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“FiLCHeRS” Handout – Chemistry Honors

• Falsifiability. It must be possible to prove a thing false before it can be accepted as true. An example of a true
claim being falsifiable is given by Lett: the true claim that the life span of human beings is less than 200 years
is falsifiable; it would be falsified if a single human being were to live to be 200 years old.
• Logic. A valid argument will naturally follow from its premises. An example of an invalid argument is given
by Lett: All dogs have fleas; Xavier has fleas; therefore Xavier is a dog. This is an invalid argument as soon as
a feline named Xavier who has fleas is found.
• Comprehensiveness. All possible evidence to support any claim must be considered. In other words, all
evidence must be evaluated and not only that evidence which supports the theory being posited.
• Honesty. All evidence must be evaluated without self-deception. It is important to examine all evidence
honestly and at the risk of having our views changed by it.
• Replicability. This states simply that any experiment be replicable.
• Sufficiency. All evidence available must be sufficient to support the truth of a claim. There are stipulations to
this, which include the burden of proof resting with the claimant and extraordinary claims requiring
extraordinary evidence, and evidence based upon authority and/or testimony is always inadequate for any
paranormal claim.

“FiLCHeRS” Handout – Chemistry Honors


• Falsifiability. It must be possible to prove a thing false before it can be accepted as true. An example of a true
claim being falsifiable is given by Lett: the true claim that the life span of human beings is less than 200 years
is falsifiable; it would be falsified if a single human being were to live to be 200 years old.
• Logic. A valid argument will naturally follow from its premises. An example of an invalid argument is given
by Lett: All dogs have fleas; Xavier has fleas; therefore Xavier is a dog. This is an invalid argument as soon as
a feline named Xavier who has fleas is found.
• Comprehensiveness. All possible evidence to support any claim must be considered. In other words, all
evidence must be evaluated and not only that evidence which supports the theory being posited.
• Honesty. All evidence must be evaluated without self-deception. It is important to examine all evidence
honestly and at the risk of having our views changed by it.
• Replicability. This states simply that any experiment be replicable.
• Sufficiency. All evidence available must be sufficient to support the truth of a claim. There are stipulations to
this, which include the burden of proof resting with the claimant and extraordinary claims requiring
extraordinary evidence, and evidence based upon authority and/or testimony is always inadequate for any
paranormal claim.

“FiLCHeRS” Handout – Chemistry Honors


• Falsifiability. It must be possible to prove a thing false before it can be accepted as true. An example of a true
claim being falsifiable is given by Lett: the true claim that the life span of human beings is less than 200 years
is falsifiable; it would be falsified if a single human being were to live to be 200 years old.
• Logic. A valid argument will naturally follow from its premises. An example of an invalid argument is given
by Lett: All dogs have fleas; Xavier has fleas; therefore Xavier is a dog. This is an invalid argument as soon as
a feline named Xavier who has fleas is found.
• Comprehensiveness. All possible evidence to support any claim must be considered. In other words, all
evidence must be evaluated and not only that evidence which supports the theory being posited.
• Honesty. All evidence must be evaluated without self-deception. It is important to examine all evidence
honestly and at the risk of having our views changed by it.
• Replicability. This states simply that any experiment be replicable.
• Sufficiency. All evidence available must be sufficient to support the truth of a claim. There are stipulations to
this, which include the burden of proof resting with the claimant and extraordinary claims requiring
extraordinary evidence, and evidence based upon authority and/or testimony is always inadequate for any
paranormal claim.