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Lies, Damned Lies, and Science: How to Sort through the Noise Around Global Warming, the Latest Health Claims, and Other Scientific Controversies
 
 

Lies, Damned Lies, and Science: How to Sort through the Noise Around Global Warming, the Latest Health Claims, and Other Scientific Controversies [Kindle Edition]

Sherry Seethaler

Kindle-Preis: EUR 8,64 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

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Produktbeschreibungen

Kurzbeschreibung

“Comprehensive, readable, and replete with current, useful examples, this book provides a much-needed explanation of how to be a critical consumer of the scientific claims we encounter in our everyday lives.”

—April Cordero Maskiewicz, Department of Biology, Point Loma Nazarene University

 

“Seethaler’s book helps the reader look inside the workings of science and gain a deeper understanding of the pathway that is followed by a scientific finding—from its beginnings in a research lab to its appearance on the nightly news.”

—Jim Slotta, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto

 

“How I wish science was taught this way! Seethaler builds skills for critical thinking and evaluation. The book is rich with examples that not only illustrate her points beautifully, they also make it very interesting and fun to read.”

—Julia R. Brown, Director, Targacept, Inc.

 

Don’t Get Hoodwinked! Make Sense of Health and Science News...and Make Smarter Decisions!

 

Every day, there’s a new scientific or health controversy. And every day, it seems as if there’s a new study that contradicts what you heard yesterday. What’s really going on? Who’s telling the truth? Who’s faking it? What do scientists actually know–and what don’t they know? This book will help you cut through the confusion and make sense of it all–even if you’ve never taken a science class! Leading science educator and journalist Dr. Sherry Seethaler reveals how science and health research really work...how to put scientific claims in context and understand the real tradeoffs involved...tell quality research from junk science...discover when someone’s deliberately trying to fool you...and find more information you can trust!  Nobody knows what new controversy will erupt tomorrow. But one thing’s for certain: With this book, you’ll know how to figure out the real deal–and make smarter decisions for yourself and your family!

 

Watch the news, and you’ll be overwhelmed by snippets of badly presented science: information that’s incomplete, confusing, contradictory, out-of-context, wrong, or flat-out dishonest. Defend yourself! Dr. Sherry Seethaler gives you a powerful arsenal of tools for making sense of science. You’ll learn how to think more sensibly about everything from mad cow disease to global warming—and how to make better science-related decisions in both your personal life and as a citizen.

 

You’ll begin by understanding how science really works and progresses, and why scientists sometimes disagree. Seethaler helps you assess the possible biases of those who make scientific claims in the media, and place scientific issues in appropriate context, so you can intelligently assess tradeoffs. You’ll learn how to determine whether a new study is really meaningful; uncover the difference between cause and coincidence; figure out which statistics mean something, and which don’t.

 

Seethaler reveals the tricks self-interested players use to mislead and confuse you, and points you to sources of information you can actually rely upon. Her many examples range from genetic engineering of crops to drug treatments for depression...but the techniques she teaches you will be invaluable in understanding any scientific controversy, in any area of science or health.

 

^   Potions, plots, and personalities: How science progresses, and why scientists sometimes disagree

^   Is it “cause” or merely coincidence? How to tell compelling evidence from a “good story”

^   There are always tradeoffs: How to put science and health claims in context, and understand their real implications

^   All the tricks experts use to fool you, exposed! How to recognize lies, “truthiness,” or pseudo-expertise

Synopsis

Watch the news, and you'll be overwhelmed by snippets of badly presented science: information that's incomplete, confusing, contradictory, out-of-context, wrong, or flat-out dishonest. Defend yourself! Dr. Sherry Seethaler gives you a powerful arsenal of tools for making sense of science. You'll learn how to think more sensibly about everything from mad cow disease to global warming--and how to make better science-related decisions in both your personal life and as a citizen. You'll begin by understanding how science really works and progresses, and why scientists sometimes disagree. Seethaler helps you assess the possible biases of those who make scientific claims in the media, and place scientific issues in appropriate context, so you can intelligently assess tradeoffs. You'll learn how to determine whether a new study is really meaningful; uncover the difference between cause and coincidence; figure out which statistics mean something, and which don't. Seethaler reveals the tricks self-interested players use to mislead and confuse you, and points you to sources of information you can actually rely upon.*

Potions, plots, and personalities How science progresses, and why scientists sometimes disagree * Is it "cause" or merely coincidence? How to tell compelling evidence from a "good story" * There are always tradeoffs How to put science and health claims in context, and understand their realimplications * All the tricks experts use to fool you, exposed! How to recognize lies, "truthiness," or pseudo-expertise


Produktinformation

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 992 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 210 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 0132849445
  • Gleichzeitige Verwendung von Geräten: Bis zu 5 Geräte gleichzeitig, je nach vom Verlag festgelegter Grenze
  • Verlag: FT Press; Auflage: 1 (13. Januar 2009)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B001QL5MZ0
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #483.952 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

  •  Ist der Verkauf dieses Produkts für Sie nicht akzeptabel?

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 von 5 Sternen  31 Rezensionen
77 von 80 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Critical Thinking for Everyone 4. März 2009
Von Dr H - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This book will not tell you what to think; it will teach you how to evaluate what others -want- you to think. If I were teaching a course on Critical Thinking, I would use this book as the central textbook; never before have I seen such a concise, readable coverage of the topic in a single volume. Each component of the process is identified, described, and presented with real-world examples.
At a time when everyone is trying to sell us something -- be it material goods or strange new ideas -- critical thinking is essential for survival. Whether you are trying to figure out where to take a stand on global warming, or how to not get ripped off by the local used-car salesman, this book will help. *Everyone* should read this book: I can only give it five stars here, but it rates many more. Excellent job!
40 von 41 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen An excellent guide to critical thinking 10. April 2010
Von Gaetan Lion - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
A good way to read this book is to start with the conclusion where the author shares twenty thinking tools to evaluate findings. This is an abstract of the entire book including all the critical thinking processes the author covers.

This is an excellent book that provides the qualitative critical thinking necessary for making better rational decisions regarding purchases, health care, and lifestyle. Many books impart the statistics to differentiate what is truly different from what is not. But, few books focus on framing the question correctly, understanding the biases of the stakeholders, and how to evaluate the findings. Ultimately, the qualitative thinking the author imparts is as important as the quantitative knowledge imparted by math books.

The author does an excellent job explaining how science works. It is a constant feedback loop of battling hypothesis and rebuttals that confuse the public. But, if you make an effort to understand the issue, you will grasp the evolving nuances of the arguments. Through this process our knowledge invariably advances.

Some highlights of the book include the matrix of stakeholders issues on page 34 regarding Global Warming, Drug approval, Genetically engineered food, and Mad cow disease. This matrix succinctly fleshes out all stakeholders positions on those four complex issues. The table of evidence being studied to understand climate change on page 83 is really thorough. Also, the concept of "pseudosymmetry of scientific authority" as explained on page 16 is interesting. It means the Media sometimes allocates as much print to both sides of an issue when the vast majority of the scientific community is on one side (that's why it is called pseudosymmetry). The entire chapter 5 on differentiating between cause and coincidence is excellent. Chapter 7 on interpreting statistics is also very good including its specific section on elucidating hidden confounding factors. Within this chapter, she also states the most important phrase in statistics: "results can be statistically significant without being statistically meaningful." Or given a large enough sample size, stat tests invariably uncover at least small differences which may be trivial. Chapter 9 is an interesting overview of widespread thinking flaws including anchoring, confirmation bias, confusing randomness for a trend, overgeneralization, and mistaking cause and effect. Those themes are now often covered in the trendy topic of behavioral economics. Chapter 10 discloses many websites that are helpful in investigating various claims.

On the other hand, I also found an error and a debatable position. On page 78, the diagram mapping out a clinical study should have Group 1 getting a placebo and Group 2 getting the drug. The diagram instead shows Group 1 receiving nothing and Group 2 receiving both the placebo and the drug. I bet this has confused many readers. Additionally, the mentioned concept of pseudosymmetry is very interesting. But, one should not immediately derive that science is a popularity contest and accept that when many more scientists are on one side of the issue they are right. This is not necessarily so. Thomas S. Kuhn, in his classic "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions," has exposed that correct new scientific ideas often come up against massive resistance from the scientific establishment hoisting the status quo. This suggests that sometimes pseudosymmetry is not so "pseudo" after all.

If this subject interests you, I recommend Motulsky Intuitive Biostatistics: A Nonmathematical Guide to Statistical Thinking that will provide you a strong quantitative foundation to evaluate any hypothesis. I also liked Greenhalgh How to Read a Paper: The Basics of Evidence-based Medicine and Stanovich formidable What Intelligence Tests Miss: The Psychology of Rational Thought. Both books explore various facets of Seethaler's critical thinking in greater details.
44 von 53 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Learn how to think about science in the media 30. März 2009
Von Science Goddess - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Hi, this is Joanne, a bioengineering instructor at the University of Illinois. I read science books and review them. See more at my youtube site [...]

