hierarchy of the sciences

(redirected from Hierarchy of knowledge)
Also found in: Wikipedia.
Hierarchy of the sciencesclick for a larger image
Fig. 12 Hierarchy of the sciences. According to this view of the sciences, first proposed by Comte (1798-1857), the sciences can be arranged in ascending order of complexity, with sciences higher in the hierarchy dependent, but not only dependent, on those below. Thus, sociology makes assumptions about the physical and biological world, but at the same time also involves an ‘emergent’ level of analysis different from and not reducible to those below.

hierarchy of the sciences

a view of the sciences, first propounded by COMTE, in which the different sciences are seen as emerging in a definite sequence, with each science in the hierarchy being dependent upon, while also different in character from, and not simply reducible to, those below it (see Fig. 12). Though Comte saw a basic unity between the sciences (see POSITIVISM), sociology, as the ‘Queen of the sciences’ heading this hierarchy, is a synthesizing science, more complex than those disciplines below it.

Comte's view of the hierarchical arrangement of the sciences is still accepted in general terms (e.g. see Rose, 1973). However, the precise way in which sociology is 'S cientific’, and the extent of its differentiation from natural science, is much disputed.

One reason why sociology can be seen as dependent upon, but not reducible to, other sciences, is the number and the complexity of the variables involved. Thus, higher-level concepts, and accounts which simplify and summarize the many variables and relationships involved, are unavoidable. In biology and in sociology, however, where organisms pursue ends, and human actors are motivated by ‘meanings’, entirely new levels of analysis are introduced in which any simple reduction is unlikely to succeed. However, the precise implications of such new ‘levels’ for sociology are controversial, and often different from Comte's. See also REDUCTION, REDUCTIONISM, SUPERORGANIC, MEANINGFUL UNDERSTANDING AND EXPLANATION, MIND, HERMENEUTICS, VERSTEHEN.

References in periodicals archive ?
Education at all grade levels and the postsecondary level must adhere to what is called the hierarchy of knowledge.
Discuss the importance of the dental hygiene scholarly identity to advancing the dental hygiene discipline and its structural hierarchy of knowledge to promote the public's oral health
Could it be that dental hygienists are not fully aware of the discipline's hierarchy of knowledge and of the importance of developing a "Scholarly Identity" (1) related to it?
Of these, the insignificance of man, the limitations of reason, a scepticism towards humanism, a preoccupation with mysticism, an overemphasis on rituals and personal piety as ideals of spiritual perfection, the hierarchy of knowledge, reverence for savants of the past at the expense of contemporary thinkers, and dogmatic reliance on selective traditions as absolute and immutable are analysed.
Gagne's Hierarchy of Knowledge outlines nine events that progress from foundational knowledge to higher levels of learning.
The first appendix describes a hierarchy of knowledge with theology at the apex, and the second appendix uses a striking illustration from solar radiation to describe what God does through the cross.
As a logical outcome of this severance of modern science from the hierarchy of knowledge, the highest level anyone can achieve by investigating the properties of water by means of modern science alone is that of mere wonder (tahayyur); a necessary, but only the first step toward a true gnosis of the nature of things as they really are.
While free-thinking philosophers such as Diderot, Voltaire and Rousseau criticised dogma, questioned superstition and challenged the status quo of the hierarchy of knowledge, the spirit of their inquiries surely spread to the visual arts.
In the concept hierarchy of knowledge map, the concept in the upper (more abstract) level involves concepts in the lower (more specific) level.
While Goulding focuses on their different methods for measuring parallax, Johnston examines Dee's influence on Digges's early work and traces their eventual divergence with respect to the place of mathematics in a hierarchy of knowledge.
Plato's epistomological system - described in his simile of the divided line - stated that mathematical forms reside just below the immutable and eternal higher forms of truth in the hierarchy of knowledge.
The use of levels or intervals communicates a clear hierarchy of knowledge and skills.