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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Aristotelean-Thomistic Approach of Comparative Psychology


The field of psychology has witnessed an increase in its reliance on empiricism to the point that many researchers operate with a complete disregard for the role of philosophy in their pursuit of knowledge. The resultant segmentation of the field and decline in such important areas as comparative psychology can be attributed to this trend, indicating the need for the role of both philosophical and scientific knowledge to be rightly applied and understood. A return to a proper utilization of philosophy in guiding empirical questions and interpreting results is offered as a means of revitalizing the field of comparative psychology. The philosophical approach of Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas is discussed as a means to do so, as it provides a valuable perspective in guiding research and enabling the scientist to interpret results in an integrated and informative manner, whereby the phenotypic comparisons of humans and non-humans can be understood coherently.


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