Hard and Soft Science
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Hard science and Soft science are colloquial terms often used when comparing fields of academic research or scholarship, with hard meaning perceived as being more scientific, rigorous, or accurate. Fields of the natural or physical sciences are often described as hard, while the social sciences and similar fields are often described as soft. The use of the term "soft science" is often pejorative, implying that a particular field of study being described as "soft" is not scientific. The hard sciences are characterized as relying on experimental, empirical, quantifiable data, relying on the scientific method, and focusing on accuracy and objectivity. Different approaches to the scientific method can be distinguished by the research they term "soft science" and what they consider "hard." The issue is important to the philosophy of science, which does not always support the possibility of drawing a distinction between "hard" and "soft", and to science studies and the sociology of science, which study scientists' implicit perceptions of research and methods.
Herausgeber Frederic P. Miller
Herausgeber Agnes F. Vandome
Herausgeber John McBrewster