There are two methods – common-sense explanations and social science theories – by which human behavior can be explained. Which method do you think is better in accounting for human behavior and why?

Essay by tinytinCollege, UndergraduateB, June 2008

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In order to survive and interact with the other members of the society, it is crucial for us to understand what the other people are thinking about and what the underlying factors that contribute to their behavior are. In our daily life, people are continuously interpreting and explaining others behavior, sometimes even without aware of it themselves. How does this knowledge of interpreting the others come about? And is it a reliable method?Most people are using common sense explanation to interpret human behavior, while social scientists will explain our world by social science theories. What are they? And which one can give a more reliable and accurate account for human behavior?Common Sense Explanations are formed basing on individual's past experiences or were passed down from the last generations. It is the most basic and simple form of knowledge that helps us to survive. For instance, people understand that it will be hurt when a ball is throwing at them and in result, they will run away from it.

We use the common sense to perceive the world we are living in. It is unimaginable if a person does not possess any common sense at all.

Social Science Theories, like the theories in natural science, are derived from scientific methods. They are either induced or deduced from different task or experiment. But since the subject matter in social sciences is completely different from that of natural science, observation, survey and interview which sometimes involves a control group, are the methodology used to test the experimental hypotheses, instead of using laboratory experiments. Hence, social science theories are backed up by empirical studies and data, and therefore should be more widely applicable, objective and reliability to explain human behavior.

Unlike social science theories, "common sense" is held by everyone. Therefore, people can...