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The Positivism And Interpretivism Philosophy Essay

The book of Business Research Methods gives me guidance for how to do business studies and how to carry out research project. In the first part of the book tells me the relationship between theory and research, in the detail it’s a explain of how to combine the theory and research during the business studies process. (Page: 4)

1a. What is meant by epistemological considerations?

Epistemological concerns the study of knowledge and what constitutes acceptable knowledge in a field of study? Epistemology is a kind of using the same principles, procedures, and ethos as the natural sciences study to explore the nature of human knowledge, structure, the relationship of recognizing the objective reality, the premise and basis of knowledge. The position that affirms the importance of imitating the natural sciences is invariably associated with an epistemological position known as positivism. (Page: 15)

1b. Explain in concrete terms the differences between the so-called positivism and interpretivism?

Positivism: (Page: 15-1.7)

Positivism is a kind way of epistemological position that claims to use the natural sciences methods to study and beyond of reality society. In the book, there are some principles of using positivism.

Positivism’s principles:

1. Only phenomena and hence knowledge confirmed by the senses can genuinely be warranted as knowledge (the principle of phenomenalism).

2. The purpose of theory is to generate hypotheses that can be tested and that will thereby allow explanations of laws to be assessed (the principle of phenomenalism).

3. Knowledge is arrived at through the gathering of facts that provide the basis for laws (the principle of phenomenalism).

4. Science must (and presumably can) be conducted in a way that is value free (that is, objective).

5. There is a clear distinction between scientific statements and normative statements and belief that the former are the true domain of scientist.

This last principle is implied by the first because the truth or otherwise of normative statements cannot confirmed by the senses.

Interpretivism: (Page: 16)

Interpretivism is a term given to a contrasting epistemology to positivism.

It is necessary for the research to understand differences between humans in our role as social actors.

There are differences between conducting research among people rather than physical objects.

To enter the social world of our research subjects, understand their world from their point of view.

(Page: 16)

Interpretivism arose as scientists felt that human beings were not puppets to react to stimuli in a prescribed manner. They were active and purposeful and can respond to stimuli in different ways depending upon their interpretation. Interpretivists describe human beings as having intent and the power to interpret;they say that human beings have the capability to construct their surroundings rather than being a mere spectators to what is happening around them. These scientists stressed the thinking, intentions and behaviors of human beings more than positivists thereby drawing conclusions that were more realistic and perhaps more valid also. Interpretivists talk about shared consciousness as the brain behind many of the concepts in a society.

2a. What is meant by ontological considerations?

Ontological considerations: (Page: 20)

Questions of social ontology are concerns with the view on nature of reality, the study of nature of existence.

The core question of this part is whether the social entity can and should be considered objective entities which have the truth external to social actors, or whether they can and should be considered social constructions built up from the perceptions and actions of social actors. (Bryman 2004: 16)

These positions are frequently referred to respectively as objectivism and constructionism.

2b. Explain in concrete terms the differences between objectivism and constructionism?

Objectivism: (Page: 21 1.13)

Objectivism is an ontological position that asserts that social phenomena and their meanings have an existence that is independent of social actors. It implies that social phenomena and the categories that we use in everyday discourse have an existence that is independent or separate from actors.

Constructionism: (Page: 22 1.14)

Constructionism is an ontological position (often also referred to as constructivism) which asserts that social phenomena and their meanings are continually being accomplished by social actors. It implies that social phenomena and categories are not only produced through social interaction but that they are in a constant state of revision.

Objectivism and constructivism is diametrically opposite assumptions about reality, mind, thought, meaning and symbolism. The objective belief is that the world is real. The reality is the external awareness. Since it is sees the world as real it assumes that learners have the same understanding of this reality. The reality can be structured model to guide a learner. Constructivist perspective requires learners to create their own reality based on his experiences and views. The constructivist point that not a reality. Because the reality is a product of personal views and experiences are unique individuals many reality can exist. The objectivism think the role of the mind as a processor of abstract symbols thought of as symbols of the builders of the Constructivist perspectives. Objectivism sees the role of the mind as a processor of abstract symbols while constructivism views the mind as a builder of symbols.

Relationship of epistemology and ontology to business research (Page: 23)

Every science has its own ontology, epistemology and consequently its own methodologies. So when the business research

Ontology defines the fundamental categories of reality. Domain ontology as distinct from formal ontology is related to focus of study. Each research field has its own ontology. Epistemology defines how we can know and reason that reality. The methodologies of each of these two scientists have followed as different systems of investigative techniques within their focus of study. They use different scientific methods studying different domains with different epistemology and ontology.

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