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Introspective evidence in psychology

In P. Achinstein (ed.), Scientific Evidence: Philosophical Theories & Applications. The Johns Hopkins University Press (2005)

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  1. Gestalt Psychology, Frontloading Phenomenology, and Psychophysics.Uljana Feest - forthcoming - Synthese:1-21.
    In his 1935 book Principles of Gestalt Psychology, Kurt Koffka stated that empirical research in perceptual psychology should begin with “a phenomenological analysis,” which in turn would put constraints on the “true theory.” In this paper, I take this statement as a point of departure to investigate in what sense Gestalt psychologists practiced a phenomenological analysis and how they saw it related to theory construction. I will contextualize the perceptual research in Gestalt psychology vis-a-vis Husserlian phenomenology on the one hand (...)
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  • ‘Blind’ to the Obvious.Janette Dinishak - 2014 - History of the Human Sciences 27 (4):59-76.
    The philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein cites the Gestalt psychologist Wolfgang Koehler almost as often as he cites William James in his posthumously published writings on the philosophy of psychology. Yet, few treatments of the Wittgenstein–Koehler relation in the philosophical literature could be called sustained discussions. Moreover, most of them treat Koehler as a mere whipping boy for Wittgenstein, one more opportunity to criticize the practice of psychologists. This article emphasizes how much the two thinkers agreed, and the extent to which some (...)
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  • First-Person Experiments: A Characterisation and Defence.Brentyn J. Ramm - 2018 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 9:449–467.
    While first-person methods are essential for a science of consciousness, it is controversial what form these methods should take and whether any such methods are reliable. I propose that first-person experiments are a reliable method for investigating conscious experience. I outline the history of these methods and describe their characteristics. In particular, a first-person experiment is an intervention on a subject's experience in which independent variables are manipulated, extraneous variables are held fixed, and in which the subject makes a phenomenal (...)
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  • Meditation, Enactivism and Introspective Training.Michael David Roberts - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Birmingham
    This PhD thesis concerns introspective approaches to the study of the mind. Across three standalone papers, I examine the significance of introspective data and advise on appropriate kinds of training for the production of such data. An overview document first introduces major themes, methods and arguments of the thesis. Paper 1 then begins the argumentative work, interrogating the constraining function of introspection in cognitive science. Here, I evaluate “enactivist” claims about the significance of introspection, clarifying central enactivist suggestions to draw (...)
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  • Scientific Methods Must Be Public, and Descriptive Experience Sampling Qualifies.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (1):102-117.
    I defend three main conclusions. First, whether a method is public is important, because non-public methods are scientifically illegitimate. Second, there are substantive prescriptive differences between the view that private methods are legitimate and the view that private methods are illegitimate. Third, Descriptive Experience Sam-pling is a public method.
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  • Introspecting in the 20th Century.Maja Spener - 2018 - In Amy Kind (ed.), Philosophy of Mind in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries. London: Rutledge. pp. 148-174.
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  • How to Improve on Heterophenomenology: The Self-Measurement Methodology of First-Person Data.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2010 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 17 (3-4):3 - 4.
    Heterophenomenology is a third-person methodology proposed by Daniel Dennett for using first-person reports as scientific evidence. I argue that heterophenomenology can be improved by making six changes: (i) setting aside consciousness, (ii) including other sources of first-person data besides first-person reports, (iii) abandoning agnosticism as to the truth value of the reports in favor of the most plausible assumptions we can make about what can be learned from the data, (iv) interpreting first-person reports (and other first-person behaviors) directly in terms (...)
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  • Scientific Methods Ought to Be Public, and Descriptive Experience Sampling is One of Them.Gualtiero Piccinini - forthcoming - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (1).
    Hurlburt and Schwitzgebel’s groundbreaking book, Describing Inner Experience: Proponent Meets Skeptic, examines a research method called Descriptive Experience Sampling (DES). DES, which was developed by Hurlburt and collaborators, works roughly as follows. An investigator gives a subject a random beeper. During the day, as the subject hears a beep, she writes a description of her conscious experience just before the beep. The next day, the investigator interviews the subject, asks for more details, corrects any apparent mistakes made by the subject, (...)
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  • Representation and Constraints: The Inverse Problem and the Structure of Visual Space.Gary Hatfield - 2003 - Acta Psychologica 114:355-378.
    Visual space can be distinguished from physical space. The first is found in visual experience, while the second is defined independently of perception. Theorists have wondered about the relation between the two. Some investigators have concluded that visual space is non-Euclidean, and that it does not have a single metric structure. Here it is argued that visual space exhibits contraction in all three dimensions with increasing distance from the observer, that experienced features of this contraction are not the same as (...)
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  • The Reality of Qualia.Gary Hatfield - 2007 - Erkenntnis 66 (1-2):133--168.
    This paper argues for the reality of qualia as aspects of phenomenal experience. The argument focuses on color vision and develops a dispositionalist, subjectivist account of what it is for an object to be colored. I consider objections to dispositionalism on epistemological, metaphysical, and 'ordinary' grounds. I distinguish my representative realism from sense-data theories and from recent 'representational' or 'intentional' theories, and I argue that there is no good reason to adopt a physicalist stance that denies the reality of qualia (...)
