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Science . What does science mean to you ???. To scientists… It is a way of learning about the natural world…. using a process designed to reduce the chance of being misled. What Science Is Not. Science is not just the accumulation of facts. Science does not “prove” something to be true.

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To scientists it is a way of learning about the natural world
To scientists…It is a way of learning about the natural world…

using a process designed to reduce the chance of being misled.


What science is not
What Science Is Not

  • Science is not just the accumulation of facts.

  • Science does not “prove” something to be true.

  • Science is not intended to answer “right or wrong” questions…that is for philosophy, ethics & religion.

  • Science does not deal with supernatural or magical.


Some definitions
Some Definitions

  • Hypothesis = a possible explanation for an observed phenomenon or a possible answer to a question

    –Must be able to generate testable deductions

  • Theory = conceptual framework that explains a variety of observations, is supported by experimental evidence and is capable of predicting new phenomena

    –Not “just a guess,” as used in everyday language


The scientific method
The Scientific Method

1. Observation

2. Question

4. Multiple

Hypotheses

3. Literature Review

5. Deductions

6. Tests

7. Tentative

Conclusions

8. Peer Review


Everyone uses science scientists just use it consciously and follow some basic rules
Everyone uses science.Scientists just use it consciously and follow some basic rules.

Next is an example of using the process of science to answer a question you’ve probably had to answer many times when you flick on a light switch and the light doesn’t turn on.

– “Why didn’t the light turn on?”


1 observation
1. OBSERVATION

The light doesn’t turn on


2 question
2. QUESTION

Why didn’t the light turn on?


3 literature review
3. LITERATURE REVIEW

Find out what lights require to function and what can cause them not to function.


4 multiple hypotheses
4. MULTIPLE HYPOTHESES

What are all the possible answers (hypotheses) to the question?

H1: A fuse was blown

H2: The lamp is unplugged

H3: The light bulb is burned out

You need to think of many hypotheses to avoid jumping to a conclusion


5 deductions predictions
5. DEDUCTIONS (PREDICTIONS)

For each hypothesis, determine what evidence (data) would be required to refute or support the hypothesis?

Examples:

1) If the fuse is blown, then no appliances will work

2) If the lamp is unplugged, then the light will work when the lamp is plugged in

3) If the light bulb is burned out, then it will rattle when shaken


6 tests experiments
6. TESTS/ EXPERIMENTS

Conduct tests to collect actual data

  • Examples:

  • Turn on the other appliances

  • Make sure lamp is plugged in

  • 3) Shake the light bulb & listen for rattle


7 tentative conclusions
7. TENTATIVE CONCLUSIONS

Compare actual results to predicted results for each hypothesis and record which hypotheses were supported and which were refuted in a report for publication.

When actual results are the same as the expected results for an hypothesis, the hypothesis is supported; when actual results differ from the expected results, then the hypothesis is refuted.


7 tentative conclusions1
7. TENTATIVE CONCLUSIONS

Which hypotheses were supported/refuted by the actual data?

H1refuted -Other appliances worked

H2refuted -Lamp was plugged in

H3 supported-Bulb rattled when shaken

Tentative Conclusion: Light bulb was burned out

Test H3 again by trying a functioning

light bulb in the lamp!


8 peer review
8. PEER REVIEW

Write up report (introduction, methods, results, discussion) & submit to a scientific journal that is peer-reviewed, meaning that your methods, data, tentative conclusions will be scrutinized by scientists whose reputation is at stake if they allow your report to be published.

Information is not scientific until it has been published in a peer-reviewed, scientific journal.


The process of science review of example
The Process of Science: Review of Example

  • Observation: Ex. The light doesn’t turn on

  • Question: Ex. Why didn’t the light turn on?

  • Literature Review: Ex. Read about light failures

  • Multiple Hypotheses: Ex. Light bulb burned out, etc.

  • Deductions to get Predicted Results: if the bulb is burned out and I shake the bulb, then I predict it should rattle.

  • Conduct Actual Experiments to get Actual Results:I shook the bulb and it rattled.

  • Tentative Conclusions:because the bulb rattled when shaken as predicted by the burned out bulb hypothesis, I therefore tentatively conclude that a likely explanation for the light not turning on is that the bulb is burned out.

  • Peer Review: submit report to peer-reviewed scientific journal


Science rules of thumb
Science Rules of Thumb

  • 1. Maximize Sample Size:

    • The larger the sample size the more accurate the estimate.

  • 2. Representative Sample:

    • The sample must represent the variation in the population.E.g., Use random or systematic sampling to avoid biasing the data.

    • E.g., you don’t want your sample to include only men if you are studying the effect of a medicine on people.


Science rules of thumb1
Science Rules of Thumb

  • 3. Use Controlled Experimentfor Causal Questions

    • Use to answer questions concerning what caused something to happen.Two groups (control & experimental) are treated identically except for the one factor being tested


Mealworm mystery this is just for fun to test your understanding of controlled experiments
MEALWORM MYSTERYThis is just for fun to test your understanding of controlled experiments

  • A student conducted 3 experiments to determine how mealworms respond to light and moisture.

  • All variables except light and moisture were held constant from experiment to experiment.

  • For each experiment, 12 mealworms were placed in the center of a box and then their positions were recorded 24 hours later.


Experiment 1
EXPERIMENT 1

mealworm

QUESTION: Are mealworms attracted to light?

QUESTION 2: Are mealworms affected by moisture?

Answer?

You can’t tell; it could be either or both


Experiment 2
EXPERIMENT 2

QUESTION: Are mealworms affected by light?

QUESTION 2: Are mealworms affected by moisture?

Answers?

They are affected by light; we don’t know about moisture


Experiment 3
EXPERIMENT 3

QUESTION: Are mealworms affected by light?

QUESTION 2: Are mealworms affected by moisture?

Answers?

With just this experiment, it seems they didn’t move


Experiment 31
EXPERIMENT 3

Using the information from the other 2 experiments…

QUESTION: Are mealworms affected by light?

QUESTION 2: Are mealworms affected by moisture?

Answers?

Yes and Yes (despite attraction to light, they avoided wet


The experiments
THE EXPERIMENTS

2

1

mealworm

Without the controlled experiment we would know nothing!

3

QUESTION: Which variables affect mealworm movement based on the above experiments (note that movement may be either toward or away from something)? A. Light but not moisture. B. Moisture but not light. C. Both light and moisture.D. Neither light nor moisture. E. Can’t tell.


In conclusion science is
In conclusion, science is:

  • a process for learning about the natural world, using a method designed to reduce the chance of being misled.

  • what most people use unconsciously to solve everyday problems

    Scientists just consciously apply the process to answer questions about the world & communicate the results through peer reviewed journals


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