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    #250436 - 08/27/23 01:54 AM Science is never settled
    indigo Offline

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 5228
    Science is never settled. What is believed to be true at a point in time may often be questioned, and later proven to be either untrue, or only true under narrow, limited circumstances.

    Acknowledging that science is never settled, it may be important to use caution to not overstate preferred findings, nor to cast aspersions on findings which may counter the preferred outcomes.

    That said, it has been found that wording a research report strongly, and with great certainty, may benefit the authors by leading to greater publishing opportunities, citations, increased grants, and more.

    "The Science family of journals is published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)."
    Science continues to publish the very best in research across the sciences, with articles that consistently rank among the most cited in the world.
    Science seeks to publish those papers that are most influential in their fields or across fields and that will significantly advance scientific understanding...
    . . .
    Selected papers ... should merit recognition ...
    . . .
    Science ... editors are committed to ... upholding high standards that support reproducibility of published research.
    Might a focus on being "influential," combined with "recognition" and "reproducibility" result in an over-emphasis on commercialization, persuasive presentation of "being right," while discounting or excluding other possibilities... leading to an under-emphasis on continued questioning, curiosity, and ongoing scientific inquiry?

    A body of work published by Science has been analyzed by Scientometrics.

    Scientometrics - An International Journal for all Quantitative Aspects of the Science of Science, Communication in Science and Science Policy
    Originally Posted By: brief excerpt, Scientometrics
    Scientometrics is concerned with the quantitative features and characteristics of science and scientific research. Emphasis is placed on investigations in which the development ... of science and of the mechanism of scientific research are studied by means of (statistical) mathematical methods...
    Volume 128, issue 8, August 2023
    Mingxin Yao, Ying Wei, & Huiyu Wang
    Content type: Original Paper Published: 31 May 2023 Pages: 4541 - 4558
    link -
    Originally Posted By: Abstract
    Hedges are important in academic writing since they indicate uncertainty and tentativeness about academic knowledge. However, few studies explore how hedges have changed in academic writing overtime. Among the existing studies, there is also divergent understandings. The current case study traced the diachronic development of hedges that express doubt and uncertainty in the full texts of Science research articles from 1997 to 2021. Our findings show that the use of such hedges has significantly decreased in the past 25 years in the research articles of the Journal Science. In addition, we propose that the drop of such hedges in Science research articles may be an implicit writing strategy for research promotion, and therefore may correlate with the rising linguistic positivity in academic writing. Our hypothesis was initially confirmed by the significant correlation between the evolution of hedges and Yuan and Yao’s (Scientometrics 127:1–17, 2022) sentiment scores in academic writing. Our findings may reveal a bigger picture of promoting research by adopting not only explicit strategies such as more positive language (Yuan and Yao in Scientometrics 127:1–17, 2022) but also subtle and implicit writing strategies such as reducing uncertainty. Finally, we discussed the implications of this study for peer reviewers, editors, and researchers.
    Some may say that *WHERE* hedge words appear would be important for revealing whether research findings are overstated/exaggerated or appropriately expressed in moderation, according to sample size and the strength of results... or whether hedge words are used to marginalize and minimalize any potential alternative explanations.

    A few thoughts:
    - Science is never settled.
    - Words Matter.
    - Correlation does not imply causation.
    - Scientific method is not consensus; Consensus is not scientific method.
    - Scientific method is unbiased; reports on the outcomes of research should also be.
    - "Res ipsa loquitur," Latin for "the thing itself speaks" or "the very thing speaks," often also interpreted as "the thing speaks for itself."

    #250462 - 09/04/23 09:44 AM Re: Science is never settled [Re: indigo]
    indigo Offline

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 5228
    What is Hedging In Academic Writing?
    Enago Academy
    July 12, 2023
    link -
    Originally Posted By: brief excerpt from article
    Following are a few hedging words and phrases that can be used...

    Introductory verbs – seem, tend, look like, appear to be, think, believe, doubt, be sure, indicate, suggest

    Certain lexical verbs – believe, assume, suggest

    Modal Adverbs – possibly, perhaps, conceivably

    That clauses – It could be the case that…, it might be suggested that…, there is every hope that…


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