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Earth Science Introduction

Prentice Hall Earth Science - Science Explorer Vocabulary

scienceA way of learning about the natural world and the knowledge gained through that process
scientific inquiryThe diverse ways in which scientists explore problems and seek to answer questions about the natural world
observationUsing all five senses to gather information
inferenceAn interpretation based on observation and prior knowledge
hypothesisA possible explanation for a set of observations or an answer to a scientific question
controlled experimentAn experiment in which all factors except one are kept constant
variableAny factor that can change in an experiment
manipulated variableThe one factor that a scientist changes during an experiment; also called the independent variable
responding variableThe factor that changes as a result of changes to the manipulated varaiable in an experiment; also called the dependent variable
dateThe facts, figures and other evidence gained through observation
scientific theoryA well-tested concept that explains a wide range of observations
Earth scienceThe science that focuses on planet Earth and its place in the universe
geologistsA scientist who studies the forces that make and shape planet Earth
oceanographersA scientist who studies Earth's oceans
meteorologistsScientists who study the causes of weather and try to predict it
astronomersScientists who study the universe
environmental scientistsA scientist who studies the effects of human activities on Earth's land, air, water, and living things and also tries to solve problems relating to the use of resources


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