Exam 1 Study Guide
• Science: A method for learning about the natural world
1. Ask a question—Who? What? When? Where? Why? How? 2. Do background research—Find out more information about your question
3. Construct a hypothesis—If I do [this], then [this] will happen 4. Experiment—Test your hypothesis
5. Analyze your data—Is your experiment working? If not, try a new experiment
6. Draw conclusions—Did your results align with your hypothesis? If not, restart from there.
• Hypothesis: A proposed explanation for a specific problem
• Prediction: What we would expect to see if a hypothesis was true or false If you want to learn more check out What are the 3 domains of life?
• Data: Information gathered by observations
• Evidence: Test results and/or observations to help prove or disprove an idea
• Scientific Theory: A widely accepted explanation for why things work they way they do
• Uniformitarianism: The physical processes that function today have done the same things in the past
- Scientists communicate their findings through publications such as journals, books, and articles, and through discussions such as debates and conferences
- Throughout the scientific method, peer review is used to help the researcher(s) along with their experiments, data, and explorations
If you want to learn more check out What are the main sociological theories?
- A scientist is anyone who uses the scientific method almost every day; they work for universities, industries, or the government; their funding comes from many places that ultimately get money from you as a tax payer and consumer
- Many people misunderstand scientific results due to confirmation bias, anecdotal “evidence”, common sense, and causation vs. correlation
- Geology is the scientific study of the Earth or other planetary body; geologists study every aspect of earth and other planetary bodies
- Geology is important because everything that we used is either grown or mined We also discuss several other topics like What is the chemical substance that transmits from neuron to another?
- Some of the major geologic resources of Alabama are iron ore, coal, and limestone deposits
- The Universe was formed 13.7 Ga by the Big Bang
- The Earth was formed 4.54 Ga by colliding with meteorites and asteroids
- The Moon was formed 4.53 Ga when the Earth was hit by a planetesimal and blew back apart If you want to learn more check out Who avoided carved decoration or design?
- The Big Bang Theory explains how the Universe was formed by a giant explosion; three major pieces of evidence for this: expansion of the Universe, abundance of light elements, and cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR)
- The three layers of the Earth are the crust, mantle, and core - The crust layer is very rocky; we know this because we live on it If you want to learn more check out What is balanced reciprocity?
- The mantle layer is divided into the upper and lower mantles; it is a soft solid; we know this because of seismic waves - The core layer is divided into the outer and inner cores; the core is iron-rich; we know this due to seismic waves, density, and meteorite compositionWe also discuss several other topics like What is equity?
- A tectonic plate is a piece of lithosphere; they are always moving
- There are six pieces of evidence that show us the continents moved in the past: shape of continents, Paleozoic glacier deposits, ancient climate belts, distribution of fossils, distribution of ancient rocks, and paleomagnetism
- The evidence for sea-floor spreading is the age of the sea floor - At a divergent boundary, the plates move away from each other; mid-ocean ridges and continental drift occur - At a convergent boundary, the plates move towards each other (to help you remember, they CONVERGE); this causes mountain ranges (collision) and deep ocean trenches (subduction)
- At a transform boundary, two plates slide past one another - Ridge push and slab pull cause plates to move
- It is important to know about plate tectonic because it tells us about the history and even the future of the Earth
- A hot spot is a place not on a plate boundary where mantle comes up through the crust; usually defined by a chain of dead volcanoes and one active volcano
- Atoms are the smallest units of an element; composed of protons (positive charge), neutrons (neutral charge) and electrons (negative charge)
- Atoms are important because they make up elements which makes up all matter
- Isotopes are the atomic weight of an element; there are two types of isotopes: stable and radioactive (unstable) - Three types of chemical bonds: Covalent Bonds (atoms share electrons), Ionic Bonds (atoms transfer electrons), and Metallic Bonds (atoms share a sea of electrons)
- Minerals form from the solidification of a melt, precipitation of a solution, solid state diffusion, biomineralization, or fumarolic mineralization
- Eight ways to identify a mineral: color (visible color), streak (color in powdered form), luster (the way minerals scatter light), hardness (determines the strength of chemical bonds), specific gravity (measures density), crystal form or habit (shape of mineral if left to grow uninterrupted), fracture and cleavage (how a mineral breaks), and special properties (such as magnetism, taste, etc.)
- Color is the least reliable
- The most common group of minerals is silicates; subdivisions are mafic (heavier elements) and felsic (lighter elements) - Minerals are important because we use them every day