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2.6: Review

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    After completing this chapter you should be able to...

    • Describe the purpose of science.
    • Distinguish between objective and subjective observations.
    • Distinguish between quantitative measurements and qualitative observations.
    • Distinguish between inductive and deductive reasoning and relate them to descriptive and hypothesis-based science.
    • Outline the steps of the scientific method and explain its cyclical nature.
    • Distinguish between manipulative experiments and observational studies. 
    • Identify the types of variables, control group, and replicates in a scientific study.
    • Discuss the importance of peer review.
    • Distinguish between basic and applied science and provide examples of the value of basic science.

    Science is a means of systematically gathering information about the natural world. Science is based on objective observations, and following the scientific method helps scientists limit bias. Both induction and deduction are important to the scientific method. Observations lead to a question and hypothesis, an example of inductive reasoning. Making falsifiable predictions based on the hypothesis and testing them through manipulative experiments or observational studies requires deductive reasoning. Finally the results are collected and scientists conclude whether the data support the hypothesis. The scientific method is a cyclical process, in which the latter steps of the process can lead back to earlier steps.

    Scientists publish their findings in scientific journals, which require peer review.

    Applied science focuses on solving modern problems, but basic science simply focuses on expanding knowledge. However, the findings of basic science can later have useful applications.


    Melissa Ha (CC-BY-NC)

    This page titled 2.6: Review is shared under a CC BY-NC license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Melissa Ha and Rachel Schleiger (ASCCC Open Educational Resources Initiative) .

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