Measurement , Theory Of

  • Published 2003

Abstract

A conceptual analysis of measurement can properly begin by formulating the two fizdamental problems of any measurement procedure The first problem is that of representation, justifying the assigrunent of numbers to objects or phenomena. We cannot literally take a number in our har+ and ‘apply’ it to a physical object. What we can show is that the structure of a set of phenomena under certain empirical operations and relations is the same as the structure #f some set of numbers under corresponding arithmetical operations and relations. Solution of the representation problem for a theory of measurement does noi completely l ~ y bare the structure of the theory, for there is often a formal dfjèrence between the kind of assignment of numbers arising from diffent procedures of measurement. This is the second fundamental problem, determining the scale type of a given procedure. Counting ìs an example of an absolute scale. The number of members of a given collection of objects is determined uniquely. In contrast, the measurement of mass or weight is an example of a ratio scale. An empirical procedure for measuring mass does not determine the unit of mass. The measurement of temperature is an example of an interval scale. The empirìcalprocedure of measuring temperature by use of a thermometer determines neither a unit nor an origin. In this sort of memurement the ratio of any two intervals 3 independent of the unit and zero point of measurement. Still another type of scale ìs one which ìs arbitrary except for order. Moh’s hardness scale, according to

Cite this paper

@inproceedings{2003MeasurementT, title={Measurement , Theory Of}, author={}, year={2003} }