Levy, Judith A.
November 1984
Humanity & Society;Nov84, Vol. 8 Issue 4, p478
Academic Journal
The article discusses gender bias as a threat to constructive validity in research design. It examines how gender bias common to the domain assumptions, language structures and interpretive processes of research confound a study's constructive validity. It focuses on constructive validity because it plays a critical role in determining what "facts" get accepted as reality. The purpose of selecting the topic is to show how science's traditional theoretical and methodological treatment of women compromises on study results. The paper argues that producing validity through elimination of androcentric bias should be of concern to anyone who values the integrity of his or her research. It questions the compatibility of science and feminism. The answer lies in bringing a feminist consciousness to mainstream research to produce a new mode of science. Scientific progress depends less on the accumulation of new facts or discoveries than on developing constructs with better explanatory and predictive power. It is here, within the theoretical and abstract notions of how the world is organized, that feminism, through its sensitivities and collective experience, can contribute greatly to new insights and better understandings.


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