truth."

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What does "research is organized curiosity" mean?

    A:

    "Research is formalized curiosity" refers to the process by which someone diligently seeks knowledge while pursuing a passion for a particular subject, according to Wired. The original quote is from Zora Neal Hurston's 1942 autobiography "Dust Tracks on a Road" in which she explains why she didn't do well in her anthropology classes in college.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does "false cause and effect" mean in logic?

    A:

    In logic, "false cause and effect" is when one event is said to have caused another event just because the first event preceded the second event. It is a logical fallacy because it uses sequence as the only evidence without considering other factors.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What did Aristotle contribute to the understanding of atoms?

    A:

    Aristotle's contribution to the understanding of atoms was to help dispel the commonly held belief of his time that the indivisible building blocks of matter were uniform in nature and had no unique or characteristic properties. He argued that the atoms of a specific substance must instead maintain the unique properties of that substance rather than all atoms remaining similar in nature. Aristotle also noted that some substances appeared to be pure and that others were formed from the combinations of these pure substances, an observation which led to the understanding that elements could be combined to form compounds with new and unique properties.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does solar mean?

    A:

    Dictionary.com defines the adjective "solar" as "of or pertaining to the sun." A second and less utilized definition is "a private or upper chamber in a medieval English house."

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore