Science – different types and evolution

In the discussion of evolution, it is important to understand the meaning of the word “science”.  Without this understanding, confusion over what is and is not a “science facts” erupts, emotions flair, and intellectual discussion between creation and evolution disengages.

The fact is that there are difference types of sciences.  Answers.com gives us a list of ten different types of science.

WiseGeek.com breaks science down into 3 broad categories – formal (computer, math, statistics), natural (biology, chemistry, physics) and social sciences (anthropology, psychology, sociology). 

Free Dictionary gives us five (5) definitions for the word “science“.

Other experts distinguish between Hard science and Soft science.  This is the one I like best because it is so easy to remember:

Hard Science: The observation, study, inquiry, measuring, description, experimental investigation, and theoretical explanation of natural phenomena that is gained through experiments. 

Soft Science: Methodological activity, discipline, study, or knowledge that is especially that is gained through experience.  Example: I’ve got packing a suitcase down to a science

Did you notice a difference between the above two definitions?  If so, you will see the difference between Hard and Soft science which is part of the evolution and creation confusion.

Hard science is based on experiments and investigation that are:

  1. Observation – ability to observe what is going on in the experiment.
  2. Measurable – ability to measure what is going on in the experiment.
  3. Reproducible – being able to reproduce the experiment around the globe and get the same results.

Soft science is based on experience and judgment  that include:

  1. Discipline – a specialized area of study.
  2. Study – to detailed observation of a specialized area.
  3. Activity – being able to see the activity over and over.

Do you see that “evolution” is a soft science (a study) by way the fact that it cannot be measured in a laboratory and different people seeing the same evidence can come to different conclusions?

 Hard science attempts to eliminate variable and judgment so that the conclusions are as clear as physically possible.   (evolution cannot be reproduced or observed)?

Can you see how each “science” could have their own definition for “scientific fact”  or “scientific evidence“?  Hard science facts have to be proven true; soft science claims have to be demonstrated true. 

Another way to look at this is that in hard science there can be NO reasonable doubt as there can be in soft science.  This difference can be demonstrated by measurable, reproducible, and observable experiments.