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The Nature of Science The Nature of Science Science - an attempt to discover order in nature and to use that knowledge to make predictions about what should happen in nature The Nature of Science Primary goal of science?

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The Nature of Science

  • Science - an attempt to discover order in nature and to use that knowledge to make predictions about what should happen in nature


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The Nature of Science

  • Primary goal of science?

    • To discover order in nature and to use that knowledge to make predictions about what should happen in nature


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Involves trying to answer a set of questions:

      • What is the question about nature to be answered?

      • What relevant facts and data are already known?


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Involves trying to answer a set of questions:

      • What new data should be collected and how?

      • After data are collected, can they be used to formulate a scientific law or theory?


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Involves trying to answer a set of questions:

      • How can a hypothesis be invented that explains the data and predicts new facts? Is this the most reasonable hypothesis?


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Involves trying to answer a set of questions:

      • What new experiments can be done to test the hypothesis (and modify it if necessary) so it can become a scientific theory?


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • State the question we wish to answer

      • Collect data

        • Qualitative Data - descriptive observations

        • Quantitative Data - measurements


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Formulate hypotheses

        • Hypothesis - a proposition that is put forth as an explanation for, or prediction of, an observation or a phenomenon


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • An experiment evaluates alternative hypotheses

        • Experiments must be reproducible through controlled experiments


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • Controlled Experiment

          • Experimental Group - a variable (e.g. temperature, concentration, etc.) is changed in a known way

          • Control Group - the chosen variable is not changed


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • Controlled Experiment

          • All components of each group are as identical as possible and experience the same conditions, except for the variable being manipulated in the experimental group


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • Controlled Experiment

          • Any differences between the two groups should result from the variable that was manipulated in the experimental group


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • The best hypothesis is the one that holds under a variety of experiments and which makes predictions that can be used to test the validity of the hypothesis


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • If the results of the experiment do not support the hypothesis, then revise the hypothesis


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • Hypotheses can be tested using a model - an approximate representation or simulation of a system being studied


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • Test hypotheses through experimentation

        • Types of models

          • Conceptual

          • Physical

          • Graphical

          • Mathematical


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • After extensive experimentation, formulate a scientific law

      • Scientific Law - a description of what scientists find happening in nature over and over in the same way, without known exception


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps

      • A scientific law only summarizes a relationship; it does not explain the relationship

        • Boyle’s Law: V = k/P

        • Law of Conservation of Matter


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Steps:

      • If many experiments by different scientists support a particular hypothesis, then the hypothesis becomes a scientific theory


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • Scientific Theory - a well-tested and widely accepted scientific hypothesis


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • A scientific theory:

      • Represents the best explanation for the phenomenon based on current knowledge

      • Is tested through continuous experimentation and perhaps rejected or modified


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The Nature of Science

  • The Scientific Process

    • A scientific theory:

      • Often becomes more accurate as scientists gain more information

      • Is useful for its predictive value


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The Nature of Science

  • Are Scientific Laws and Theories True?

    • Scientists:

      • Can disprove things, but can never prove anything

      • Are more concerned with how useful a theory or law is in explaining and predicting what happens in nature


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The Nature of Science

  • Are Scientists Always Objective and Ethical?

    NO


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The Nature of Science

  • Is Science Good or Bad?

    NEITHER


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