Scientific Method

Exploring the nature of the scientific process and how to work in groups instead of just alone.

  • What is Science?

    Science is a method of investigation, based on observation, testing hypotheses, measurement, experimentation, and creating theories. This leads to better explanations of the way the world works.

  • How Do You Do Science?

    By making observations about the world, experiments can be designed that test for a dependent variable, which depends on the independent variable (that the scientist controls).

  • What is Life?

    Based on what happens inside of cells, the characteristics of life include: homeostasis, transfers of energy, transportation of molecules, disposal of wastes, creation of new molecules

OGT Questions:

  1. The graph below shows the relationship between maternal age and the incidence of children born with Down syndrome (a condition that results in an individual having an extra chromosome 21).

    What conclusion is best supported by the data?

    1. There is no risk of Down syndrome in children born to mothers under age 34.
    2. The risk of Down syndrome increases dramatically in children born to mothers after age 34.
    3. The risk of Down syndrome doubles in children born to mothers for each year over the age of 34.
    4. There is no correlation between the number of Down syndrome births and age.
  2. When submitting research proposals to funding agencies, investigators must follow ethical guidelines.

    What information in a research proposal would be considered bogus and lead to rejection of the proposal?

    1. plan for monitoring safety
    2. estimates of the number of participants required for the study
    3. data from experiments that have not been performed
    4. projected budget for equipment and laboratory personnel
  3. A teacher gives a student a non-toxic, odorless, white powder to identify. Generate four questions, each regarding a different property of the unknown powder, that could be safely tested and answered in the laboratory.

    Respond in the space provided in your Answer Document. (4 points)

  4. If you were working for the Center for Disease Control and discovered a new, highly dangerous pathogen, what information should be presented to the public that may prevent a widespread epidemic of the disease?

    1. the fatality rate caused by the pathogen
    2. a report on how the pathogen is transmitted from one organism to another
    3. pictures showing microscopic images of the pathogen so they will be familiar with it
    4. a description of the surface receptors found on the pathogen and the immune response
  5. Companies seeking new drug approval are required to conduct clinical trials involving human volunteers. During these trials, people with the disease are separated into different groups. One group receives a placebo (an inert or harmless substance used in controlled experiments). Each of the remaining groups receives a different dose of the drug (i.e., Group A receives a 30 mg dose once a day, Group B receives a 50 mg dose once a day, etc.)

    Describe two reasons for testing new drugs at varying doses.

    Respond in the space provided in your Answer Document. (2 points)