Scientific Methods

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Scientific Methods - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Scientific Methods. Section 1.3. Observations. Using the senses to gather information Scientific methods begin with observations Good observations lead to testable predictions. Form a Question. After making an observation, a problem or question is stated

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Scientific Methods

Section 1.3

Observations
• Using the senses to gather information
• Scientific methods begin with observations
• Good observations lead to testable predictions
Form a Question
• After making an observation, a problem or question is stated
• The question is based on information that you want to reveal about your observations
Hypothesis
• Develop a testable prediction
• A hypothesis is tested by conducting experiments
• The hypothesis may be supported by evidence but is never PROVED
Gather Data
• Includes all information that scientists gather
• Quantitative data= Measured in numbers

(measurements, temperature, weight)

• Qualitative data= descriptive
Conduct Experiment
• A variable is tested and compared to a control group
• Experimental group= the group subjected to a specific factor
• Control group= identical to experimental group except for the factor

(used for comparison)

Variables
• Independent variable= the factor being tested (example: fertilizer)
• Dependent variable= the factor that is being measured (example: plant growth)
• The dependent variable results from the independent variable
Organize and Analyze Data
• Data should be placed in tables, charts, and graphs
• Statistical analysis determines whether or not the data supports the hypothesis
Form Conclusion
• Based on the conducted experiment, the results are summarized into a conclusion
• Provides an explanation supported by data
Publish Research
• Valid experiments can be published in scientific journals
• If proper protocol has been followed, even student research can be published
Inferences
• Conclusions made on the basis of facts or premises rather than on direct observations
• Example: where there is smoke, there must be fire
Theories and Laws
• Theory= an explanation based on many observations supported by experimental results (example: theory of evolution)
• Law= a rule of nature that sums up related observations and experimental results

(example: law of gravity)

Implementing Scientific Methods
• Problem solving skills are used to solve a wide variety of global problems such as human infectious diseases
• Communication allows scientists to build on the work of others