The Scientific Inquiry Model | Print |

The Scientific Inquiry Model

The above model is the one that we use in Science.. Each step helps us organize our thoughts, observations and relevant scientiflc information leading us to new questions and ideas. The steps followed may vary somewhat in each investigation, but the circular pattern helps us to remain focused on the problem we are exploring.

The steps are as follows:

Problem Statement (Initial Inquiry)
Hypothesis (Predicting)
Experimental Design (Materials and Procedure)
Data Collection (Observations / Measurements)
Analysis / Interpretation of Data (Inferring)
Drawing Conclusions (Answering the question / problem)
Extension (Further Inquiry - pose new questions that are related to the original question that can lead to new investigations)


1. OBSERVING - Using all the senses

2. CLASSIFYING - Grouping related objects and ideas

3. QUANTIFYING - Using n~bers & measurements related to length, width, volume and ratios.

4. COMMUNICATING - Describing verbally or non-verbally, tabulating, graphing

5. INTERPRETING DATA - Explanation of an observation

6. HYPOTHESIS - A hypothesis is a possible tentative explanation for a phenomenon

7. PREDICTING - Based on observations, measurements, and relationships between observed variables.

8. DEFINING TERMS - All our interactions are vitally dependent on the precise use of tenns.

9. DEFINING AND USING VARIABLES - Identify and distinguish when using variables in an investigation which are controlled (held constant) and which are manipulated.


1. MANIPULATED VARIABLE - The measurement or condition that is regulated by the person doing the experiment.

2. RESPONDING VAJUABLE - What you measure to find the data you obtain from your experiment.

3. CONTROLLED VARIABLE - Allows you to determine if in fact there was a change. Experiments in which the experimenter keeps all factors (variables) the same except for one, are called controlled experiments.