[Chapter 1 Objectives]

BHS -> Mr. Stanbrough -> Physics -> About Science -> this page

Whether the experiment is a simple ten-minute class activity, or a multi-million-dollar, multi-year program involving a large team of physicists, engineers, and technicians, all experiments have a purpose, and the purpose of an experiment is to answer some question about nature.

To answer the question posed by the experiment, a physicist must set up a situation (apparatus) and collect data (make observations). It is always important that an experiment's equipment and procedures are carefully documented, so that its results are reproducible - scientific observations must be repeatable.

Once the data (observations) are taken, physicists then process and summarize this data in order to draw some conclusions (answer the original question, if possible).  


last update May 28, 2008 by JL Stanbrough