Science relies on logic and creativity. Science is both a body of knowledge and a way of knowing-an intellectual and social process that applies human intelligence to explaining how the world works. Scientific explanations are developed using both observations (evidence) and what people already know about the world (scientific knowledge). All scientific explanations are tentative and subject to change. Good science involves questions, observing, and inferring, experimenting, finding evidence, collecting and organizing data, drawing valid conclusions, and undergoing peer review. Understanding the scientific view of the natural world is an essential part of personal, societal, and ethical decision making. Scientific literacy involves internalizing the scientific critical attitude so that it can be applied in everyday life, particularly in relation to health, commercial, and technological claims.
Key Idea 1: The central purpose of scientific inquiry is to develop explanations of natural phenomena in a continuing and creative process.
Key Idea 2: Beyond the use of reasoning and consensus, scientific inquiry involves the testing of proposed explanations involving the use of conventional techniques and procedures and usually requiring considerable ingenuity.
Key Idea 3: The observations made while testing proposed explanations, when analyzed using conventional and invented methods, provide new insights into natural phenomena.