Presentation on theme: "Scientific Method The 7-step process to scientific investigations"— Presentation transcript:
1 Scientific Method The 7-step process to scientific investigations Scientific methods are the ways in which scientists follow steps to answer questions and solve problems.- Life Science, Holt, pg. 10
2 What is the Scientific Method? The Scientific Method is a logical process used to find answersto questions about the world around us.
3 Is there only one Scientific Method? No! There are several versions of this scientific process ranging in the number of steps.However, all versions begin with a question to be answered based on observations of the world around us and provide an organized method for conducting and analyzing an experiment.
4 Which version will we use? We will be using a 7-step version in class with the following steps:Observe and Question.Research the question.Form a hypothesis.Experiment and Observe.Analyze data.Draw Conclusions.Communicate results.
5 Do real scientists use this process? It’s important to note that even though many scientists do use the idea of the Scientific Method for their daily work, they do not necessarily use each of the individual steps.Also, a similar version of the Scientific Method has been adopted by businesses all over the country. It teaches employees and management to diagnose a problem, think about ways of solving that problem, then testing those ideas to try and solve the problem. It’s the same process but with a twist!
6 Step 1: Observe and Question or Establish the Problem What do you want to know or explain?Use observations you have made to write a question that addresses the problem or topic you want to investigate.Your investigation must be observable, measurable and repeatable.What question would you ask if you found these frogs in a pond?
7 Question: What’s causing frog deformities in Minnesota?
8 Step 2: Research the question This is an important step, especially when you do an independent investigation such as a science fair project.Researching your question lets you know if others have done this same experiment before and if so, what their data suggests. If they had a widely accepted conclusion, you may want to try a different angle with your experiment or test a different variable.You should also research the scientific concepts associated with the experiment. For example, if you are testing to see which paper towel brand is the most absorbent, you should research absorbency, paper material, and quality control testing. This will help answer the “WHY?”
9 Dept of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) Veterinarian Library Where might you find information about the problem of frog deformities?InternetDept of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF)VeterinarianLibrary
10 Step 3: Form a hypothesis A hypothesis is a possible solution to a problem or question- an educated guess.#1 The deformities were caused by chemical pollutants in the water#2 The deformities were caused by attacks from parasites living on the frogs#3 The deformities were caused by an increase in ultraviolet light from the sun
11 Before testing a hypothesis scientist must make IF-THEN statements Example:IF a substance in the pond water is causing the deformities, THEN the water from ponds that have deformed frogs will be different from ponds in which no deformed frogs have been found.
12 Take a look at #’s 2 and 3 and form if-then statements #2 The deformities were caused by attacks from parasites living on the frogs#3 The deformities were caused by an increase in ultraviolet light from the sun
13 Possible If-Then Statements Hypothesis #2-If a parasite is causing the deformities, then this parasite will be found more often in frogs that have deformities.Hypothesis #3-If an increase in exposure to ultraviolet light is causing the deformities, then some frog eggs exposed to ultraviolet light in a lab will develop into deformities.
14 Step 4: Experiment and Observe to test your hypothesis Design a procedure that tests your hypothesis to see if your prediction is correct.Record all of your data and observations and put them into a table that is neat and organized.
15 Controlled Experiment An experiment which tests only one factor at a time and consists of a control group and one or more experimental groups.
17 Step 5: Analyze data Is your data reliable? Does it make sense? Put your data into a chart or graph and look for any trends.Pie ChartLine GraphBar Graph
18 Multiple TrialsAt this point it may be necessary to verify your conclusion by repeating the experiment. Each experiment completion is known as a trial.
19 Step 6: Draw conclusions Do your data and observations support your hypothesis?If you cannot make a definite conclusion, you may need to try the experiment again.This means you may either need to rewrite your procedure if it was not specific enough; you may find that your hypothesis was wrong.Example:According to the research, prolonged exposure of frog eggs to UV light caused deformities in frogs.
20 Step 7: Communicate results Report the results of your experiment to let others know what you have learned.This will be represented as either a lab report, oral presentation, or Science Fair display board.Scientists may want to repeat your procedure to see if they get the same results as you. They may also tweak your experiment a little and have a slightly different focus.Also, your report may lead to a new question which may lead to another investigation. This of course brings us right back to the first step again!
21 One Last Thought If your hypothesis was wrong- IT’S OK! Proving a hypothesis wrong is still helpful-either way something is learned!
22 What Did Thomas Edison Say? ..."I have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
26 What Was Our Question?What’s causing frog deformities in Minnesota?
27 Our HypothesisIf an increase in exposure to ultraviolet light is causing the deformities, then some frog eggs exposed to ultraviolet light in a lab will develop into deformities
28 Controlled Experiment An experiment which tests only one factor at a time and consists of a control group and one or more experimental groups.
29 GroupsControl Group- the group left unchangedGroup with no Ultraviolet LightExperimental Group- the group that is changedGroup with different amounts of UV
30 Variables things that are changed Two Types:Independent variable- the one thing you change in an experimentAmount of UV lightDependent variable- what changes based on the independent variableAmount of deformed frogs
34 Data- pieces of information- may be kept in a log Other VocabularyData- pieces of information- may be kept in a logControls- everything kept the same for each groupSurvey- observation of many existing items