A Critical Investigation of Positivism: Its Adequacy as an Approach for Accounting Research

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Description

This dissertation addresses the influence of "positivism" in accounting research. Accounting research has been overwhelmed by "positivism" to the extent that the "scientific method" has become sacrosanct. The dysfunctional consequences include the extreme emphasis placed on methodology. Researchers believe that the methods applied, rather than the orientations of the human researcher, generate knowledge. This belief stems from an extreme objectivist ontological orientation. A second consequence of the "positivistic" influence is a change in direction of intellectual inquiries. Obsession with measurement and quantification has all but eliminated concern for values. Specifically this dissertation asserts that the "scientific method" has been misapplied ... continued below

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vii, 256 leaves: ill.

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Eriksen, Scott D. (Scott Douglas) August 1987.

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This dissertation is part of the collection entitled: UNT Theses and Dissertations and was provided by UNT Libraries to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 39 times , with 10 in the last month . More information about this dissertation can be viewed below.

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  • Eriksen, Scott D. (Scott Douglas)

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Description

This dissertation addresses the influence of "positivism" in accounting research. Accounting research has been overwhelmed by "positivism" to the extent that the "scientific method" has become sacrosanct. The dysfunctional consequences include the extreme emphasis placed on methodology. Researchers believe that the methods applied, rather than the orientations of the human researcher, generate knowledge. This belief stems from an extreme objectivist ontological orientation. A second consequence of the "positivistic" influence is a change in direction of intellectual inquiries. Obsession with measurement and quantification has all but eliminated concern for values.
Specifically this dissertation asserts that the "scientific method" has been misapplied and misunderstood. The misapplication is that a method developed in the natural sciences has been blindly accepted and endorsed in the social sciences. It has been misunderstood in the sense that the abstract Cartesian-Newtonian view of reality has been mistaken for reality itself. The ontological assumptions inherent in this view have become integrated in the Western mind. The axiomatic nature of these assumptions have been ignored. The primary purpose of this dissertation is to project a point concerning research and knowledge. Hence, there are no "research findings" in the conventional sense.

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vii, 256 leaves: ill.

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UNT Theses and Dissertations

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  • August 1987

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Aug. 22, 2014, 6 p.m.

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  • March 7, 2016, 9:31 a.m.

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Eriksen, Scott D. (Scott Douglas). A Critical Investigation of Positivism: Its Adequacy as an Approach for Accounting Research, dissertation, August 1987; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc330743/: accessed October 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .