Alistair Crombie distinguishes six different styles of scientific thinking:
- Mathematical postulation and proof
- Hypothetical modelling
- Historical-genetic (evolutionary)
- [plus one might add] Case studies
I seem to incline to the historical-genetic, with a dash of taxonomic, and a seasoning of statistical.
Crombie, Alistair C. (1988) “Designed in the Mind: Western Visions of Science, Nature and Humankind” History of Science 26, 1-12.