Measurement in Psychology: A Critical History of a Methodological Concept
This book traces how such a seemingly immutable idea as measurement proved so malleable when it collided with the subject matter of psychology. It locates philosophical and social influences (such as scientism, practicalism and Pythagoreanism) reshaping the concept and, at the core of this reshaping, identifies a fundamental problem: the issue of whether psychological attributes really are quantitative. It argues that the idea of measurement now endorsed within psychology actually subverts attempts to establish a genuinely quantitative science and it urges a new direction. It relates views on measurement by thinkers such as Holder, Russell, Campbell and Nagel to earlier views, like those of Euclid and Oresme. Within the history of psychology, it considers contributions by Fechner, Cattell, Thorndike, Stevens and Suppes, among others. It also contains a non-technical exposition of conjoint measurement theory and recent foundational work by leading measurement theorist R. Duncan Luce.
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CHAPTER 1 Numerical data and the meaning of measurement
CHAPTER 2 Quantitative psychologys intellectual inheritance
CHAPTER 3 Quantity number and measurement in science
CHAPTER 4 Early psychology and the quantity objection
CHAPTER 5 Making the representational theory of measurement
CHAPTER 6 The status of psychophysical measurement
additive relation additive structure aggregate applied attempt attri attributes are quantitative axioms Campbell Campbell’s causal classical concept concatenation concept of measurement continuous quantity defined definition of measurement derived measurement empirical relations entail equal Euclid’s example existence experimental fact Fechner Hölder’s hypothesis identified intensive quantities involved item response theory kind least upper bound length logic logically independent Luce mathematical measurement theory ment method Nagel natural numbers non-quantitative numerical assignments numerical representation objects or events observed scores operation operationism ordered group ordinal philosophical physical positive real numbers procedures properties psychol psychological attributes psychological measurement Pythagoreanism quantitative attributes quantitative psychology quantitative science quantity objection QUENTIN SKINNER ratio scale ratios of magnitudes recognised relation of additivity relative relevant representational theory representationalism Russell Russell’s scientific task scientists sensation intensities sense sense-distances Spearman specific Stevens stimulus Suppes theoretical theory of measurement thesis things thought understanding of measurement unit