Theory Assessment Outcomes
What outcomes can possibly obtain as a result of an assessment of a theory by a method? What is the complete list of theory assessment outcomes?
When a theory is assessed by a method, a certain theory assessment outcome obtains. The question here is what outcomes can possibly obtain in theory assessment?
In Scientonomy, the accepted answer to the question is:
- The possible outcomes of theory assessment are satisfied, not satisfied, and inconclusive.
|Community||Accepted From||Acceptance Indicators||Still Accepted||Accepted Until||Rejection Indicators|
|Scientonomy||1 January 2016||This is when the community accepted its first answer to the question, Theory Assessment Outcomes (Barseghyan-2015), which indicates that the question itself is legitimate.||Yes|
|Theory Assessment Outcomes (Barseghyan-2015)||The possible outcomes of theory assessment are accept, not accept, and inconclusive.||2015|
|Theory Assessment Outcomes (Patton-Overgaard-Barseghyan-2017)||The possible outcomes of theory assessment are satisfied, not satisfied, and inconclusive.||2017|
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|Community||Theory||Accepted From||Accepted Until|
|Scientonomy||Theory Assessment Outcomes (Barseghyan-2015)||1 January 2016||29 November 2017|
|Scientonomy||Theory Assessment Outcomes (Patton-Overgaard-Barseghyan-2017)||29 November 2017|
|Modification||Community||Date Suggested||Summary||Verdict||Verdict Rationale||Date Assessed|
|Sciento-2017-0004||Scientonomy||5 February 2017||Accept the reformulation of the second law which explicitly links theory assessment outcomes with theory acceptance/unacceptance. To that end, accept three new definitions for theory assessment outcomes (satisfied, not satisfied, and inconclusive) as well as the new ontology of theory assessment outcomes, and accept the new definition of employed method.||Accepted||The new formulation of the law became accepted as a result of a communal consensus. It was noted by the commentators that the "modification provides a much improved formulation of the 2nd law".c1 It was noted that the new formulation "decouples the method from acceptance outcomes" and "is needed to avoid a contradiction for cases where assessment by the method is inconclusive, but the theory is accepted".c2 It was agreed that the new law eliminates two of the major flaws of the previous formulation. First, it clearly states the relations between different assessment outcomes and the actual theory acceptance/unacceptance. Second, it clearly forbids certain conceivable courses of events and, thus, doesn't sounds like a tautology.c3||29 November 2017|
Currently, the definition of theory assessment outcomes states that the outcome of theory assessment is not necessarily conclusive; an inconclusive outcome ("can" be accepted") is also conceivable. 1
In Scientonomy, the accepted answer to the question is Theory Assessment Outcomes (Patton-Overgaard-Barseghyan-2017).
Theory Assessment Outcomes (Patton-Overgaard-Barseghyan-2017) states: "The possible outcomes of theory assessment are satisfied, not satisfied, and inconclusive."
According to this ontology of theory assessment outcomes, when a theory is assessed by a method, one of the three following outcomes can obtain:1
- Satisfied: the theory is deemed to conclusively meet the requirements of the method employed at the time.
- Not Satisfied: the theory is deemed to conclusively not meet the requirements of the method employed at the time.
- Inconclusive: it is unclear whether or not the requirements of the method employed at the time are met.
While the first two assessment outcomes are conclusive, the third outcome is inconclusive, as it permits more than one possible course of action. Thus, in this view, a theory's assessment outcome is not necessarily conclusive; an inconclusive outcome is also conceivable.
This ontology is assumed by the second law of scientific change as formulated by Patton, Overgaard, and Barseghyan in 2017.
This question is a subquestion of Ontology of Scientific Change.
It has the following sub-topic(s):
This topic is also related to the following topic(s):
- Barseghyan, Hakob. (2015) The Laws of Scientific Change. Springer.