General scientific method
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General “Scientific Method” PowerPoint PPT Presentation

General “Scientific Method”. What makes good science?. What is Science? or. True. False. Science is concerned with understanding how nature and the physical world work. Science can prove anything, solve any problem, or answer any question.

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General “Scientific Method”

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General scientific method

General “Scientific Method”

What makes good science?


Notes 5590

What is Science?

or

True

False

  • Science is concerned with understanding how nature and the physical world work.

  • Science can prove anything, solve any problem, or answer any question.

  • Any study done carefully and based on observation is scientific.

  • Science can be done poorly.

  • Anything done scientifically can be relied upon to be accurate and reliable.

  • Different scientists may get different solutions to the same problem.

  • Knowledge of what science is, what it can and cannot do, and how it works, is important for all people.


Notes 5590

Science is concerned with understanding how nature and the physical world work.

True

Science is a process by which we try to understand how the natural and physical world works and how it came to be that way.


Notes 5590

Science can prove anything, solve any problem or answer any question.

False

  • Science actually attempts to disprove ideas (hypotheses).

  • Science is limited strictly to solving problems about the physical and natural world.

  • Explanations based on supernatural forces, values or ethics can never be disproved and thus do not fall under the realm of science.


Notes 5590

Any study done carefully and based on observation is scientific.

False

  • Science must follow certain rules.

  • The rules of science make the scientific process as objective as is possible.

Objective= Not influenced by feelings, interests and prejudices; UNBIASED

vs.

Subjective = Influenced by feelings, interests and prejudices; BIASED


Notes 5590

Science can be done poorly.

True

Anything done scientifically can be relied upon to be accurate and reliable.

False

  • Science can be done poorly, just like any other human endeavor.

  • Quality control mechanisms in science increase the reliability of its product.


Notes 5590

Different scientists may get different solutions to the same problem.

No

Yes

True

  • Results can be influenced by the race, gender, nationality, religion, politics or economic interests of the scientist.

  • Sampling or measurement bias can result in different solutions to the same problem.


Notes 5590

Knowledge of what science is, what it can and cannot do, and how it works, is important for all people.

True

  • People need to be able to evaluate scientific information in order to make informed decisions about:

    • Health care

    • Environmental issues

    • Technological advances

    • Public health issues


Notes 5590

What is good science?

Objectivity is the key to good science.

To be objective, experiments need to be designed and conducted in a way that does not introduce bias into the study.


Notes 5590

  • OBSERVATION—act of gathering information firsthand using your five senses

    Be careful not to confuse an observation with an inference

  • INFERENCE—a conclusion that results from past observations or knowledge.

    • You need observations in order to make inferences.


Notes 5590

OBSERVATION

  • ___________________

  • ___________________

  • ___________________

  • The owl has wings

  • Both of the owls eyes face forward

  • It is night

INFERENCE

  • Owls live in trees

  • Owls feed on mice

  • Owls kill prey with their talons

  • ___________________

  • ___________________

  • ___________________


Notes 5590

  • You’ll use inferences when you draw conclusions about what has happened.

    HYPOTHESIS—proposed, testable explanation for the way “something” functions. The “educated guess”


Notes 5590

Data

When scientists look at DATA they…

  • Determine if it is reliable

  • Look to see if it supports or does not support the hypothesis

  • Determine possible sources of error

  • Usually shown in graph or table form

  • Scientists analyze tables, graphs and charts to draw conclusions about whether the hypothesis is supported or not supported.


  • Notes 5590

    • THEORY—highly tested, generally accepted principal that explains a vast number of observations and experimental data

      • Common use of the word theory is very different from the actual scientific definition. Example—“it’s just a theory who murdered the girl”


    Notes 5590

    BIAS

    Bias=

    • A prejudiced presentation of material

    • A consistent error in estimating a value


    Notes 5590

    Good science depends on a well-designed experiment that minimizes bias by using the appropriate:

    • Sample size

    • Sample selection

    • Measurement techniques

    • ***for the question being investigated


    Notes 5590

    Data Sources

    • University Research

    • Corporate Research

    • Government Research

    • Research by Special Interest Groups

    All organizations produce unbiased data. However, it is important to understand the organization’s motivation to be able to identify potential bias. In some situations, the need to promote special interests or make profits may lead to bias.


    Notes 5590

    Examining the Data Source

    Investigations of Passive Smoking Harm:

    Relationship between Article Conclusions & Author Affiliations

    Barnes, Deborah E. 1998. Why review articles on the health effects of passive smoking reach different conclusions. JAMA. 279(19): 1566-1570.


    Communicating ideas

    Communicating Ideas

    • Publishing papers in scientific journals

      • Peer review—anonymous experts determine if the experiment can be duplicated, if good “controls” were used and an accurate conclusion was reached

    • Independent duplication

    • Presenting them at scientific meetings


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