GNED 1003 Science and Technology

Science is a way of thinking much more than a body of knowledge.

Science requires courage to question conventional wisdom: To really THINK of something!

Humans are motivated to find rules/laws that summarize how things work.

The Scientific Method

Cause and Effect: The belief that effects have causes plays a large part in the scientific method. Scientists make observations, gather information, and data and use the scientific method.

1. Intrigue: The first stage is intrigue in a problem. However, some discoveries are by chance.

2. Understanding the Problem/Learning about the Subject:Once the problem is firmly grasped, the scientist learns as much as possible about the subject.

Models: The scientist may design a model to simulate a situation.

3. Hypothesis: After data is collected and analyzed, the scientist formulates a hypothesis ( a guess).

4. Testing the Hypothesis: The scientist then designs experiments to test the hypothesis. The scientist then collects data from the results of the experiments.

5. Hypothesis is validated or revised. Analysis of the data will suggest either validity of the hypothesis or revision of the hypothesis.

6. Others may test the hypothesis with other cases


A theory is an idea, model, or explanation that has been tested , analyzed, and accepted by the scientific community. The theory is accepted until new information disproves the hypothesis.

Scientific Theory:

A model of universe; a set of rules that relates quantities to observations we make.

A Good Theory: when it satisfies 2 Things:

1. It accurately describes a large class of observations on the basis of a model with few arbitrary elements.

2. It must make definite predictions about the results of future observations. Any physical theory is provisional.

A Hypothesis can never be proved. You can disprove a theory by finding one observation that disagrees.

A good theory is characterized by making predictions that can be disproved or falsified by observations; then a new theory follows.


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copyright 2003Karen E.Hamilton