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What is Environmental “Science” ?. A mix of sciences (ecology, chemistry, biology, math) and social studies (municipal, Provincial, and National government,

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Presentation on theme: "What is Environmental “Science” ?. A mix of sciences (ecology, chemistry, biology, math) and social studies (municipal, Provincial, and National government,"— Presentation transcript:

1 What is Environmental “Science” ?

2 A mix of sciences (ecology, chemistry, biology, math) and social studies (municipal, Provincial, and National government, law, art, and politics). A study of how humans relate to their environment and the impacts we have on it....both positive and negative. A study of the physical environment, and how its chemistry and life are impacted by us. A relatively new science, its grown out of “ecology” because of these paradigm shifts. It is a “science” because it uses a “scientific method” to investigate issues and attempt to answer questions about the “biotic” and “abiotic” parts of the environment.

3 Who is a “scientist” anyway ?

4 Anyone who uses “observations” (gathered data) to check if what we think is going on is actually the case. Experiments prove or disprove these ideas. A “scientific method” is a planned, organized way of solving a problem or answering a question. It goes like this... 1. Identify a problem or pose a question 2.Suggest a hypothesis that tries to explain your observations 3.Design a “controlled” experiment that will prove or disprove your hypothesis

5 A good (“controlled”) experiment..... Is repeatable, reliable, trustworthy, carried out more than once Has only one thing in it changing each time it is done (the variable), so that you can make more accurate conclusions about what happens after the variable changed (The part you change is called the “independent variable”, and the effect it has is called the “dependent variable”) keeps every other part of the experiment the same each time it is done ( each thing that stays the same is called a “control”). There should be a lot of controls. records measurements taken and observations made as the experiment happens data is organized into graphs, charts, or tables...used to look for patterns and make conclusions might prove or disprove your hypothesis

6 Science is a way of thinking, asking questions, and problem solving. Scientists use certain skills and steps to study our world. To “think scientifically”, you have to be able to do the following : Make observations (observing) Make inferences (inferring) Classify Communicate Make predictions Make a hypothesis (hypothesizing)

7 Observing Means collecting information using smell, touch, taste, sound, and sight. Sometimes special equipment is used to help collect information. For example, microscopes help you see what normally can’t be seen. There are two kinds of observations : qualitative and quantitative. When you are describing something using your senses or opinion, you are making a qualitative observation. For example, “The table tops feel smooth” is a qualitative observation. When you measure or calculate something, you are making a quantitative observation. For example, “The average weight of an eider duck is 3.2 Kilograms” is a quantitative statement.

8 Inferring Means giving an explanation of observations you make. Usually your past experiences help you to do this. Many times the word “because” is used in a sentence to do this. For example, “ The wood on the table is smooth because it has been sanded” is an inference. It explains why the table is smooth.

9 Predicting Explaining what you believe will happen in the future, using what you learned and know about the past. It’s not a guess, and isn’t necessarily right. There are two kinds of predicting : interpolating and extrapolating. Interpolating means filling in the gaps or missing pieces in a set of numbers. For example, fill in the missing number below : Amount of berries picked : 1 bucket 2 buckets 3 buckets Weight of the berries : 2 Kg ____ Kg 6 Kg

10 Extrapolating means using a table of data or a graph to make a prediction beyond your last piece of information. How large and Heavy would a 5 yr old Redfish be ?

11 HYPOTHESIZING Means making a sentence that tries to explain how one variable changes another variable. Scientists use a hypothesis when they make up experiments, actually they use an experiment to see if their hypothesis is right or wrong. Usually a hypothesis is a sentence that includes the words “if” and “then”. For example : “If a person eats a lot of junk, then they are more likely to gain weight” is a hypothesis. It tries to explain how eating and a person’s body weight are related - eating changes your weight.

12 To study a problem scientifically...use a SCIENTIFIC METHOD…. 1.Identify a problem or ask a question 2.Make up a hypothesis ( use your observations to guess what is happening or could happen when something changes) 3.Design a test of your hypothesis ( an experiment) 4.Gather all the necessary materials and do your experiment 5.Collect observations during the experiment 6.Make your conclusions : what happened, what you learned, and decide if your hypothesis was right or wrong

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