Did you know that the scientific method dates back to Aristotle? Since then it’s been refined by great thinkers like Plato, Sir Francis Bacon, and Thomas Aquinas.
The reason was simple – they wanted to create a unified way to conduct scientific research. It’s not enough to simply seek knowledge, you have to understand how to seek knowledge in a consistent way. Today, the current iteration of the scientific method is taught in classrooms across the globe, allowing kids to understand how to think and experiment with the world around them.
If you’ve ever wondered, “What is the scientific method?” you’re not alone. Many science hobbyists find themselves wondering this exact question! Well, wonder no more.
We’ve put together this brief guide to the scientific method, so read on to learn all about it!
What Is the Scientific Method?
The scientific method definition is that it’s a simple structure for conducting an experiment. It’s a guideline for how to test theories and answer questions. It’s not a set of hard and fast rules that every scientist uses, but it serves as a valuable framework.
The Scientific Method in Order
The scientific method is best thought of in steps. The scientific method steps outline your experiment so every possible angle is considered.
The first step is to ask a question. What is it you’re wondering about? Your question doesn’t have to have a quantitative answer, it can be more free form, such as “How do trees mitigate erosion?”
The second step is to conduct your research. This means reading material that’s already out there, identifying mistakes in previous research, and thinking of a way to conduct your experiment.
Then, you have to come up with your hypothesis. Based on your research, what do you think will happen during your experiment?
The fourth step is the most fun. You finally get to conduct your experiment! Make sure to get all the supplies you need (we like to get ours from this company) and get your hands dirty!
During your experiment, you should make sure to keep detailed notes because the fifth step is analyzing your data and forming a conclusion. If your predictions weren’t accurate, consider why that might have been the case. Even if your experiment supported your hypothesis, consider testing it again to confirm.
If parts of your experiment didn’t work like you thought they would, or if you made mistakes, don’t be afraid of running it again. The last step of the scientific method is to communicate your results, so you always want to make sure that you feel confident that your experiment was conducted to the best of your abilities!
Broaden Your Understanding of the World Today
The scientific method is intended to give you a way to understand your surroundings in a concrete way. Whatever questions you’re wondering about, you now have a framework for answering them. Pick up some supplies and start experimenting today!
If you enjoyed learning what is the scientific method, you’ll love our other content! Check out our blog for more tips, tricks, and how-tos!