sp02u3p3 - Unit Three Single-celled Organisms Single-celled...

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Unit Three Single-celled Organisms ©Project Oceanography Spring 2002 85 Single-celled Organisms and Symbiotic Relationships Lesson Objectives: Students will be able to do the following: Describe an experimental method used by scientists Compare and contrast two studies involving the same symbiotic relationship Identify at least two technologies used in these particular studies Key Concepts: experimental design, enzyme, antibody, transmission electron microscopy, autoradiography Methods Used by Scientists Scientists study the natural world. They look for answers to questions they might have about something they have observed in nature. In scientific research, a process is used to answer these questions. This process is not always the same, but it generally contains these steps: observation, questioning, using the results of previous scientific research, developing a testable prediction, creating and carrying out an experiment, gathering results, and drawing conclusions. From observation and research scientists begin to develop a conceptual model . This is a model in your head based on connected units of information or a concept. Then it is time to make a testable prediction based on the model. These predictions are testable hypotheses that help scientists evaluate their model. Researchers then design and carry out experiments to test their hypotheses. The experimental design depends on the type of question being asked. Usually researchers try to design experiments with a control , which means that they can make comparisons between the experimental group and nonexperimental group. Sometimes experiments indicate that the scientist’s hypothesis was falsified. This means that the hypothesis could not be shown to be true in that particular instance. In this case, researchers refine their question and continue to conduct other experiments. Sometimes important scientific breakthroughs are discovered accidentally. In other cases practical applications may result from studying the natural world. These practical applications of scientific discovery are called technology . Let’s take a closer look at two specific examples of how scientists work and design research experiments.
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Unit Three Single-celled Organisms ©Project Oceanography Spring 2002 86 Research Design 1 These research designs represent the steps that two scientists used to find answers to their questions. The thinking sections give a more detailed view of the process. The Carpenter Research Team’s Experiment Observation: Some dinoflagellates have cyanobacteria living inside them. Thinking: This observation made the team curious. They began to ask questions. Broad Questions: Why would these two organisms live together? Does this relationship benefit either partner? Is it a mutualism?
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