The scientific method is a process for forming
and testing solutions to problems, or theorizing about how or
why things work. It tries to reduce the influence of "faith" or
bias or prejudice of the experimenter so that the process is
valid anywhere in our world.
problem and observe conditions
You observe or wonder about something in your world,
or in your class, and wonder how, why, when, something occurs
Create a short, meaningful title for your
Write out a statement of purpose that
describes what you want to do
Make a careful, step-by-step notation of your
observations. Be objective. Do not guess why something is
happening. That takes place later.
Gather information of similar research. This
is a literature review.
Identify the significant conditions or factors
of the situation.
Summarize the problem in a clear, simple
statement. Emphasize the end result or effect.
Define your research options:
What are possible causes for what you
observed? Could they reliably and consistently predict or
determine the same outcome?
What causes are the least likely to affect
What are the best choices?
Choose the best option or answer to your
problem as your hypothesis.
This will be an "educated guess" based upon both your
observation and past experiences.
State your hypothesis in a simple, clear
Hypothesis: a possible
explanation for a cause and effect of a given situation or
set of factors that can be tested, and can be repetitively
proved right (or wrong!) (Remember: A hypothesis is not
an observation or description of an event, that is in the
first, observation stage!)
Summarize your results and conclusions. Use
graphs and tables to illustrate these.
Refer back to your observations, data, and
hypothesis for consistency
Note difficulties and problems, items for
further research, or what you would do differently if you
If you did not prove your hypothesis, you have
succeeded in another sense. Unsuccessful experiments:
provide information that can lead to answers
by eliminating options;
save someone the trouble of repeating your
suggest other ways of solving similar problems
Remember that research builds on the work of
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