Do Scientists Prove Hypotheses

Do Scientists Prove Hypotheses - Suppose that mice in the...

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Do Scientists Prove Hypotheses? Suppose that a pet store owner observes that the mice in her colony grow slowly. She hypothesizes that they grow slowly because she does not give them enough food. To test this hypothesis, she uses two groups of mice. One group is given more food than they can eat while the other group receives the normal amount. Suppose that all of the mice in her experiment grow slowly. Her hypothesis that she does not give them enough food must be incorrect. She rejects her hypothesis and decides to test an alternative hypothesis. An alternative hypothesis is that the mice grow slowly because she does not give them enough water. She tests this hypothesis by giving the mice in one group more water than they can drink and giving the mice in another group the normal amount.
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Unformatted text preview: Suppose that mice in the group that received the extra water grow faster. She accepts her hypothesis that lack of water caused the poor growth. She has not proved her hypothesis. Perhaps it is not the water but instead, a mineral in the water that causes faster growth when given in higher amounts. Science advances by rejecting false hypotheses . In the above experiment, she has not proved that it was the lack of water that caused poor growth. There may be other factors involved that she does not know about. When a hypothesis is disproved it is rejected and an alternative hypothesis is accepted. However, you cannot be 100% sure that the hypothesis is false. You may reject a hypothesis that is true. Statistical techniques are used to reduce this type of error....
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