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Activity 01: Basics research

Blue Flowers and scientific work

Objective: Handling scientific methods and terms.
Learning outcomes: The students will be able to name the criteria for scientific work and will be able to analyse experiments and methods for their use in science according to these criteria.
Previous knowledge: Basics of research (conducting scientific observations and formulating hypothesis)
Duration: 45 min
Materials / Conditions: Internet access
Methods / Techniques: text-work, creative thinking, independent research, team- or group-work possible
Learning subject: Biodiversity / Module 3: Collection, processing and analysis of environmental data / Level: Expert Learning

In an experiment, a white flower is placed in a glass with water and ink for a few minutes or hours. After a while the petals and the stem take on the colour blue. This is an easy experiment to display the transportation of water within a plant. There are many possible sources of error in an experiment or in test series, which have to be eliminated and taken into consideration.

1. Research the internet for the main quality criteria of scientific research and note down the information in bullet-points.

2. Apply the criteria to the experiment from the introduction. To what extent are the criteria met?

3. Name further sources of error or factors, that could influence the experiment.

Internet access

Possible results / Results:
Objectivity: independent from outside influences?
Reliability: no measurement errors?
Validity: suitable to measure a desired attribute?

Objectivity: is met when the framework of the experiment is specified.
Reliability: as soon as the objectivity of the experiment is achieved, it can also be reliable.
Validity: you get a valid answer to the question about the local water distribution.

Water quality
Ink quality
Condition or state of the flower
Time of day
Lighting conditions
Duration of the experiment

Related activities:

Author: Chantal Boba and Melanie Twardawa
Aus dem Deutschen übersetzt von Tim Hutchings

en/learning/courses/subjects/s01/m03/expert-learning/a01.txt · Last modified: 2015/09/18 10:20 by sschoeffer