# Hypothesis

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```					                                   Kent State University
College of Architecture and Environmental Design
ARCH 45591/55591
Environmental Technology III: The Secret Life of Buildings
Spring 2005

Definitions
1. class: a process of examining expressions and data for the purpose of finding pattern, trends, or
behavior and deducing a conclusion proving or disproving an assumption.
Hypothesis:
1. Language: a tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test its logical or empirical
consequences. It is the antecedent clause of a conditional statement
2. Class: a statement that describes a relationship between two variables. The statement is based on
a prior knowledge or assumption about a phenomenon under consideration that may be proven or
disproven as a result of analysis of data collected.
Hypothesis1: A hypothesis is simply a testable statement about some phenomenon. In effect, it is a
question converted to a statement that can be scientifically investigated. The word scientific does not
necessarily imply complex, or mathematical, or involving expensive equipment; it means rational (as
in logical). A good hypothesis should address only ONE issue and should involve only ONE “clause”
(no “ands,” “ors,” “ifs,” “buts,” “therefores”). A typical hypothesis might read: “The window sill is
rotting because condensation often forms on the inside of the window pane in cold weather.” The
statement (hypothesis) can be proved or disproved (if disproved, the sill is still rotting . . . there just
must be some other reason). If you want to address more than one issue, write more than one
hypothesis.

While forming your hypothesis, keep five things in mind:
 The hypothesis should be reasonably “narrow” – in other words, dealing with shading on the
south façade is preferable to dealing with shading on the whole building;
 The hypothesis should be testable in the time available for this assignment – in other words, don’t
propose measuring summer or annual average performance of some variable;
 The hypothesis should be measurable (either quantitatively or qualitatively) – in other words,
avoid hypotheses that come from “rhetorical” questions (What was the designer thinking?”)
 Remember that you will conduct this investigation – in other words, avoid efforts that require
equipment not likely available or access to spaces that are not accessible

 Choose the positive version as your null hypothesis: i.e. assume a relationship
 Try to avoid subjective evaluation and terminology: i.e. better or acceptable, etc…
 Avoid long hypotheses
 Choose hypotheses that are directly testable: i.e. avoid something like driving in sunny winter
days increases fuel efficiency
 Many will follow after you come up with them 

1
Agents of Change web site- http://aoc.uoregon.edu/documents/teaching/index.shtml
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Extracted from the previous source

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