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The Scientific Method

The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning. The Oxford English Dictionary defines the scientific method as: "a method or procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses."

There is an old saying "Seek and yee shall find!" The scientist says "Test and yee shall know!"

Incidentally Western Civilization has to thank Islamic Civilization for the Scientific Method. They invented this process back when Western "Civilization" was living in mud huts in Europe. Without all the knowledge that Western Christians stole from the Middle Eastern Islamic Cultures we'd probably still be living in those mud huts. The Arab physicist Ibn al-Haytham (Alhazen) first used the scientific method in optics experiments in 1021, about 600 years before Western thinkers accepted the method. Why? Because religion got in the way.

Scientific Method - Link to Wikipedia Article


This is a very simple process and anyone can use it. You don't have to be a scientist. Let's say you have something you want to know, want to know if something will work to solve a problem for you, or just have a question.

  1. You do a little looking up on the Internet for background (maybe the answer is already there).
  2. You come up with what you think might be a solution or an answer.
  3. You test your idea and see if it works.
  4. If it does work, Whoopee!
  5. If it does not work go back, just change one thing, and try again.
  6. Repeat the process until you have success.

What could be simpler!

Don't be fooled into thinking that science needs to be complicated and that you need a college education to do it. You don't. You just need an Open Mind and a little persistence and determination. They work every time.

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Sioux Falls Scientists Present
The Scientific Method