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Falsifiability of theories in the biological sciences


MCM Iqbal

Institute of Fundamental Studies, Hantana Road, Kandy, Sri Lanka, LK
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Biology is generally accepted as a mainstream scientific discipline. However, philosophers of science have questioned the scientific method applied in biological sciences, specifically in evolutionary biology, ever since Karl Popper formulated his principle of falsification. Thus the only major theory in biology, Darwin's theory of evolution, was referred to by Popper as a metaphysical programme. He contended that the theory of evolution is a tautology and laws (if any) in the biological sciences should be unrestricted and universal. As biologists since then have pointed out, biology is a unique science, which requires unique methods to explain its phenomena. The principle of falsification and its application to biological sciences, the uniqueness of biology as a science necessitating different and equally valid scientific methods are discussed.

doi: 10.4038/cjsbs.v36i2.487

Cey. J. Sci. (Bio. Sci.) 36 (2): 126-133, 2008

How to Cite: Iqbal, M., 2009. Falsifiability of theories in the biological sciences. Ceylon Journal of Science (Biological Sciences), 36(2), pp.126–133. DOI:
Published on 09 Jun 2009.


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