Scientific Inquiry


- You ask a general question about a topic that you are interested in investigating

- You notice something and wonder what causes the phenomenon

“I wonder why some things fall faster than others, even if they are the same weight?”


- You research what other scientists have learned about the subject

- You see what other hypotheses have been proven

“ Newton’s Law of gravity helps explain why two items should fall at the same rate”

“ The air we have is considered a fluid, does that factor anything out?”


- Based upon your research, you take a guess as to why the phenomenon occurs

- You base your ideas on how you understand the two concepts

“ If air is a fluid and fluids affect the flow around an object does that mean when two objects fall it depends also on their shape?”


- You design a method to test your hypothesis to see if it is correct

- Your test is designed to minimize other factors and to focus only on your phenomenon that you are testing

“ I will create two different shapes but both will weigh equally the same. I will drop both at the same height and measure the time it takes for it to fall”

Analyze Data

- You examine the results of your test and see if it matches the hypothesis that you have made about the phenomenon

“ I have measured all the fall times and I plot them in a graph to compare and analyze”


- You bring together all your results, your research and your hypothesis into a final concluding statement

- If it does not prove your hypothesis, you go back to your research stage

“I have concluded that shape does matter for rates of falling and that the data supports this idea”