Have you ever had a problem that you needed to solve or a question that you needed answered? How did you go about finding the solution or answer? Scientists use a systematic approach called the scientific method to obtain reliable knowledge that results in “good” science as opposed to haphazard or incomplete “bad” science. This problem-solving approach is not only for scientists, however. It is a useful method for anyone seeking solid answers to questions. For this week’s Discussion, you will be asked to think about a time in your life when you may have used the scientific method to answer a problem.
To prepare for this Discussion:
- Review the scientific method and information about what makes good science on pages 10–14 of the course text, The Good Earth.
- Also review the following websites from the Learning Resources:
- How the Scientific Method Works
- What Is Inquiry?
By Day 3
Post your own explanation of the role and importance of critical thinking and of using the scientific method—both in an earth science class and in everyday life. Next, briefly describe a situation in your own life where you used the scientific method, or elements of the scientific method, to solve a problem. Your description should:
- Describe whether the process you followed was either inductive or deductive.
- Identify your observations and hypotheses.