Science Practice 4: The student can plan and implement data collection strategies appropriate to a particular scientific question.
Experimentation and the collection and analysis of scientific evidence
are at the heart of biology. Data can be collected from many different sources: experimental investigation, scientific observation, the findings
of others, historic reconstruction and archival records. After the student poses a question about biology, he or she is able to investigate and arrive
at answers through experimentation and reasoning. In this coupled process, the student can justify the selection of the kind of data needed to answer a question. For example, if the question is about how temperature affects enzymatic activity, the student should be able to collect data about temperature while controlling other variables, such as pH and solute concentration. To test a hypothesis about an observation, the student is able to design an experiment; identify needed controls; identify needed supplies and equipment from a given list of resources; develop or follow an experimental protocol to collect data; analyze data and draw conclusions from the results; and describe the limitations of the experiment and conclusions. In addition, the student can draw conclusions from experimental results of other scientists, e.g., the historical experiments of
Fredrick Griffith, Calvin and Krebs, Hershey and Chase, and Watson and Crick.
- 4.1 The student can justify the selection of the kind of data needed to answer a particular scientific question.
- 4.2 The student can design a plan for collecting data to answer a particular scientific question.
- 4.3 The student can collect data to answer a particular scientific question.
- 4.4 The student can evaluate sources of data to answer a particular