Independent Climate Investigation #1 – Designing a Scientific Experiment.
A video describing procedures and information can be found here:
This weeks Independent Climate Investigation delves deeper into the Scientific Method, which was covered in class on Wednesday. Good science depends not just on following each of the steps in the Scientific Method, but also by effective collaboration and giving good feedback to one another… hence, this activity is being done in groups, but will actually be graded on individual completion (rather than as a group… so if someone slacks off in your group, it doesn’t hurt your grade). For this activity, you are going to do two things:
Design a scientific experiment (you don’t need to carry out the experiment) that seeks to solve the following question: “Is it usually cooler near the ocean than it is inland.” In a post to your group’s discussion board, explain your experiment, making sure to include the following 5 things (1 point each, graded on if you satisfactorily described the component):
1. A hypothesis, and why that is your hypothesis.
2. What do you plan to do for your experiment (e.g. take temperature at 12pm each day)?
3. Where do you plan to do it (and how many places do you plan to do it)?
4. How long do you plan to do it for?
5.  What kind of equipment do you plan to use? How will you place that equipment. Be specific (don’t just say “a thermometer…” explain what kind of thermometer, and why)!
A few things to consider before writing your response:
Are you running your experiment for a sufficient amount of time (meaning: doing it for just one afternoon probably isn’t enough… you want to collect a bunch of data).
Are you running your experiment in a sufficient number of places (putting one thermometer in Santa Cruz, and another in San Jose probably isn’t enough either… you’re going to want to be sure that your findings work well for other places as well).
Is the equipment you’re using sufficient for scientific study (this I plan to not be so uptight about, but holding up a glass thermometer might not be good enough… plus, your arm gets very tired).

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