Introduction to science

Document Sample
Introduction to science Powered By Docstoc
					 Introduction to science
• What is science?

 Science is a technique: a way of seeking
 principles about the physical world.
 Science tries to verify these principles
 via experiments and observations.

Scientists collect data (facts) to test
these principles.                    Back to Science Central
The Process of Science

• Science: from a Latin verb meaning
  to know.
• Derived from natural human curiosity.
• Seeks natural causes for natural

                            Back to Science Central
The Process of Science

• Two primary approaches to
 scientific inquiry.

  –Discovery science or inductive
  –Hypothesis-driven or deductive
                          Back to Science Central
Inductive reasoning
• Works from the specific observations
 to a general conclusion.

• Example: Cell Theory based on 200
 years of observations of cells in every
 living specimen ever observed.

                             Back to Science Central
Deductive Reasoning

• Works from a general observation to
  a specific conclusion.
• Ex: If all organisms are made of cells
  and humans are organisms, then
  humans must be made of cells.

Back to Science Central
Hypothesis Driven Science

 • Driven by deductive reasoning.

 • Guided by a hypothesis (a tentative
   answer to a question) based on an

                              Back to Science Central
Hypothesis Driven Science

 • Usually takes the form of a
   prediction, which can be tested.

 • If testing supports hypothesis we can
   accept our hypothesis, if not we look
   for another explanation.

                                 Back to Science Central
• Observation: Flashlight doesn’t
• Question: Why not?

• Hypothesis?
        •The batteries are dead.

                               Back to Science Central
• Prediction: If this hypothesis is
 correct, and I replace the batteries,
 then the flashlight should work.

• If hypothesis is not supported, revise
 and pose a new one.

                                Back to Science Central
The Scientific Method
1.   Observation
2.   Hypothesis
3.   Tests or experiments to obtain data
4.   Data interpretation
5.   Conclusions

                                  Back to Science Central
   OBSERVATION                            The Scientific
     New observations
  are made and previous                     Method
       data observed

 Input from various sources
   used to make a testable

     EXPERIMENTS                       CONCLUSIONS
  The hypothesis is tested by         The results are analyzed
      experiments and/or              and hypothesis is either
     further observations              supported or rejected

                                   SCIENTIFIC THEORY
Back to Science Central         Many exper. & observations support it
The Scientific Method
• Hypothesis : A tentative assumption
  (an educated guess) to explain something
    and to test it.
Theory: A hypothesis that has survived
     many tests (and competing
     hypotheses have been disproven).
Law:  A theory that has been tested
     extensively and, based on lots of
     evidence, and no data has been
     found in disagreement.        Back to Science Central
 Science is always a ‘work in
 • Science evolves and is ever changing;
   science is a process…

What someone learned 10 years ago
     may not be accepted today…
Similarly, what is accepted today
     may no longer be valid 10 years
     from now…
                                  Back to Science Central
       The End

• Back to Science Central