On the permissiveness of the abductive theory of method

Department of Psychology, University of Canterbury, Private Bag 4800, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Journal of Clinical Psychology (Impact Factor: 2.12). 09/2008; 64(9):1037-45. DOI: 10.1002/jclp.20507
Source: PubMed


In this article, the author examines Romeijn's (2008) contention that the account of theory construction in the abductive theory of scientific method suffers from the problem of the underdetermination of theories by empirical evidence. Following Romeijn, the author focuses on the issue of underdetermination as it affects the method of exploratory factor analysis, the strategy of analogical modeling, and the theory of explanatory coherence. The author argues that in each case there are sufficient methodological resources available to researchers to use these methods to good effect. Additionally, he comments on the normative force of the abductive theory of method.

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    • "In his 2012 article, he described differences between his understanding and other descriptions of abduction within qualitative research (e.g. Haig, 2008). Rennie's model is a contribution to theories of inference, in that it builds upon Peirce's model but incorporates education and embodied experiencing , enabling it to account for the substance of an abduction – which Peirce failed to do. "
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    ABSTRACT: This special issue of the Journal of Clinical Psychology comprises six theoretical papers that are concerned with the interconnected topics of scientific method, abductive inference, and clinical reasoning. The first four papers deal with the nature and limitations of a broad abductive theory of scientific method, and its application to clinical reasoning and case formulation. These are followed by three papers which in turn consider the prospects of using explanatory criteria to appraise competing models of psychopathy, examine the merits of a number of different psychometric perspectives on the assessment of psychopathology, and reject a core supposition of the orthodox approach to hypothesis testing.
    Journal of Clinical Psychology 09/2008; 64(9):1013-8. DOI:10.1002/jclp.20505 · 2.12 Impact Factor
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