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  • First-Person Investigations of Consciousness.Brentyn Ramm - 2016 - Dissertation, The Australian National University
    This dissertation defends the reliability of first-person methods for studying consciousness, and applies first-person experiments to two philosophical problems: the experience of size and of the self. In chapter 1, I discuss the motivations for taking a first-person approach to consciousness, the background assumptions of the dissertation and some methodological preliminaries. In chapter 2, I address the claim that phenomenal judgements are far less reliable than perceptual judgements (Schwitzgebel, 2011). I argue that the main errors and limitations in making phenomenal (...)
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  • Phenomenal Experiences, First-Person Methods, and the Artificiality of Experimental Data.Uljana Feest - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (5):927-939.
    This paper argues that whereas philosophical discussions of first-person methods often turn on the veridicality of first-person reports, more attention should be paid to the experimental circumstances under which the reports are generated, and to the purposes of designing such experiments. After pointing to the ‘constructedness’ of first-person reports in the science of perception, I raise questions about the criteria by which to judge whether the reports illuminate something about the nature of perception. I illustrate this point with a historical (...)
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  • Phenomenological Constraints: A Problem for Radical Enactivism.Michael Roberts - 2018 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 17 (2):375-399.
    This paper does two things. Firstly, it clarifies the way that phenomenological data is meant to constrain cognitive science according to enactivist thinkers. Secondly, it points to inconsistencies in the ‘Radical Enactivist’ handling of this issue, so as to explicate the commitments that enactivists need to make in order to tackle the explanatory gap. I begin by sketching the basic features of enactivism in sections 1–2, focusing upon enactive accounts of perception. I suggest that enactivist ideas here rely heavily upon (...)
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  • Introspection as a Method and Introspection as a Feature of Consciousness.Uljana Feest - 2012 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 55 (1):1 - 16.
    Abstract If we take for granted that introspection is indispensable for the study of conscious mental states, the question arises what criteria have to be met in order for introspective reports to qualify as scientific evidence. There have been some attempts to argue (implicitly or explicitly) that it is possible to provide a satisfactory answer to this question while remaining agnostic with respect to questions about the nature of consciousness. Focusing on the aim of using introspection in order to generate (...)
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  • Has Psychology “Found its True Path”? Methods, Objectivity, and Cries of “Crisis” in Early Twentieth-Century French Psychology.John Carson - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (2):445-454.
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  • Has Psychology “Found its True Path”? Methods, Objectivity, and Cries of “Crisis” in Early Twentieth-Century French Psychology.John Carson - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 43 (2):445-454.
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  • The Mind's Construction: The Ontology of Mind and Mental Action.Matthew Soteriou (ed.) - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Matthew Soteriou provides an original philosophical account of sensory and cognitive aspects of consciousness. He explores distinctions of temporal character in our mental lives--especially in relation to the exercise of agency--and illuminates the more general issue of the place and role of mental action in the metaphysics of mind.
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  • Kant and the Scientific Study of Consciousness.Thomas Sturm & Falk Wunderlich - 2010 - History of the Human Sciences 23 (3):48-71.
    We argue that Kant’s views about consciousness, the mind-body problem, and the status of psychology as a science all differ drastically from the way in which these topics are conjoined in present debates about the prominent idea of a science of consciousness. Kant did never use the concept of consciousness in the now dominant sense of phenomenal qualia; his discussions of the mind-body problem center not on the reducibility of mental properties but of substances; and his views about the possibility (...)
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  • The Philosophical and Psychological Context of DES.Eric Schwitzgebel - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (1):288-294.
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  • Knowing Oneself? An Essay on Comtean Skepticism About Introspective Self-Observation'.Christian Beenfeldt - 2010 - Danish Yearbook of Philosophy 45:51-70.
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  • Using First-Person Data About Consciousness.Maja Spener - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (1):165-179.
    In Describing Inner Experience, Hurlburt and Schwitzgebel explore the proper limits of scepticism about consciousness and the prospect of a scientific investigation of consciousness. Their debate with each other focuses on the question about whether we can trust people's reports about their inner experiences and on Hurlburt's introspective method, DES. I point out that their discussion leaves unclear the crucial question of the aims and objectives of DES. This makes it difficult genuinely to assess DES's merits and the problems for (...)
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  • The Philospohical Background and Scientific Legacy of E. B. Titchener's Psychology: Understanding Introspectionism.Christian Beenfeldt - 2013 - Springer.
    ​This volume offers a new understanding of Titchener’s influential system of psychology popularly known as introspectionism, structuralism and as classical introspective psychology. Adopting a new perspective on introspectionism and seeking to assess the reasons behind its famous implosion, this book reopens and rewrites the chapter in the history of early scientific psychology pertaining to the nature of E. B. Titchener’s psychological system. -/- Arguing against the view that Titchener’s system was undone by an overreliance on introspection, the author explains how (...)
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