What we're about
The mission of the Skeptical Society of St. Louis is to promote the application of critical thinking and scientific principles to everyday problems and complex societal issues. We use the term "skeptic" in our name to associate the organization with the ideas of Scientific Skepticism promoted by Carl Sagan and to distinguish the organization from philosophical skepticism or cynicism. To quote Dr. Steven Novella, host of the popular podcast The Skeptics Guide to the Universe,
"A skeptic is one who prefers beliefs and conclusions that are reliable and valid to ones that are comforting or convenient, and therefore rigorously and openly applies the methods of science and reason to all empirical claims, especially their own. A skeptic provisionally proportions acceptance of any claim to valid logic and a fair and thorough assessment of available evidence, and studies the pitfalls of human reason and the mechanisms of deception so as to avoid being deceived by others or themselves. Skepticism values method over any particular conclusion."
Our primary activity is Skeptics in the Pub, an informal social event designed to promote fellowship and social networking among skeptics, critical-thinkers, and other like-minded individuals. We also provide special awards to 2 deserving students at the annual Academy of Science St. Louis Science Fair. These are monetary awards which are deposited directly into the student's 529 account for their future education.
A NOTE ON ATHEISM: While there is an overlap between the Skeptics and Atheists communities, we are not an atheist organization. Our focus is on the love of science and the desire to learn how to apply critical thinking within our lives. People of all persuasions are welcome!!
Join our group on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/groups/skepticalsocietystl) for more information.
We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and your donation is deductible to the limits allowed by law. Please donate to support our cause.
Upcoming events (1)
We are excited to host Dr. Dyer in partnership with our friends at Alpha Brewing for our next Skeptics in the Pub (SitP): Isn't It Just Common Sense? Confronting False Beliefs about Children and Families
Kathleen Dyer, PhD (Professor of Child and Family Science at the California State University, Fresno) identifies some of the most widely held false beliefs about children and families and describes the social science research methods employed to expose them as false.
- Are oldest siblings more responsible?
- Does praise help to raise children's self-esteem?
- Do opposites attract?
- Sugar makes kids hyper.....right?
Bring your questions about children and families -- let's put our common sense to the test. It is a celebration of science in the interest of improving the everyday lives of ordinary people. Dr. Dyer considers why these false beliefs are so readily endorsed and so hard to dispel, and provides evidence of strategies that can help challenge them.
An excerpt of Dr. Dyer being interviewed by Susan Gerbic at CSICon in 2016:
...I’ve been teaching students and parents how to interpret the research on things like corporal punishment, bed-sharing, and breastfeeding for two decades. I’ve also been combating nonsense such as the anti-vax movement and the Mozart effect, because those issues are salient to my discipline....
- John R.
- Dave B.
- Karl W.
- 7 attendees