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Using the Scientific Method for Experimental Investigation/Design Investigation

  1. Decide exactly what the question or problem is and state it clearly.
  2. Study the facts to see how they relate to the problem.
  3. Form a hypotheses.
  4. Do the experiment. Try to identify possible hazards and then find ways to run the experiment safely.
    • Design the experiment to provide reasonable assurance that the research objectives have been met.
    • Identify all significant variables affecting the experimental results.
    • Be sure to control those significant variables not manipulated as part of the experiment.
    • Make sure to include a control group or a comparison group in your experiment.
  5. Conduct the experiment.
    • Select ways to measure, observe, and record what happens at each step of the experiment.
    • Use of the metric system is required in all measurements when appropriate.
    • When possible take pictures as you do the experiment.
  6. Estimate experimental error.
    • Experimental error can be as simple as correctly recognizing how accurate the tools used for measurement were for the experiment.
    • A second simple way that experimental error can be expressed is to recognize that sample size or multiple trials increase the accuracy of the data collected.
    • The following statistical analysis will also reflect experimental error:
      • Standard deviation
      • Chi squared
      • T Test
      • Paired T’s
  7. Analyze the results for the experiment.        
  8. Form a conclusion. A conclusion should answer the question asked in the purpose. Make sure the conclusion accurately reflects the experiment data collected.