Charles F Jackels
Overview of the scientific method, emphasizing the development of testable hypotheses, scientific writing and analysis.
Science Methods and Practice. This class is a general introduction to the practice of science, with a particular emphasis on environmental science. This course provides STE students with an overview of the scientific method and process, particularly within the context of observation-driven investigations. We will examine the steps of crafting scientific questions and hypotheses, research design, experimentation and data collection, data analysis, interpretation and presentation. The course will include an introduction to the tools and methods used in science writing, the presentation and statistical analysis of scientific data, and searching and review of the scientific literature.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Lecture, small group work, and class discussion.
This course is designed as a required option core for STE students, not as an STE breadth course for general IAS students. It is expected that the students in this course will have backgrounds that include high school or college algebra and college courses in natural science. Students should be comfortable with algebra, probability, and presentation of quantitative information in graphical and tabular forms.
Class assignments and grading
Problem solving, library research papers and individual or group projects. Limited field work outside of class may be required on one or two occasions.
Exams, written papers, oral and written project reports, class participation and presentation.