Advancing Family Theories explores two contemporary theories of the family - rational choice theory and transition theory. These diametrically different approaches illuminate what differing theories reveal about families. The book also discusses how meta-theories can assist in building and refining theory and offers insight on the "understanding versus explanation" debate. Advancing Family Theories gives students a precise notion of what a theory is and how theories work in research. The book not only looks at philosophical realms but also examines particular substantive theory to explain and predict family behaviors.Advancing Family Theories Family Theories, Second Edition (SAGE, 2002), or is effective on its own. The book helps students with the task of taking abstract and very general theories and reducing them to a level of specific research models and hypotheses.

Science and its Critics

Science and its critics

Afew years ago I served as an examiner for a doctoral dissertation. The student had done an excellent job of collecting qualitative data to support a conceptual model. Indeed, the dissertation was both theoretically and methodologically sophisticated. One examiner asked what seemed a relatively unproblematic question: “What is the major knowledge claim your thesis makes?” The student, however, assumed this was more of a philosophical question and launched into a discussion regarding the relativity and plurality of knowledge claims. After hearing the student argue that knowledge was relative and there was no way of deciding which claim might be more adequate, the examiner paused and reflected. The next question was “Are you telling me that there is no ...

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