Science means to understand the phenomena of nature experimentally.
It is an accumulated and systematized learning. Science has been defined in many ways, some definitions are given below:-The Columbia Encyclopedia defines science as:” An accumulated and systematized learning in general usage restricted to natural Phenomena, The progress of science is marked not only by an accumulation of Facts, but by the emergence of scientific method and of scientific attitudes’ . (1) ”This definition includes there of the basic principles of modern science, namely: An accumulated and systematized body of knowledge Scientific attitudes Scientific methods of inquiry. While the first point is the product of science, the second and point constitute the process of science”. (2)The following discussion provides a more detailed account of the product and process of modern science. In science, practical activities, motivate the students to enhance their knowledge and also strengthens it.To express the importance of practical science and experiments following authors are of the view:McGraw and Hill say that:” The test of hypothesis, under controlled conditions is called experiment” (3)While William J.B.
says that:”An experiment is a sequence of observation carried out under controlled conditions”. (4) Science is fundamentally a means of understanding why things happened as they do.Arther A.
Carins, Teaching Science through Discovery, pp. 3-5.Ibid, pp. 3-5McGraw Hill, Encyclopaedia, P.
143.William J. B. et al. Modern Physics, P. 35.
The accumulated facts gathered by scientists as an outgrowth of their studies of nature have resulted in a large body of verified knowledge. This knowledge has beenorganized into subject matter fields such as Biology, Geology, Astronomy, Physics and Chemistry. This organized and systematized subject matter is the product of scientific investigation.
Schools have however traditionally over emphasized the process of science. A look at the process by which the subject matter is obtained reveals the dynamic nature of scientific process, for facts become valid and cumulative only after they survive unrelenting scrutiny.In ” Teaching of Science through discovery”Arther explains the fact that:” To test hypothesis, gather data under controlled conditions, evaluate data, and formulate tentative conclusions based on their data is called experiment, 5)Man has found in science a process by which his research for answers to his unlimited questions can be approached systematically. Science as a process of inquiry stems for human urges and needs and is guided by scientific attitudes and methods. Either by intent or by accident, many people describe scientific attitudes and methods in such a way as to indicate that there is one and only one, approach to solving problem scientifically.
Case history of famous scientists reveals that there are as many scientific methods as there are scientists. We can observe the scientific way of thinking as a natural outgrowth of modern scientific attitudes.Just as the young child enjoys discovering the texture, colour, science, weight and taste of sand at the sea shore or sand box and because it intrigues him the social studies the wonders of nature because he delights in them. This dynamic and almost compulsive involvement of the child or adult investigator searching for answer provides the fuel for the vehicle of investigation. Without hunger for answers there could not be scientific inquiry. It is not always important that practical uses be found from the answers. The scientist many times is neither concerned with nor aware of the uses of his discoveries.
The sheer joy of discovery is justification enough for scientific inquiry as revealed in this statement:” Anyone who has ever worked in any science knows how much esthetic joy he has obtained that is in the actual activity of science in the process of making a discovery however humble it is, one can’t help feeling an awareness of beauty”.(6)The scientist is quick to realize that there is not one method of scientific thinking or the process of inquiry and this realization gives him a sense of humility in relation to his work and the ways in which the approaching problem solving.Arther et al.
Teaching of Science through Discovery, pp. 335-339.Murry John, Teaching Science at the Secondary State, p. 15The scientific method is nothing more than approaching problems from so many directions as possible. We observe that there is not anyone scientific method common to all science. There are definite methods of reasoning from available evidences and they are essentially the same in all the sciences.
They are:Observation (including experimentation)Analysis and Synthesis Imagination Supposition and idealization Inference (including and deduction)Comparison (including analogy) at first glance.The prepared mind is not the sole property of the scientist. Every alert and intelligent human being is not only capable of but also engages in the mental activities of the prepared mind.
Verification of these characteristics can be seen in man’s everyday problem solving. Common sense has also been referred to as the residue of science, which has been well digested.Aspects of scientific enterprise can be summarized as follows:Descriptive science or natural history, because it provides the basis for scientific inquiry and plays so prominent role in a child conventional experience.Science proper. Because of its intellectual challenge, which should be a primary goal of scientific education andTechnology because it serves so well to illustrate the practical application of scientific principles and because of its impact on modern society. (7)