TwoOldGuys Study Guides
BI-114 BioConcepts for Teachers
Ch 1. Introduction
1.1. the Science Process
General Characteristics of Science:
Define terms and assumptions
- tomorrow = "when next we meet as a class"
- fact = anything observable, directly or indirectly
- (inherently boring by definition)
- qualitative = descriptive fact, not able to be measured
- quantitative = measurable fact
- data = any collection of facts,
- usually implies quantitative rather than qualitative,
- but not part of definition
- any measurement is an estimate
- "precise" = how repeatable a measurement is,
- "accurate" = how close to actual value an estimate is
examples of assumptions:
- a fundamental premise (assumption) of statistics
- The average of several estimates is 'better' than any one estimate, and
- variance (standard deviation) about mean estimates precision
- [within estimates, W/I].
- the Central Limit Theorem [a provable mathematical theorem]
- The average of several means [Grand Mean]
is more accurate than any one mean,
- and the assumption:
- variance about the Grand Mean estimates accuracy
- [between estimates, B/T].
- deductive reasoning - Sherlock Holmes.
- inductive reasoning - if A and B then C
Willingness to abandon theories, given new facts or better theories
Experimental verification of theories
Communication of results
a [not "The"] Scientific Method:
In the lab Science is, or should be, "hands-on" or discovery method!
1. ask simple questions
2. guess answer
- (we spell guess "h y p o t h e s i s")
- a hypothesis should:
- a) predict some observable event which will occur if conditions are met
- b) but event will not occur if conditions are not met.
3. conduct experiment to test hypothesis
- experimental group where conditions are met
- control group where conditions are not met
4. draw conclusions
- If event = T in experimental, AND event = F in control
- shout "Eureka! I proved my hypothesis to be true."
- If event = F in experimental, OR event = T in control
- shout "Eureka, I proved my hypothesis to be false."
5. write lab report
- (at Ancilla College, use MLA format)
- what are your question and your hypothesis?
- provide any appropriate library research or other background information,
with appropriate citations.
- Procedures (Materials and Methods)
- like a recipe, in sufficient detail that anyone could repeat the experiment.
- what supplies are needed (be specific), and how much of each.
- what to do with the supplies.
- what happened? qualitative and/or quantitative data; "just the facts..."
- tables, graphs, pictures, etc.
- the hypothesis is true!
- the hypothesis is false.
- [optional] how does this change our concept of how the Universe works?
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