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Chapter 1:

About
Science

What Science Is
Science

is a body of knowledge that describes the order


within nature & the causes of that order.

is an ongoing human activity that is the


collective effort to gather knowledge & put it into
theories.

What Science Is
Science

Has had early contributions from the Greeks, the


Romans, the Chinese, and the Arabs.

It even has beginnings that precede recorded


history.

What Science Is

Science is a way of knowing about


the world and making sense of it.

Measurements are a hallmark of


good science.

Scientific Measurements
Measurements

relate to how much you know


about something to a certain
standard.

must be repeatable.

The early Greeks were able


to measure the diameter of the
Earth, Earth-moon distance, etc.

Some Early Scientific Measurements

EratosthenesDiameter of Earth

MathematicsThe Language of
Science
Integration of science and mathematics
Ideas of science are unambiguous when
expressed in mathematical terms.

Equations of science provide expressions of


relationships between concepts

Equations are guides to thinking.


ex.
speed mph 'miles per hour' = distance

time

Scientific Method

Common Steps
1. Recognize a question, a puzzle, or an unexplained
fact.
2. Make a hypothesis (educated guess) to resolve
the puzzle.
3. Predict consequences of the hypothesis.
4. Perform experiments or make calculations to
test the predictions.
5. Formulate the simplest general rule that organizes
the three main steps:
hypothesis, predicted effects, experimental findings

Scientific Methods

There is no one scientific method.


In general, scientific methods refer to principles &
procedures for the systematic pursuit of
knowledge involving the recognition and
formulation of a problem, the collection of data
through observations & experiments, and the
formulation and testing of hypotheses.

The Scientific Attitude

The scientific attitude is one of:


inquiry.

experimentation.

willingness to admit error.

To err is human.

The Scientific Attitude

Scientists

search for truth with evidence.


are experts at changing their minds.
must accept experimental findings
test for erroneous beliefs

understand objections and


positions of antagonists.

Scientific Terms

A fact is a close agreement by


competent observers who make
a series of observations about
the same phenomenon.
A scientific hypothesis is an
educated guess that is only
presumed to be factual until
supported by experiment.

Scientific Terms
Law or principle

A hypothesis that has been tested repeatedly


and has not been contradicted

Theory

A synthesis of a large body of information that


encompasses well-tested and verified
hypotheses about certain aspects of the natural
world

Science and Technology

Science is concerned with gathering and


organizing knowledge.
Technology is the use of scientific knowledge
for practical purposes and to provide tools for
further exploration.
KNOWLEDGE

APPLICATION

PhysicsThe Basic Science

Life sciences include biology, zoology, and


botany.
Physical sciences include geology, astronomy,
chemistry, and physics.
Physics is about the nature of basic things such
as motion, forces, energy, matter, heat, sound,
light, and the structure of atoms.
Physics underlies ALL of the sciences.

PhysicsThe Basic Science

Physics is the basic science because its


concepts reach up to the high levels of more
complicated sciences.
An understanding of science can begin with an
understanding of Physics.