Experimental Design Science Olympiad 2013-

Created by mrkelly Teacher

Indepent Variable

in an experiment, the condition that is tested because it affects the outcome of the experiment

Dependent Variable

the outcome factor; the variable that may change in response to manipulations of the independent variable


the act of conducting a controlled test or investigation


a collection of facts from which conclusions may be drawn


a visual display of observations or data


descriptions of the way work is to be done


the process of studying of something closely and critically


data and observations gathered from the experiment

Data Table

A grid that displays the data plotted in a chart.

Statement of Problem

the first step in the scientific method and should provide clearly a basis an rationale for conducting research


Possible explanation for a set of observations or possible answer to a scientific question


what stays the same in a experiment

Experimental Control

identical to the control group, except one factor which is compared to the control group


items needed to conduct the experiment

Qualitative Observations

observations that deal with descriptions that cannot be expressed in numbers

Summary of Results

Puts into words the information contained in tables, charts and graphs


a branch of applied mathematics concerned with the collection and interpretation of quantitative data

Experimental Errors

measurement uncertainties and other errors that occur in experiments

Statement of Problem

Cannot be a yes or no question, the independent and dependent variable have to be included, the problem has to clearly be able to be tested, and the response is written clearly, and specifically


Has to predict a trend, has to take a stand to one side of prediction, has to include both the independent and dependent variable, has to have a rationale


All materials used are listed,no more no less, the materials are separate from the procedure


Is logically sequenced, well organized, enough information for the experiment to be repeated, diagram should be included, the trials should be stated

Qualatative Observations

Observations about results and the procedure are given, have to be from throughout the experiment,cannot relate directly to the dependent variable

Quantitative Data (Data Table)

All the raw data given, all data has units, most important information is included, the table is labled correctly, example calculations are given


The type of graph is good for the experiment, the graph is titled, the graph is labeled correctly(axes/series), units are included, the correct scale is used


The average, median, mode, range, and line of best fit are included, measure of central tendency, measure of variation, regression analysis, etc.

Analysis and Interpretation of Data

All data is discussed about and interpreted, any unusual points are discussed, trends are explained, and enough details given to understand data

Possible Experimental Errors

The possible reasons for errors are given, valid information about how the data was taken is included, the effect that the errors had on the data is discussed


Hypothesis is evaluated based on the data, the hypothesis is re-stated, the reason to why the hypothesis is rejected or accepted is included, all statements are supported by the data

Applications and Reccomendations for Further Use

Suggestions for that specific experiment, for other ways to look at the hypothesis, for future experiments are given; practical apllications of the experiment are also given


The number that, in a set of data, is either very high or very low and is no where close to the other numbers/points in the data


The avergae of al the numbers ina set of data


The middle number in a set of data


The difference between the lowest and highest number/point in a set of data


The number/point repeated most in the set of data(more than one can exist)


The vector direction that tells how much displacement there is in a certain amount of time( velocity=displacement/change in time)


The amount of a matter in something/object, the amount of inertia it has shown using a number


A measured distance or dimension(merriam--webster) or how long something is from end to end(chalk.richmond.edu)


The force of gravity on an object(weight=mass*gravity)


The ratio between Mass and volume or how tightly packed an object/substance is


The measure of how many cubes, or in general how much of something can fit in an object

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