2021: STS 112 Changing Perceptions of Nature


Take – Home Examination:

Answer 4 Questions Only: 9 options.

All answers submitted must be your own work. The use of commercial essay writing services is monitored by the University and will lead to serious penalties.

Students should reference at least one source from the STS 112 tutorial readings in each of their answers.

* Each answer should be 500 words long excluding references and headings. Total 2,000 words.

* Answers should be written in continuous prose and referenced where appropriate. Plagiarism can lead to harsh penalties.

* All sources must be properly referenced (Harvard Author/Date system) see subject Moodle site for full details.

* Students cannot do a Take Home Exam question that corresponds with their tutorial presentation or major essay topic.

* All answers should be supported by examples and argument, use relevant sources, and accurately present content and texts covered during the session.


* Please submit as per normal essay format, typed, printed and with cover sheet, to the STS 112 Moodle site

* Clearly mark your name, tutorial time and the on the cover page of your take home exam and clearly number which question you are attempting.

* The Take Home Exam must be page numbered.

 *Laid out in 1.5 line spacing (minimum) or in double spacing.

 * Use one style of font consistently throughout the assignment.

* 12 to 14 point fonts for headings, 11 to 12 point fonts for text, 10 point fonts for


Question One:

Can Aristotelian Natural Philosophy be interpreted as the first great scientific tradition or was it something completely different?

Question Two:

What were some of the limitations of Galileo’s telescopic observations in establishing that Copernicus’s theories were true?

Question Three:

 Describe the main differences between Mechanical Philosophy and Aristotelian Natural Philosophy.

Question Four:

Describe the religious dimensions of Newton’s Natural Philosophy.

Question Five:

Newton was sympathetic to the Mechanical Philosophy but his work deviated from strict Mechanical Philosophy in a number of ways. What were some of these differences?  Provide examples.

Question Six:

Outline the strengths and weaknesses of ‘internalist’ and ‘externalist’ historical explanations for the Scientific Revolution.  

Question Seven:

How well does Kuhn’s model of scientific revolutions apply to the emergence of Newtonian or Darwinian views of Nature?

Question Eight:

How did ideas of progress, popular during the Enlightenment, influence the development of theories of evolution of life on earth?

Question Nine:

How did the work of Paley and Malthus influence the development of Darwin’s theory of ‘evolution by natural selection’.

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