Philosophical Reflexivity in Psychological Science: Do We Have It? Does It Matter?

  • Kathleen SlaneyEmail author
  • Donna Tafreshi
  • Charlie A. Wu
Part of the Palgrave Studies in the Theory and History of Psychology book series (PSTHP)


Reflexivity is a prominent theme in much science and technology studies (STS) scholarship. Yet, within most of conventional psychological science, there has been little awareness of either the concept of reflexivity or the various tools that researchers might employ in critically reflexive examinations of the research they are engaged in. However, reflexivity is a complex concept, and despite its esteemed status within qualitative research traditions, reflexivity has been somewhat of a contentious topic within the broader domain of STS. In this chapter, the multilayered concept of reflexivity is delineated and the various positions on the benefits and drawbacks of reflexivity in social research are discussed. We then examine reflexivity in relation to psychological science, and explore the question of whether philosophical reflexivity, as a specific type of reflexive (and reflective) practice, might play a generative role in psychological science.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen Slaney
    • 1
    Email author
  • Donna Tafreshi
    • 2
  • Charlie A. Wu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  2. 2.University of the Fraser ValleyAbbotsfordCanada

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