Skip to Main Content
Table 1. 
Instruments Used in Current Study
Relevant PropositionMeasurement Instruments
The Longino Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about scientific objectivity and how it relates to societal values. 
Diversity of social values tends to enhance scientific objectivity. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 1. It is possible for scientists to be guided by their societal values and still be objective when they: 
  a. choose their general research topics 
  b. select or frame their specific research questions 
  c. design their study 
  d. gather their data 
  e. analyze their data 
  f. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 2. Individual scientists are able to prevent their societal values from influencing their research decisions. 
 3. In some cases, scientific objectivity is ENHANCED when scientists’ are guided by their societal values. 
 4. Objectivity requires input from a diverse variety of SCIENTIFIC perspectives. 
 5. Objectivity requires input from a diverse variety of SOCIETAL perspectives. 
 6. Input from diverse perspectives can make a scientific field objective, even if the decisions of individual scientists are influenced by their societal values. 
The Harding Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about the relationship between scientific objectivity and efforts to promote social justice (e.g., gender, racial equality). 
Scientific objectivity is strengthened by promoting social justice and framing research in light of the experiences of socially marginalized groups. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 7. Scientific objectivity IS COMPROMISED when scientists’ efforts to promote social justice guide how they: 
  a. choose their general research topics 
  b. select or frame their specific research questions 
  c. design their study 
  d. gather their data 
  e. analyze their data 
  f. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 8. Science is more likely to be objective if scientists aim to promote egalitarian values and oppose sexism, racism, and other forms of discrimination. 
 9. Science should aim to advance knowledge, while being neutral about political ideals. 
 10. Scientists should prioritize framing research questions in ways that reflect the experiences of economically and politically marginalized groups. 
 11. Science will ultimately discover the same basic facts and laws of nature no matter the cultural or social backgrounds of scientists. 
 12. Science that attempts to promote social equality will likely be of lower quality than more politically neutral research. 
The Douglas Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about the extent to which scientists should consider value judgments related to social, health, economic, or ecological harms that might occur if their claims turn out to be mistaken (e.g., mistakenly concluding that a new pharmaceutical does not have harmful side effects). 
Scientists should consider the ethical and social costs of errors when deciding the sufficiency of evidence. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 13. Scientists should consider societal values in their decisions about what is sufficient evidence (such as sample size, p-values) when they: 
  a. select or frame their specific research questions 
  b. design their study 
  c. gather their data 
  d. analyze their data 
  e. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 14. If asserting a result when it is false would have very harmful consequences, then the claim should not be asserted unless the evidence for it is exceptionally strong. 
 15. Scientists have a moral responsibility to consider harms that might follow if their findings are wrong. 
 16. Scientists who consider the social costs of error when deciding whether or not to assert their results would NOT be objective. 
 17. Considering the social costs of error is the job of those who apply science to solve practical problems and NOT the job of scientists. 
 18. If scientists considered the social costs of error when deciding whether to assert their results, then the public would view science as politically biased. 
The Kourany Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about whether science has a responsibility to advance public welfare, understood broadly to include such things as public health, environmental sustainability, as well as social justice and equality. 
Promoting social justice should be a core aim of science. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 19. When individual scientists have expertise related to certain public issues, they have a responsibility to do the following: 
  a. publicly communicate the state of the science on the issue 
  b. counter the public statements of influential people and organizations that misinterpret, ignore, or deny the state of the science on the issue 
  c. support public decisions in line with the state of the science 
  d. oppose public decisions at odds with the state of the science 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 20. Science should NOT aim to promote equality or justice, because these concepts raise moral and political issues about which reasonable people disagree. 
 21. The aim of science should be to advance knowledge, and attempting to promote social justice would be likely to conflict with this aim. 
 22. Examples of sexist and racist science suggest that supposedly value-neutral science can in fact be harmful to economically and politically vulnerable groups. 
 23. Scientists should NOT act as advocates in any circumstance, because doing so would lead to bias and compromise objectivity. 
 24. The institution of science has a responsibility to advance human welfare, which includes promoting social justice. 
Relevant PropositionMeasurement Instruments
The Longino Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about scientific objectivity and how it relates to societal values. 
