Essay Example on How were your classes today James Hi Maria my classes were quite Interesting

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How were your classes today James Hi Maria my classes were quite interesting Particularly during the morning session we were evaluating several models of gravity At that point our professor made an intriguing statement Robust knowledge requires both consensus and disagreement We had an interesting discussion in class however I would like to discuss this claim with you since we have contrasting fields of study M Intriguing indeed However before delving any deeper into this conversation I think it will be useful to define some of the key terms within the claim For example I believe that robust knowledge refers to knowledge that can withstand criticism and is indisputable Therefore when your professor made that claim I think he was referring to the process of acquiring robust knowledge rather than the knowledge itself Would you agree J Yes Consensus is also an interesting term if there is consensus within a group of people regarding an issue then the majority of those people are in agreement with each other about the solution or the concept being discussed 



That would be my definition of consensus What are your thoughts M I agree and disagreement would simply be the opposite of that Tell me what were some of the initial questions that came to your mind when you heard that statement I know I have some in mind J Well since I am studying to become a scientist the first thought that came to my mind was What role does evidence have in the development of consensus I believe that this is a very significant question to ask since different fields of study have different methods of gathering knowledge In the world of science one of the major factors that affect the research s credibility and validity is the methodology that is used which includes the data collection sources of errors and reliability and accuracy of the equipment used Furthermore statistical analysis is paramount in almost any scientific research paper focused on experimental methods that test a theory and for reliable statistical analysis there needs to be as many data plots as possible to increase the confidence of the results In my personal experience as well going through high school and completing various lab reports we were always told that the more results we had the better Kim 2017 Hence the more reliable a research paper is the more likely it is that there will be consensus over the findings of that paper since information is used to back up hypotheses Therefore evidence plays a very significant role in the development of consensus 



This must be quite contrasting to the process of gathering knowledge in religious studies am I right M That is an interesting thought and you re right the method by which we get knowledge in religious systems is very different from the scientific process because in this area of knowledge and others such as History the source of knowledge is primarily based on texts and scriptures that were originally written centuries and in multiple different languages These texts were then translated and interpreted by different individuals from all over the world and over many many years Do you see where the problem lies in this way of acquiring knowledge J Yes so what you re saying is that the personal opinions and perceptions of those who translate and interpret the texts over generations have an incredible impact on the knowledge that is created Hence there is the issue of subjectivity and the fact that the meaning of the texts is open to interpretation That is quite interesting because in fact the Sapir Whorf hypothesis Williams n d which is a part of linguistic relativity can be applied in this case and it states that the cognitive behaviour of individuals is greatly impacted by the language that they use In other words people speaking different languages will have different perceptions of the world around them M Exactly and so although evidence is significant in religious knowledge systems as most religions are based around some sort of a holy text or story the process of gaining knowledge is quite dependent on the one who is studying and analyzing those pieces of evidence 



Therefore in terms of consensus I do not believe that evidence is the determining factor Instead it is the interpretation that is most favoured amongst the believers of that particular religion Wouldn't you agree that even in the scientific process there exists subjectivity to some extent J Definitely This is what is known as research bias where scientists performing the research influence the research in such a way that it portrays a certain outcome For example research bias exists if there was an experimental error and the team failed to consider of all the possible variables Additionally research bias Shuttleworth 2009 is more prominent while conducting qualitative research which again introduces the perception of the researcher and therefore their perception of the results might be different to that of others Therefore although there is less subjectivity in the scientific process as quite a lot of research done is quantitative however it is not possible to truly eliminate bias from research This idea of subjectivity just made me realise another question in relation to the claim made by my professor To what extent is robustness of knowledge proportional to consensus and or disagreement M I m glad you asked that because in the field of religious studies I believe that consensus directly linked with the robustness of knowledge Firstly as I mentioned before the knowledge that is acquired is based on the interpretations of different individuals However the views that are generally agreed upon are religious scholars priests etc Therefore authority is based on interpretation which means that if one was to disagree it could be seen as blasphemy and that idea or opinion would be dismissed almost immediately this shows how disagreement would not necessarily work in making knowledge robust in the religious context


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