Big Ideas in Science

In: Science

Submitted By zaurez
Words 1562
Pages 7
Scenario 1:
Ask a question:
The scientific method is a cycle of observation, developing a hypothesis, experimentation based on the hypothesis, and identifying conclusions. Through successive rounds of the scientific method hypothesis are refined into theorems that can explain our observations. You reach for the switch and the light doesn't come on. What would you do next? Would you try the switch again? Did I flick it all the way first time? Then I would check to see if there was anything wrong with the electricity, by trying to turn on other lights in the house or looking to see if any electrical appliances were working. And so on and so forth until I found out why the light wasn't working.
Do background research:
The light doesn't come on the first time that I flick the switch. Based on experience I know a few potential causes of this observation, namely: faulty switch, no electricity, or burnt out light bulb. Using this background information I can then form a hypothesis as to why the light bulb didn't come on when I flicked the switch.
Hypothesis: The light bulb didn't come on when I turned the switch because the light bulb has burnt out.
Experiment: Take the old bulb and test it in a known working socket (at a neighbor's). Experiments should ideally have only two possible outcomes. Either they will support the hypothesis or disprove it. If the light doesn't work at my neighbor’s house then there is something wrong with the bulb. If it does then something else is causing the lack of light.

Results: The old light bulb lights up when placed in a working socket at our neighbor’s house. Now we know that there is nothing wrong with that old bulb. But we still don't know why it didn't light in the first place. It's time to test another hypothesis.

Hypothesis 2: The light bulb didn't come on because there is no electricity running to the…...

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