The review for Dr. Seethaler's book begins several minutes in.
This book is a fabulous manual to help readers learn how to think critically about scientific information we are bombarded with via the news.
12 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A Truthful Review 3. Mai 2011
Von Book Shark - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Lies, Damned Lies and Science: How to sort through the noise around global warming, the latest health claims, and other scientific controversies by Dr. Sherry Seethaler

"Lies, Damned Lies and Science" is a book about critical thinking in the everyday use of science. The book helps lay people understand how science works and how to put scientific claims in the proper context. This 224-page book is composed of the following ten chapters: 1. Potions, plot, personalities: understand how science progresses and why scientists sometimes disagree, 2. Who's who?: identify those who hold stake in an issue and what their positions are, 3. Decisions, decisions: elucidate all the pros and cons of a decision, 4. Compare and contrast: place alternatives in an appropriate context to evaluate tradeoffs, 5. What happens if...?: distinguish between cause and coincidence, 6.Specific or general: recognize how broadly the conclusions from a study may be applied, 7. Fun figures: see through the number jumble, 8. Society's say: discern the relationships between science and policy, 9. All the tricks in the book: get past the ploys designed to simply bypass logic, and 10. Fitting the pieces together: know how to seek information to gain a balanced perspective.

Positives:
1. A well-written and accessible book that teaches us how to think critically about scientific claims.
2. Dr. Seethaler explains the basics of science and does so with ease. It's a testament to her prodigious knowledge of science and most importantly her ability to relay such knowledge to the masses.
3. As an accomplished educator, Dr. Seethaler makes use of multiple tools to convey her thoughts: graphs, charts, lists and accessible prose backed by supporting references.
4. The "true" scientific method.
5. Climate models.
6. Great practical examples throughout.
7. An interesting look at how scientific disputes are resolved.
8. The understanding of "pseudosymmetry of scientific authority" which is the fallacy committed by the media in which they portray scientists evenly divided between two points of view, when in reality that is not the case.
9. The all-important peer-reviewed scientific process.
10. Many hot political topics involving science discussed: Global warming, genetically engineered food, mad cow disease...to name a few.
11. Putting things in proper scientific context.
12. The differences between experimental and non-experimental studies.
13. Why certain animals and even fruit flies are studied.
14. A lot of interesting tidbits throughout the book.
15. The Gambler's Fallacy.
16. Confirmation bias...
17. Beware of vague claims and why you should.
18. Honestly where would science be without evolution?
19. How to be critical without being cynical. Excellent point.
20. The truth about why DDT was banned.
21. An excellent chapter on the twenty essential applications of the tools.
22. Links worked great!
23. Very helpful and useful list of links. Thank you.

Negatives:
1. Risk factors were not defined to my satisfaction.
2. Scientists will find this book fairly basic because it is intended for the masses.
3. I would have liked a summary chart of sorts that listed the main scientific topics and what the scientific consensus is versus the perception.

In summary, I highly recommend this book to the general public but in particular to science educators. This is a very useful and important book. Dr. Seathaler accomplishes her goal of educating the public by providing a useful toolkit to critically assess science information obtained from the media and other popular sources.

Recommendations: "Merchants of Doubt..." by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, "Science Under Siege..." Kendrick Frazier, "Why People Believe Weird Things..." by Michael Shermer, "Science Matters..." Robert M. Hazen and James Trefil, and "and "Idiot America..." by Charles P. Pierce.
11 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen `The most important product of knowledge is ignorance.' 12. April 2010
Von Jennifer Cameron-Smith - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
And this book is aimed at providing the tools to reduce ignorance.

How can a non-scientist make sense of science when so much science-related information is poorly presented, incomplete, contradictory or wrong? What tools can we use in order to assess and make sense of what is presented as fact? So much of the `information' we receive is packaged and presented in a format which makes it difficult to understand let alone analyse the underlying facts.

In this book, Dr Seethaler covers topics such as the use and misuse of statistical data; identifying logical fallacies; uncovering the difference between cause and coincidence; and how to identify both the relevant stakeholders in any particular issue and their motivations. In short, this book is a guide to the techniques of critical thinking and evaluation applied to science.

Dr Seethaler reminds us how science really works, and how progress can involve disagreement between scientists. There are a number of examples discussed in this book: including BSE (Mad Cow Disease); global warming, genetic engineering of crops, and drug treatments for depression.

I enjoyed this book. The tools of critical thinking and evaluation discussed here are used in a number of different fields - including health, science and public policy more generally. These tools are not just restricted to these fields: we each have to make decisions based on science, and live with the consequences of such decisions made by others. It makes sense that we seek to understand the material presented so that we can make informed choices.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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Be very, very careful what you put into that head, because you will never, ever get it out. Thomas Cardinal Wolsey (1471-1530) &quote;
Markiert von 56 Kindle-Nutzern
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Oversimplified black-and-white perspectives of issues come from those who have a vested interest in convincing others of their point of view, or who are simply relaying information without thinking critically about it. &quote;
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&quote;
confirmation bias is ubiquitous. People pay attention to information that supports their viewpoints, while ignoring evidence to the contrary. &quote;
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