Methods of Scientific Investigation

Term Definition
Science the investigation and exploration of natural events and the new information that results from those investigations
observation using one or more of your senses to gather information and take note of what occurs.
inference a logical explanation of an observation that is drawn from prior knowledge or experience.
hypothesis a possible explanation about an observation that can be tested by scientific investigations.
prediction a statement of what will happen next in a sequence of events.
technology practical use of scientific knowledge, especially for industrial or commercial use.
scientific theory an explanation of observations or events based on knowledge gained from many observations and investigations.
scientific law describes a pattern or an event in nature that is always true.
critical thinking comparing what you already know with the information you are given in order to decide whether you agree with it.
variable any factor in an experiment that can have more than one value.
dependent variable the factor measured or observed during an experiment.
independent variable the factor that you want to test.

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