# The Scientific Method - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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The Scientific Method. Explain the steps in the scientific method. Step 1. Ask a Question based on your observations: How, what, why, where, when or who? In order to use the scientific method to answer the question, it must be about something that you can measure, preferably with a number.

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The Scientific Method

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## The Scientific Method

Explain the steps in the scientific method.

### Step 1

• Ask a Question based on your observations: How, what, why, where, when or who?

• In order to use the scientific method to answer the question, it must be about something that you can measure, preferably with a number

### Step 2

• Conduct background research –

• Doing so will provide you with valuable information and help you choose the best way to conduct your experiment

### Step 3

• Construct a hypothesis – an educated guess about the question you are trying to answer.

• State your hypothesis as an “If . . . . . , then. . .” statement.

• You must state your hypothesis in a way that you can easily measure.

• Construct your hypothesis so it will help you answer your original question.

### Step 4

• Test your hypothesis with an experiment.

• Your experiment tests whether your hypothesis is true or false.

• Be sure that you are testing only one factor at a time while keeping all other conditions constant

### Controlled Experiment

• A variable is something that can be changed in the experiment.  Everything else must be the same. Only one variable or condition is changed.

### Example

• A good problem question for a controlled experiment can usually be phrased in this form:

• How does one thing (manipulated variable) affect another thing (responding variable)?

• Ex. “How does the temperature of water affect the ability of sugar to dissolve?”

### Variables

• Manipulated Variables – the variable that is changed and controlled by the scientist.

• Responding Variables – the variable that is observed and that changes in response to the manipulated variable.

### NOTE ABOUT VARIABLES:

• MANIPULATED VARIABLE IS THE SAME THING AS THE INDEPENDENT VARIABLE;

• RESPONDING VARIABLE IS THE SAME THING AS THE DEPENDENT VARIABLE;

### Other parts of a controlled experiment

• A control group should be used when conducting an experiment.  This group is not tested. It is the standard for comparison.

### Other parts of a controlled experiment

• Constant – factors in an experiment that remain the same.

• Why?

• No change so there is no influence on the outcome of the experiment.

### Example of Controlled Experiment

• QUESTION:  How will the amount of fertilizer used  affect plant growth?

• HYPOTHESIS:  If the amounts of fertilizer are increased, then there will be greater growth in tomato plants.

• TEST VARIABLE:  The amount of fertilizer used.

### Example, continued

• TEST CONSTANTS:

• The seeds must all come from the same package.

• All seeds must be planted in the same sized pots with similar soil.

• All plants must receive exactly the same amount of water and light.

• The temperature should be the same for all test plants.

### Control group

• Set one group as the CONTROL GROUP.  This group is not given fertilizer.

• Set up two other test groups.  Once receives a certain amount of fertilizer and the other receives twice as much.

### Example, continued

• ANALYSIS OF DATA:  A triple bar graph or line graph of the growth of your plants. CONCLUSION:  Which plant group grew the most?  Why or why not?  What would you do differently next time?

### Back to the scientific method

• Step 5: Collect/record data from your experiment

• Step 6: Draw a conclusion – analyze your results to see if your hypothesis is true or false.

### In the real world

• Repeated experimentation leads to the formation of a:

• Theory – a well-tested explanation that unifies a broad range of observations

### Lab report template

• Lab Report Template

• Title:

• * a brief, concise, yet descriptive title

• Statement of the Problem:

• * What question(s) are you trying to answer? * Include any preliminary observations or background information about the subject

• Hypothesis:

• * Write a possible solution for the problem.* Make sure this possible solution is a complete sentence.* Make sure the statement is testable.

### Lab Report Template

• Materials:

• * Make a list of ALL items used in the lab.

• Procedure:

• * Write a paragraph (complete sentences) which explains what you did in the lab. * Your procedure should be written so that anyone else could repeat the experiment.

• Results (Data):

• * This section should include any data tables, observations, or additional notes you make during the lab. * You may attach a separate sheet(s) if necessary.* All tables, graphs and charts should be labeled appropriately

### Lab report template

• Conclusions:

• * Accept or reject your hypothesis.* EXPLAIN why you accepted or rejected your hypothesis using data from the lab.* Include a summary of the data - averages, highest, lowest..etc to help the reader understand your results* List one thing you learned and describe how it applies to a real-life situation. *Discuss possible errors that could have occurred in the collection of the data (experimental errors)