Archive for the ‘Dimensions of Scientific Reasoning’ Category

Proportions and Ratios

In mathematics and physics, proportionality is a mathematical relation between two quantities. There are two different views of this “mathematical relation.” One is based on ratios, and the other is based on functions.

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Probability

Probability is a way of expressing knowledge or belief that an event will occur or has occurred.

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Basic Logical Reasoning

Deductive logic related to the consistency of statements and beliefs and the validity of arguments.

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Inductive Reasoning

Inductive reasoning is used when generating hypotheses, formulating theories, and discovering relationships.  It is essential for scientific discovery. 

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Hypothetical-Deductive Reasoning

Hypothetical-deductive method is a very important method for testing theories or hypotheses and is one of the most basic methods common to all scientific disciplines.

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Hidden Variables

Non-given variables and unobservable relationships between variables are categorized as hidden variables.  Identifying hidden variables is an important step in forming and testing a hypothesis.

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Control of Variables

Control of variables strategy refers to the method used when experimenting with a system that has many variables.  To avoid confounded experiments, all variables but those under consideration must be controlled.

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Correlational Reasoning

In a multi-variable scientific inquiry process, correlation is used to describe the degree of dependence between two variables.

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Conditional Probability

Conditional probability is a difficult topic for students to master. Often counter-intuitive, its central laws are composed of abstract terms and complex equations that do not immediately mesh with subjective intuitions of experience.

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Causal Reasoning

Causal reasoning relates to establishing the presence of causal relationships among events.  When causal relationships exist, there is good reason to believe that events of one type (the causes) are systematically related to events of another type (the effects).

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