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Regular version of the site
Master 2020/2021

Introduction to Scientific Thinking and Modeling

Area of studies: Applied Mathematics and Informatics
When: 1 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: offline
Open to: students of one campus
Master’s programme: Applied Statistics with Network Analysis
Language: English
ECTS credits: 4

Course Syllabus

Abstract

Some students lose interest in academic careers since many courses are structured in a way that does not encourage open discussion, critical analysis, and creativity. This course is designed to provide an opportunity for students to develop their skills in reading and analyzing scientific articles, implementing their own academic ideas. As part of this course, students will be able to learn how to formulate research questions, make hypotheses based on literature reviews, analyze and interpret data, and build models. Modeling is a complex concept. There are both simple models that explain the linear interaction between two variables, and complex ones, which take into account the smallest details that affect the results. Simulation helps to understand the complexity of our world and predict the future. This course will examine the models that are the basis for many specialties: econometrics, political science, sociology, management and many others. In addition to critical analysis skills, this course will explore a number of models that will enable perspective scientists to conduct their own researches.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • to foster critical thinking by developing the scientific philosophy of each student
  • to enable students to recognize philosophical differences between scholars
  • to help students view their chosen field of science in the context of intellectual pursuits and human nature
  • to give practical skills to apply models depending on the chosen topic and approach to study
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • have working skills in formulating and presenting better arguments, both orally and in writing form
  • be able to conduct researches in various fields of science
  • know how to communicate effectively as part of a team
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Why ponder science?
  • Applying Philosophy to Science
  • Influences of Beliefs and Values
  • Simple modeling
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Homeworks
    There will be several homework assignments that will provide additional hands-on practice for the concepts we’ve learned in class and practiced during the seminar. Homeworks will be assigned as needed throughout the semester
  • non-blocking Final presentation
    During the last weeks of course students should submit their presentation on research they are planning to conduct. The presentation should include topic formulation and proposal of the planned research. Students should show gained skills on the research project preparation.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.4 * Final presentation + 0.6 * Homeworks
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Lakatos, I. (1969). II——Criticism and the Methodology of Scientific Research Programmes. https://doi.org/10.1093/aristotelian/69.1.149

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Richard Paul, & Linda Elder. (2019). The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts and Tools: Vol. 8th ed. The Foundation for Critical Thinking.
  • Waller, A. (2010). Philosophical Foundations for the Practices of Ecology. Biologist, 57(3), 150.