Debunking Denialism

Fighting pseudoscience and quackery with reason and evidence.

Scientific skepticism is more than just science

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Knowledge Base: Skepticism

Scientific skepticism is an approach that is based on evaluating questionable claims using scientific evidence, logic, reason and critical thinking. Many people and groups do not like to have their ideological beliefs questioned. A common reaction they have to skeptical investigation is to make up myths about skepticism. This section aims to refuse those claims.

Fact: Scientific skepticism is more than just science


Scientific skepticism defends science, but also care about many other issues, such as consumer protection.


Scientific skepticism shares many similarities with science. Both investigate the world, look for empirical truth, value critical thinking and so on, but scientists do not necessarily focus on things like consumer protection, the borderlands between science and pseudoscience and so on.

Scientific skepticism values knowledge and truth, methodological naturalism, science, critical thinking, demarcation, thinking freely, understanding biases and fallacies as well as protecting consumers from fake products and treatments for real medical conditions (Novella, 2013).

Some people who reject scientific skepticism as an idea wrongly think that it is nothing more than a withered down version of science. This is wrong, because there are aspects of scientific skepticism that scientists do not necessarily have to focus on while doing science, such as consumer protection or fighting pseudoscience. Scientists can do all of these things (just like any other human), but it is not generally a requirement of their professions and it is possible to work in any scientific field without engaging in consumer protection or the fight against pseudoscience. Thus, there is value in scientific skepticism above and beyond science.

– Novella, S. (2013). Bigfoot Skeptics, New Atheists, Politics and Religion. NeuroLogica Blog. Accessed: 2017-02-26.
– Shermer, M. (1997). A skeptical manifesto. Skeptic Magazine. Accessed: 2017-02-26.

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