What is the Scientific Method?4 The scientific method is a series of steps that scientists use to answer questions and solve problems.4 It is used to organize observations and keep your investigation focused.4 The scientific method has several steps that must be followed (in the correct order) to help guide you through your scientific investigation. 3
History of the Scientific Method4 The history of the scientific method is a fascinating and long one, covering thousands of years of history.4 The development of the scientific method involves some great scientists and philosophers.4 The Greeks are credited with developing the scientific method that we recognize and still use today. 5
Aristotle4 Aristotle is regarded as the father of science and was the first to realize the importance of an organized system to carry out scientific investigations.4 Aristotle followed three steps in his version of the scientific method:4 1. Study what others have written about the subject.4 2. Look for similarities amongst those writings.4 3. Perform an organized study and experimentation on everything related to the subject. 7
Muslim Influence on the Scientific Method4 A great Islamic scholar by the name of Ibn al- Haytham took what Aristotle developed and built upon that.4 He developed a scientific method that is very similar to the one we follow today.4 Here are the steps Ibn followed in his scientific investigations:4 1. State a problem based on observations and experimentations.4 2. Test a hypothesis through experimentation.4 3. Interpret the data from the experiment and come to a conclusion (using mathematics). 94 4. Publish the findings.
Other Scientists4 There were many other scientists that contributed to the development of the scientific method including Sir Frances Bacon, Galileo, Sir Isaac Newton, and Karl Popper.4 Each either added, took away, or changed some steps of the early scientific method to eventually produce the modern scientific method that we use today. 11
Carl Popper Galileo GalileiSir Frances Bacon 12 Sir Isaac Newton
The Modern Scientific Method4 There are 6 steps to the scientific method we use today.4 Step 1: Ask a question.4 Step 2: Form a hypothesis.4 Step 3: Test the hypothesis.4 Step 4: Analyze the results.4 Step 5: Draw conclusions.4 Step 6: Communicate results.4 We will go over each step in detail in separate lessons. 13
Variations4 Of course, as with most scientific methods and procedures there are variations of the scientific method that exist even today.4 In the future you may have teachers that prefer to include additional steps or even leave some steps out all together.4 For this class you will follow the 6 steps described above since all of the lessons will build on those steps. 15