Chapter 1 Notes Process of Science
Chapter 1 Notes Process of Science BIOL 04102-03
Northwest Missouri State University
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Sarah Morse on Thursday October 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to BIOL 04102-03 at Northwest Missouri State University taught by Dr. Dieringer in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 67 views. For similar materials see General Biology in Biology at Northwest Missouri State University.
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Date Created: 10/06/16
CHAPTER 1: JAVA REPORT IS THERE CANCER IN THE CUP? I. 1981 it was reported that drinking 2 cups of coffee a day doubled a person’s risk of pancreatic cancer. a. Brian MacMahon, Harvard b. 5 years later, 2nd study discovered no link. II. 30 years later, coffee may actually help prevent certain conditions. a. Parkinson, diabetes, cancer, tooth decay. III. Addiction to caffeine a. ER reporting more caffeine related admissions. b. Poison control centers receiving caffeine overdoses. INFOGRAPHIC 1.1 SCIENCE IS A PROCESS I. Science is a way of knowing, a method of seeking answers to questions on the basis of observation and experiment. a. The process of using observations and experiments to draw conclusions based on evidence. b. With improved technology, researchers may uncover better data. II. Anecdotal evidence. a. An informal observation that has not been systematically tested. b. Personal observation of poll. c. Testing coffee’s energizing effects by drinking it. d. May lead to questions: i. Does coffee improve mental performance? ii. Will it help me study or do better on a test? e. You can research using… i. Online databases, journal articles, university libraries, scientific journals. ii. All of the above have been subject to peer review. 1. A process in which independent scientific experts read scientific studies before they are published to ensure that the authors have appropriately designed and interpreted the study. III. Coffee contains caffeine. a. Caffeine is a chemical known to stimulate the brain. i. Regions controlling sleep, mood, memory, and concentration. INFOGRAPHIC 1.2 NARROWING DOWN THE POSSIBILITIES IV. You could now formulate a specific hypothesis about how coffee affects mental performance. a. A tentative explanation for a scientific observation or question. b. One hypothesis about coffee might be that consuming the caffeine in coffee improves memory. c. Not all possible explanations will be scientific hypotheses. It must be… i. Testable. 1. If it can be supported or rejected by carefully designed experiment or observational studies. ii. Falsifiable. 1. Can be ruled out by data that show that the hypothesis does not explain the observation. d. Hypotheses that depend on supernatural or mystical explanations fall outside. i. Pseudoscience, astrology. V. One way to test a hypothesis is to design a controlled experiment. a. A carefully designed test, the results of which will either support or rule out a hypothesis. b. 2002, Lee Ryan, Arizona University i. Measured effects of coffee drinking ii. Memory optimal in AM, more alert iii. 40 men and women over 65 iv. 2 groups: 1. Caffeine: Experimental group o The group in an experiment that experiences the experimental intervention or manipulation. 2. Decaf: Control group o The group in an experiment that experiences no experimental intervention or manipulation. v. Control group received a placebo 1. Fake treatment given to control groups to mimic experience of experimental group. vi. Independent variable. 1. The variable or factor, being deliberately changed in the experiment group. vii.Dependent variable. 1. The measured result of an experiment, analyzed in both the experiment and control groups. INFOGRAPHIC 1.3 ANATOMY OF AN EXPERIMENT 2 SIZE MATTERS I. One thing that can strengthen our confidence in the results of a scientific study is sample size. a. The number of experiment subjects or the number of times an experiment is repeated. b. In human studies, sample size is the number of participants. II. The larger the sample size, the more likely the results will have statistical significance. a. A measure of confidence that the results obtained are real and not due to chance. INFOGRAPHIC 1.4 SAMPLE SIZE MATTERS III. The highest point of scientific knowledge is scientific theory. a. An explanation of the natural world that is supported by large body of evidence and has never been disproved. INFOGRAPHIC 1.5 EVERYDAY THEORY VS SCIENTIFIC THEORY 3 THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON CAFFEINE I. Caffeine is a stimulant. a. Same class of psychoactive drugs as cocaine, amphetamines, and heroin. b. Boosts memory, mental performance, and physical performance. II. Caffeine counteracts adenosine. a. Natural sleeping pill i. Its concentration increases while awake and promotes drowsiness. b. Caffeine blocks this III. Consumption of caffeine has skyrocketed. a. Can cause anxiety, jitters, heart palpitations, trouble sleeping, dehydration. INFOGRAPHIC 1.6 SIDE EFFECTS OF CAFFEINE IV. Caffeine is addictive. a. Withdrawal i. Cranky, headaches b. Some researchers contend that coffee’s mind-boosting effects are an indirect result of the cycle of dependency. 4 FINDING PATTERNS I. To make careful observations or comparisons of phenomena that exist in nature, generating data that can then be analyzed systematically. a. This the approach taken by scientists who study epidemiology. i. The study of patterns of disease in populations. ii. Including risk factors. b. An epidemiologist who wanted to learn about the relationship between cigarette smoking and lung cancer… i. Could compare the rates of lung cancer in smokers vs. nonsmokers. ii. But an experiment in which participants were asked to smoke cigarettes and were observed to see whether or not they developed cancer would be highly unethical. II. Advantages of epidemiological studies a. Can be relatively inexpensive to conduct b. Can study factors considered harmful c. Power of numbers and time III. Correlation. a. A consistent relationship between two variables b. Correlation is not causation INFOGRAPHIC 1.7 CORRELATION DOES NOT EQUAL CAUSATION. IV. Randomized clinical trial a. A controlled medical experiment in which subjects are randomly chosen to receive either an experimental treatment or a standard treatment. 5
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