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Chapter 1:


What Science Is

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

What Science Is

Has had early contributions from the Greeks, the

Romans, the Chinese, and the Arabs.

It even has beginnings that precede recorded


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

relate to how much you know

about something to a certain

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
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.

speed mph 'miles per hour' = distance


Scientific Method

Common Steps
1. Recognize a question, a puzzle, or an unexplained
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:



willingness to admit error.

To err is human.

The Scientific Attitude


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


A synthesis of a large body of information that

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

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.


PhysicsThe Basic Science

Life sciences include biology, zoology, and

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.