Diversity of social values tends to enhance scientific objectivity. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 1. It is possible for scientists to be guided by their societal values and still be objective when they: 
  a. choose their general research topics 
  b. select or frame their specific research questions 
  c. design their study 
  d. gather their data 
  e. analyze their data 
  f. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 2. Individual scientists are able to prevent their societal values from influencing their research decisions. 
 3. In some cases, scientific objectivity is ENHANCED when scientists’ are guided by their societal values. 
 4. Objectivity requires input from a diverse variety of SCIENTIFIC perspectives. 
 5. Objectivity requires input from a diverse variety of SOCIETAL perspectives. 
 6. Input from diverse perspectives can make a scientific field objective, even if the decisions of individual scientists are influenced by their societal values. 
The Harding Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about the relationship between scientific objectivity and efforts to promote social justice (e.g., gender, racial equality). 
Scientific objectivity is strengthened by promoting social justice and framing research in light of the experiences of socially marginalized groups. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 7. Scientific objectivity IS COMPROMISED when scientists’ efforts to promote social justice guide how they: 
  a. choose their general research topics 
  b. select or frame their specific research questions 
  c. design their study 
  d. gather their data 
  e. analyze their data 
  f. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 8. Science is more likely to be objective if scientists aim to promote egalitarian values and oppose sexism, racism, and other forms of discrimination. 
 9. Science should aim to advance knowledge, while being neutral about political ideals. 
 10. Scientists should prioritize framing research questions in ways that reflect the experiences of economically and politically marginalized groups. 
 11. Science will ultimately discover the same basic facts and laws of nature no matter the cultural or social backgrounds of scientists. 
 12. Science that attempts to promote social equality will likely be of lower quality than more politically neutral research. 
The Douglas Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about the extent to which scientists should consider value judgments related to social, health, economic, or ecological harms that might occur if their claims turn out to be mistaken (e.g., mistakenly concluding that a new pharmaceutical does not have harmful side effects). 
Scientists should consider the ethical and social costs of errors when deciding the sufficiency of evidence. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 13. Scientists should consider societal values in their decisions about what is sufficient evidence (such as sample size, p-values) when they: 
  a. select or frame their specific research questions 
  b. design their study 
  c. gather their data 
  d. analyze their data 
  e. report their results 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 14. If asserting a result when it is false would have very harmful consequences, then the claim should not be asserted unless the evidence for it is exceptionally strong. 
 15. Scientists have a moral responsibility to consider harms that might follow if their findings are wrong. 
 16. Scientists who consider the social costs of error when deciding whether or not to assert their results would NOT be objective. 
 17. Considering the social costs of error is the job of those who apply science to solve practical problems and NOT the job of scientists. 
 18. If scientists considered the social costs of error when deciding whether to assert their results, then the public would view science as politically biased. 
The Kourany Proposition The following questions ask you to consider your thoughts about whether science has a responsibility to advance public welfare, understood broadly to include such things as public health, environmental sustainability, as well as social justice and equality. 
Promoting social justice should be a core aim of science. Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 19. When individual scientists have expertise related to certain public issues, they have a responsibility to do the following: 
  a. publicly communicate the state of the science on the issue 
  b. counter the public statements of influential people and organizations that misinterpret, ignore, or deny the state of the science on the issue 
  c. support public decisions in line with the state of the science 
  d. oppose public decisions at odds with the state of the science 
Please indicate whether you disagree or agree with each of the following statements. [7 response categories: strongly disagree, moderately disagree, slightly disagree, neither disagree nor agree, slightly agree, moderately agree, strongly agree] 
 20. Science should NOT aim to promote equality or justice, because these concepts raise moral and political issues about which reasonable people disagree. 
 21. The aim of science should be to advance knowledge, and attempting to promote social justice would be likely to conflict with this aim. 
 22. Examples of sexist and racist science suggest that supposedly value-neutral science can in fact be harmful to economically and politically vulnerable groups. 
 23. Scientists should NOT act as advocates in any circumstance, because doing so would lead to bias and compromise objectivity. 
 24. The institution of science has a responsibility to advance human welfare, which includes promoting social justice. 
Close Modal

or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal