Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Objectivity is the idea that there is “out there” a reality apart from the human mind capable of perceiving it. Objectivity thus assumes a real truth, and it also assumes that seekers of that truth must adopt a posture of detachment, not letting their own values intrude in the quest. Being objective is seen as the only way to discover how things really are and how things really work. Researchers keep their own values and expectations out of the quest both by determining to do so and by adhering to methods of investigation that prevent human contamination of the findings. Objectivity plays out in research in the belief that stating the theory to be tested and gathering evidence to test it must be separate and independent processes. In this view, a subjective theory will be tested against facts that have been gathered and analyzed according to methods that are In ...