# Physical science Lecture 1 Instructor: John H. Hamilton.

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Physical science Lecture 1 Instructor: John H. Hamilton

About this course The goal will be for the students to develop an firm understanding of fundamental concepts within physical science It will be more conceptual than mathematical. It is IMPERITAVE that students understand concepts that can be explained in their own words. When students truly grasp the fundamental concepts they can much more easily excel at mathematical solutions later.

Lecture overview How to get the most out of this course What is science? What is the scientific method? What is physical science?

How to get the most out of this course Take notes! Think! Ask yourself questions! – In lecture – Out of lecture Teach someone what you learn

Questions to ask yourself How would I explain this to a peer How would I explain this to someone with less knowledge than me What is the hardest question that would be asked of me about this if I were teaching it What examples of this could I present to demonstrate the principle

How to tell if you understand a concept it makes logical sense to you based on things you already know you can explain it to others, not just repeat something you heard or read you can use it to make predictions

Example

What science is It is a method of studying the natural world Based on the Greek word “scienta” which means knowledge Nature follows rules. It is the intent of science to learn what those rules are Science attempts to learn these rules through a combination of logic, observation, and experimentation called the scientific method.

The Scientific method (5 steps) 1) observations and/or measurements 2) Hypothesis – A possible explanation for the observation based on an educated “guess” 3) Experimentation – Controlled experiments are performed to determine if the hypothesis should be accepted, rejected, or adjusted

The scientific method continued 4) Theory – If the hypothesis can stand up to sufficient testing a theory emerges. A theory can be successfully used to make predictions. i.e. gravity and planetary motion or projectile motion 5) Law – If a theory can withstand longstanding and rigorous testing a theory can become a law. A law is something that has never been observed to be violated i.e. conservation of energy

Galileo vs Aristotle Aristotle – Greek Philosopher around 350 BC – Believed and taught that that things have their “natural place” that a rock’s natural place was the earth and that is why it falls. He believed that a heavier rock would fall faster than a light Rock. Galileo – 16 th century Scientist. – Disagreed with Aristotle

What Galileo allegedly did Went to the top of the tower of Pissa with 2 balls of different weights Dropped them simultaneously They both hit the ground at the same time!

What Physical Science is What is it? – the traditional sciences excluding biological sciences, the heart of which is Chemistry and Physics. Why study it? – To Allow us to understand AND predict the world and universe around us.

Fields within Physical Science: Descriptions Physics – Most fundamental Physical Science. It is concerned with matter and energy Chemistry – Compositions, structures, and reactions of matter Astronomy – The study of the universe Meteorology – The study of the atmosphere from the surface of the earth out to where it ends in space Geology – The study of the earth

Fields within Physical Science (Diagram)

Lecture Review How to get the most out of this course What is science? What is the scientific method? What is physical science?