Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Theory

In science (including human evolutionary biology), any set of broad hypotheses that have been subjected to repeated tests and that currently have not been falsified and rejected; hypotheses informed by statistical trends. A good theory stimulates further thinking and testing of propositions, and outweighs rival theories if it possesses robust explanatory power, veracity, and parsimony, e.g. evolutionary theory. The term theory sometimes has alternative meanings, however, in the literature of the social sciences and humanities.

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