Scientific Inquiry

Term Definition
Science The study of the natural world through observations and logical reasoning; leads t a body of knowledge
Observing The process of using one or more of your senses to gather information
Inferring The process of making an inference, an interpretation based on observations and prior knowledge
Predicting The process of forecasting what will happen in the future based on past experience or evidence
Chemistry The study of properties of matter and how matter changes
Physics The study of matter, energy, motion, and forces, and how they attract
Hypothesis A possible explanation for a set of observations or answer to a scientific question
Parameters A factor that can be measured in an experiment
Communicating The process of sharing ideas with others through writing and speaking
Model A representation of an object or process
Scientific Theory Well- tested explanation for a wide range of observations or experimental results
Scientific Law A statement that describes what scientist expect to happen every time under a particular set of conditions
scientific inquiry The ongoing process of discovery in science.
manipulated variable The one variable parameter that scientists change during an experiment.
responding variable The variable parameter that changes as a result of changes to the manipulated variable, or independent, variable in an experiment.
controlled experiment An experiment in which only one parameter is changed at a time
qualitative Qualitative data is observations that do not involve numbers
quantitative Quantitative data is data that is measurements and numbers
graph A picture information from a data table;shows the relationship between variables
vertical axis A line that runs up and down along the side of a graph, on which the responding variable(or dependant variable) is labled
horizantal axis A line that runs left to right along the bottom of a graph, on which the manipulated variable(or independent variable) is labled
origin The (0,0) point on a line graph where the x-axis and y-axis cross on a graph
coordinate A pair of numbers used to determine the position of a point on a graph
data point A point on a graph showing the location of a piece of data
line of best fit A smooth line that reflects the general pattern in a graph
linear graph A line graph in which the data points yield a straight line
slope The steepness of a line on a graph, equal to its vertical change divided by its horizontal change
nonlinear graph A line graph in which the data points do not fall along a straight line
data Facts, figures, and other evidence gathered through observations

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