Scientific Thinking Vocabulary

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variable
a factor that could change during an experiment, it can have more than one value
independent variable
the factor that is manipulated (changed) by the investigator/scientist to observe how it affects a dependent variable
dependent variable
the factor that an investigator/scientist observes or measures during an experiment, the result of that variable that is manipulated
control
the variable or variables that cannot be changed during an experiment, the constants
testable question
a question that requires an experiment to answer it, must have an independent and dependent variable
observation
the skill of using one or more of your senses to collect information and take note of what occurs in scientific events
qualitative observation
an observation that describes an object using words and categories (qualities)
quantitative observation
an observation that uses numbers and measurements (quantities)
inference
a logical explanation of an observation based on evidence or prior experience
prediction
what might happen in the future or next in sequence, based on your observations and inferences
hypothesis
a possible explanation for an observation that can be tested by an experiment or investigation
procedure
a step by step explanation of how to accomplish a task
scientific method
an inquiry process using skills and tools to answer or test ideas about the natural world
data
evidence, facts, and information from your investigation that can be calculated or made into a graph or model