You’ve got a problem that you want to have solved. The purpose step in the scientific method is just a restatement of what you want accomplished. What do you want to find out? What is your goal? You should write just one sentence for your purpose. You’ll see what I mean in the upcoming example.Hypothesis:
How do you think you can solve the problem? The hypothesis step is always written in the form “If ___________, then ___________. The blank after the “if” is called the independent variable. The independent variable is just whatever you are going to do to solve the problem. The blank after “then” is the dependent variable. The dependent variable is what you think will happen when you do whatever the independent variable is. For example, if your hypothesis is that “If I take an aspirin, my headache will go away,” your independent variable is “taking an aspirin” (this is what you do) and your dependent variable is “the headache will go away” (what happens as a result of your having done something).Materials:
What do you need to have in order to see if your hypothesis is true? This part of the scientific method is a list of everything you need to do the experiment. Leave nothing out!
Procedure: What are you going to do during this experiment. You should list everything that you are going to do in this section. Even if it seems obvious, write it down. A good rule of thumb: If a six-year-old child can understand what you’ve written, then you’ve written it well. If they can’t, then you need to go into more detail!Results:
When you did the experiment, what happened? What did you see, hear, smell, etc? You should give a complete accounting of all data that you take (sometimes this is referred to as the “Data” section). There’s an old saying among chemists: “If you didn’t write it down, then it didn’t happen.” Make sure you write everything down!Conclusion:
What do the results mean? Was your hypothesis correct? This section should be only one sentence long. For example, if you proved the hypothesis that “If I take an aspirin, my headache will go away,” then the conclusion should be “I took an aspirin, and my headache went away.” Don’t make this any longer than it has to be!