The scientific method is a process which is used to test a research question of interest. This process is dependent on a simple question or idea which is inquiring about a specific phenomenon. In the end, the goal with all research is to produce a publication.
Generally, the scientific method follows this basic format:
- There needs to be an observation of a specific phenomenon.
- A question regarding the phenomenon observed is formulated.
- A hypothesis, which is both testable and falsifiable, is prepared. This hypothesis is based off of the combination of a researcher’s general ideas, thoughts and predictions. As well, information is gathered from relevant studies which have been published in the literature.
- Test the hypothesis through observations and tests. If the hypothesis is rejected, you can revise your previous hypothesis and predictions, so that you can conduct the experiment again.
- Make interpretations and conclusions based off of the data. This will either lead to the support of your hypothesis or disproval.
- Publish your research (every scientist’s objective).
The above steps are representative of one model which can be implemented when using the scientific method to test an observable phenomenon. Generally, most research follows this format and includes all of the elements mentioned, such as hypotheses and conclusions. Through the use of the scientific method, questions regarding the natural world can be investigated.