Understanding and Using the Scientific Method
The scientific method is the backbone of every science experiments, and understand it is critical to the success of our science fair experiment. Three different kinds of people can witness the same event, and each come up with a different account of how it occurred. Investigators know that this is true. You’ve probably had some experiences with this phenomenon, as well. Have you ever had other people who attended the same event give you completely different reports of what happened?
These conflicting viewpoints occur because we all see the world differently. We all have beliefs, biases, and perceptions that cause us to view things the way we do.
While these differences are what make us each unique and assure that the world is place and can make it difficult to determine what is really true and what isn’t.
Scientists over the centuries found they faced the same problems when it came to sorting out the truth from nontruths. To solve the problem, they devised a methodical framework within which to work. This framework is called the scientific method, and it’s extremely important to your science fair project.
The Scientific Method Made Easy
The scientific method is a tool that helps scientists and the all of us to solve problems and determine answers to questions in a logical format. It provides step-by-step, general directions to help us work through problems.
The scientific method is a series of steps that serve as guidelines for scientific endeavors. It’s a tool used to help solve problems and answer questions in an objective manner. You probably use the scientific method in your life, everyday without realize it.
There are two forms of scientific method, but they both require the same objective reasoning and steps. The experimental method employs numerical data and graphs, while the descriptive method gathers information through visual observation and interviewing. The experimental method generally is used in physical sciences.
Without realizing it, you’ve just worked through the steps of the scientific method to solve a problem.
For our purposes, there are five steps to the scientific method :
1. Identify a problem.
2. Research the problem.
3. Formulate a hypothesis.
4. Conduct an experiment.
5. Reach a conclusion.
When your flashlight wouldn’t turn on, you knew you had a problem. That took care of the first step (Identify a problem). Your research,the second step, was conducted when you thought back to the last time your flashlight didn’t work. You completed the third step.
You conducted your experiment with the fourth step. You completed the fifth step of the scientific method and proved your hypothesis to be correct.
So you see, the scientific method is not mysterious or difficult, although you can use it to work through some difficult problems.