Science as Inquiry: GED Test Prep
Whatever their discipline, all scientists use similar methods to study the natural world. In this article, you will learn what abilities are necessary for scientific inquiry and what lies at the root of all science.
All sciences are the same in the sense that they involve the deliberate and systematic observation of nature. Each science is not a loose branch. The branches of science connect to the same root of objective observation, experiments based on the scientific method, and theories and conclusions based on experimental evidence.An advance in one branch of science often contributes to advances in other sciences, and sometimes to entirely new branches. For example, the development of optics led to the design of a microscope, which led to the development of cellular biology.
Abilities Necessary to Do Scientific Inquiry
A good scientist is patient, curious, objective, systematic, ethical, a detailed record keeper, skeptical yet open-minded, and an effective communicator. While there are certainly many scientists who don't posses all these qualities, most strive to obtain or develop them.
Patience is a virtue for any person, but it is essential for a person who wants to be a scientist. Much of science involves repetition. Repetition to confirm or reproduce previous results, repetition under slightly different conditions, and repetition to eliminate an unwanted variable. It also involves waiting—waiting for a liquid to boil to determine its boiling point, waiting for an animal to fall asleep in order to study its sleep pattern, waiting for weather conditions or a season to be right, etc. Both the repetition and the waiting require a great deal of patience. Results are not guaranteed, and a scientist often goes through countless failed attempts before achieving success. Patience and the pursuit of results in spite of difficulties are traits of a good scientist.
Every child asks questions about nature and life. In some people, this curiosity continues throughout adulthood, when it becomes possible to systematically work to satisfy that curiosity with answers. Curiosity is a major drive for scientific research, and it is what enables a scientist to work and concentrate on the same problem over long periods of time. It's the knowing of the how and the why, or at least a part of the answer to these questions, that keeps a scientist in the lab, on the field, in the library, or at the computer for hours.
Objectivity is an essential trait of a true scientist. By objectivity, we mean unbiased observation. A good scientist can distinguish fact from opinion and does not let personal views, hopes, beliefs, or societal norms interfere with the observation of facts or reporting of experimental results. An opinion is a statement not necessarily supported by scientific data. Opinions are often based on personal feelings or beliefs and are usually difficult, if not impossible to measure and test. On the GED Science Exam, answer choices that are opinions will almost always be incorrect answer choices. A fact is a statement based on scientific data or objective observations. Facts can be measured or observed, tested and reproduced. A well-trained scientist recognizes the importance of reporting all results, even if they are unexpected, undesirable, or inconsistent with personal views, prior hypothesis, theories, or experimental results.
- Coats and Car Seats: A Lethal Combination?
- Kindergarten Sight Words List
- Signs Your Child Might Have Asperger's Syndrome
- Child Development Theories
- 10 Fun Activities for Children with Autism
- Social Cognitive Theory
- Why is Play Important? Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development, Creative Development
- GED Math Practice Test 1
- Problems With Standardized Testing
- The Homework Debate