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Scientific Inquiry

Topics

How Scientists Think

The process of inquiry

How Science Develops

Metric System

References

How Scientists Think

- Scientists use the skills of observing,

inferring, and predicting.

How Scientists Think

- Observing Using one or more senses to gather

information - Inferring An interpretation based upon

observation and prior knowledge

How Scientists Think

- Predicting The process of forecasting what will

happen based upon evidence

Observing

- There are two types of observations
- Qualitative
- Observations that deals with characteristics that

are not expressed in numbers

Observing

- Quantitative
- Observations that deals with numbers, amounts, or

measurements

Inferring

Based upon reasoning from what is already known

(evidence/data)

Predicting

Predictions are based upon past

experience, data, or evidence.

A guess has no evidence, data, or past

experience to support it.

TOC

The process of Inquiry

- Scientific inquiry refers to the different ways

scientists study the natural world. - Scientific inquiry use a process called the

scientific method to gain scientific knowledge.

Scientific Method

- Collection of scientific facts through

observation and measurements - Development of one or more working hypotheses to

explain the facts

Scientific Method

- Development of experiment to test the hypothesis
- Acceptance, modification, or rejection of

hypothesis based on extensive testing.

Scientific Process

- The scientific method is divided into a series

of steps or a process

Scientific process

- Identify the problem/pose a question
- Investigate the problem
- Formulate a hypothesis
- Test the hypothesis

Scientific Process

- Collect and organize data
- Analyze data
- Draw a conclusion
- Communicating

Identify the ProblemPose a Question

Problems and questions that can be addressed

through observation are the type that can be

answered through scientific inquiry

Scientific Inquiry can not answer Questions

based upon opinion, judgment or values.

Investigate the problem

- Once a problem has been identified or a question

asked, then the additional information is

gathered - This is done to find out what is already known at

to determine a hypothesis

Formulate a hypothesis

- A hypothesis is a possible answer to a scientific

question or problem - The hypothesis must be testable through

observation or experimentation.

Test the hypothesis

- In order to determine whether a hypothesis is

true or not, scientists design experiments to

test the hypothesis.

Test the Hypothesis

- Scientist must be able to identify and/or account

for the various types of variables (factors) that

can change in an experiment - The two main types of variables are
- Independent (manipulated) Variable
- Dependent (Responding) Variable

Collect and organize data

- During the experiment data/information must be

collected and organize into a format so that it

can be used - Data may be organized into
- Tables
- Graphs

Analyze data

- Once the data is organized scientists must

determine what the data is saying.

The data is organized into a graph which

says that as time increases the distance is not

changing. This means that the object is not

moving.

Drawing a Conclusion

- After scientists interpret their data, they draw

a conclusion about their hypothesis. - A conclusion states whether or not the data

supports the hypothesis.

Communication

- Communicating is the sharing of ideas and

conclusions with others through writing

(publications) and speaking.

Communicating

- When scientists share the design of an experiment

other scientists can repeat that experiment to

check results.

Communicating

- Communicating information often leads to new

questions, new hypotheses and new investigations

How Science Develops

- Scientists use models and develop laws and

theories to help explain the natural world.

How Science Develops

- Scientific Models
- A representation of an object or a process
- Scientific laws
- A statement that describes what scientists expect

to happen every time under a particular set of

conditions - Scientific Theories
- An explanation for a wide range of observations

or experimental results

Scientific Model

- There are three basic types of models scientists

use to represent objects and/or processes - Physical model
- Computer model
- Mathematical Model

Physical Model

Model of a car made out of meat

Computer Model

3D computer model of bullet car

Mathematical Model

A mathematical schematic of a car during

derailment

Scientific law

- A scientific law describes an observed pattern in

nature without attempting to explain it. - Example Law of gravity

Scientific Theory

- A scientific theory is determined when many

observations can be connected by one explanation - Examples Atomic Theory
- Future evidence may not support a theory in which

case the theory may be modified or discarded all

together.

Summary of Scientific Process

The Metric System

- The standard system of measurement used by

scientists around the world is known as the

Système International dUnités (SI). - SI units are based on multiples of 10.
- Each unit is 10 times larger than the next

smallest unit and one tenth the size of the next

largest unit

Base Metric Units

- Scientist have to measure
- Lengths
- Mass/Weight
- Volume
- Temperature
- Time
- There is a base unit for each of these measures

Base Units

Measure Base Unit

Length Meter (m)

Mass Gram (g)

Volume Liter (l)

Temperature Celsius (oC)

Time Seconds (s)

SI Prefixes

Kilo (k) 1000

Milli (m) 0.001

meter liter gram

Centi (c) 0.01

Hecto (h) 100

Deci (d) 0.1

Deka (da) 1O

Metric Nomenclature

The describing of a measurement depends on how

big or small the measure is in relation to the

base unit.

For example A 6 inch ruler measures 15.24cm

0.1524m 0.0001524km

Each measure is the same length, but it is much

more convenient to use centimeters to describe

the length of this ruler.

Metric Conversions

The relationship between two units is called the

conversion factor. Conversion factors are used

to calculate the conversion of SI units.

For example 1km 1000m This is the

relationship between kilometers and meters

Metric Conversions

Base

1000

100

10

1/10

1/100

1/1000

meter gram liter

Deca

Hecto

Kilo

Deci

centi

milli

Metric units may be easily converted by moving

the decimal point. For example to convert 80cm

to meters move the decimal point 2 space to the

Left. Therefore 80 cm becomes 0.8 meters

Metric Conversions

Base

1000

100

10

1/10

1/100

1/1000

meter gram liter

Deca

Hecto

Kilo

Deci

centi

milli

To convert 0.75km to meters move the

decimal point 3 spaces to the right. Therefore

0.75km becomes 750meters

General Rule If going from high unit to low unit

move decimal point to the Right If going from low

unit to high unit move decimal point to the Left

Using Conversion Factors

To convert any measure from kilometers to meters

or from meters to kilometers the measure is

multiplied by the conversion factor which is

written as a fraction km or m

m km depending on

what unit of the original measure is.

Calculating the Conversion

Converting 80 centimeters into meters.

The conversion factor for centimeters to Meters

is 1m 100cm (1m/100cm) 80 centimeters is

multiplied by the conversion factor

80 cm x 1m 80cm 0.8meters

100cm 100cm

References

FCAT Power Words June 26, 2007 Sarasota Middle

school www.sarasotamiddleschool.com/assets/image

/infer.jpg

Frank, David et. al. Science Explorer Physical

Science Boston MA, Pearson Prentice Hall. 2007

H, Mark Entry 78 Biome Blogs http//biomeblog.ty

pepad.com/the_bioes_blog/meat_carthumb.jpg

Predicting The Future June 26, 2007 CSL Cartoon

Stock www.cartoonstock.com/lowres/shr11301.jpg

Szilagyi, Mike 3D Bullet Car Philadelphia Trolley

Tracks www.phillytrolley.org/IMAGES/BULWIRE.gif

Tank Car Structural Integrity Volpe Center

Structures and Dynamics Division www.volpe.dot.go

v/sdd/images/tankcar3.gif June 27, 2007

References

Tarbuck, Edward and Fredrick Lutgens. Earth

Science 2006 Pearson Prentice Hall Boston MA.

Its Your planet http//geoweb.tamu.edu/courses/

geol100/grossman/sci.method.jpg