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Scientific Method Observation vs. Inference. Observations. Any information collected with the senses (the skill of describing scientific events!) Quantitative – measureable or countable 3 meters long 4 marbles 50 kilograms 35 degrees Celsius

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observations
Observations
  • Any information collected with the senses (the skill of describing scientific events!)
      • Quantitative – measureable or countable
          • 3 meters long
          • 4 marbles
          • 50 kilograms
          • 35 degrees Celsius
      • Qualitative – describable, not measureable
          • red flowers
          • smells like fresh baked cookies
          • Tastes bitter
science begins with observations
Science begins with observations..
  • Qualitative observations: describe physical qualities, which include color, shape, and texture. (descriptive) *Remember “Quality”
  • Quantitative observations: involve measurements of length, volume, mass, etc. taken with a ruler, graduated cylinder, balance, or other measuring device. (n=numbers)
example
Example:

Qualitative observations: Carmel color skin, black hair, muscular arms with tattoos, mustache, etc.

Quantitative observations:

Height: 1.91 m (191 cm)

Weight: (86 kg)

Arm span: 1.90 m (190 cm)

inference different from observations
Inference (different from observations)
  • Observations: information that is directly seen or measured.
  • Inference: an assumption based on judgment or previous experience.
    • Conclusions or deductions based on observations.
    • The process of drawing a conclusion from given evidence.
  • Examples:
  • Observation-that coconut is very round.
  • Inference-that coconut would make some good coconut juice.
some examples of inference are
Some examples of inference are:
  • Sherry's toddler is in bed upstairs. She hears a bang and crying. Sherry can infer that her toddler fell out of bed.
  • John hears a smoke alarm and smells burnt bacon. John can infer that his neighbor burnt her breakfast.
  • Norman sees cookie crumbs on the floor and chocolate around his son's mouth. Norman can infer that his son got into the cookie jar.
  • Bob eats salad for lunch each day and is a PETA member. His co-workers can infer that he is a vegetarian.
  • At 5 o'clock Jill saw her assistant's office light out and did not hear the sound of typing. Jill can infer that her assistant went home.
  • After her guests went back for second helpings, Mary could infer that they enjoyed her meal.

Inferences are made all the time, every day. By reviewing these examples of

inference you can probably better identify them when you see inferences for

yourself.

practice observation or inference
Practice: Observation OR Inference?
  • I hear people screaming
  • I smell cotton candy, popcorn, and hamburgers
  • That glass of clear liquid is water
  • I see a lot of people
  • That old man is a grandpa
slide8

Look at these two sets of animal tracks.

List 3 OBSERVATIONS

Make an INFERENCE

slide9

Now what do you think?

Make 3 OBSERVATIONS

Make an INFERENCE

slide10

Now what do you think?

Make 3 OBSERVATIONS

Make an INFERENCE