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# Science word problem solving steps

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Steps to solve science-related word problems.

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### Science word problem solving steps

1. 1. Science Word Problem Solving Steps Step-by-Step Procedure to Solve algebraic Science Problems
2. 2. Problem Example <ul><li>Here is a typical word problem based on a familiar concept. </li></ul><ul><li>What is the area of a surface that is 2 meters long and 1.5 meters wide? </li></ul>
3. 3. Step One <ul><li>From the problem, list what you already know (the knowns ). Include variable , number and unit for each term. </li></ul><ul><li>In this example, what is given? </li></ul><ul><li>Length = 2 meters </li></ul><ul><li>Width = 1.5 meters </li></ul><ul><li>Knowns: l = 2m w = 1.5m </li></ul>
4. 4. Step Two <ul><li>List what you are solving for as “?” and a unit ( unknown ). </li></ul><ul><li>We are calculating area in this example. </li></ul><ul><li>Unknown: Area = ? square meters </li></ul><ul><li>Unknown: A = ? m 2 </li></ul>
5. 5. Step Three <ul><li>What formula do we need for this problem? </li></ul><ul><li>Write the appropriate formula based upon knowns and unknown </li></ul><ul><li>In this example, the formula we need is Area = Length x width </li></ul><ul><li>A = lw </li></ul>
6. 6. Step Four (if needed) <ul><li>Rewrite the formula to solve it for the unknown, if necessary. </li></ul><ul><li>The example doesn’t need rewritten. We are already solving for area. </li></ul><ul><li>If the unknown was length, we would rewrite the formula, solving for length </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>l = A/w </li></ul></ul></ul>
7. 7. Step Five <ul><li>Put the knowns (numbers and units) in formula </li></ul><ul><li>For this example A = (2m)(1.5m) </li></ul>
8. 8. Step Six <ul><li>Solve the formula, including units with the answer </li></ul><ul><li>For the example Area = 3.0 m 2 </li></ul><ul><li>A = 3.0m 2 </li></ul>
9. 9. <ul><li>This method works for most of the numeric science problems you will encounter, especially ones which involve applying formulas to equations. </li></ul>