What is Science?
Aug 26, 2009
My definition: (noun) a logical pattern in nature. Categories include:
Physics - the study of the very nature of the universe
Biology - the study of living organisms
Social - the study of the patterns of society and the people in it
Chemistry - the study of the relations matter has with itself (closely tied with physics)
Geology - the study of the process by which the earth revolves
Scientific knowledge is based off of observations on patterns of known facts. From this data, a logical hypothesis is formed where one can assume a greater truth that governs the observed patterns. An assumed truth is called a theory.
All scientists go about their understandings of their fields by utilizing the Scientific Method/Process. The first step in this process is to observe objects and/or events. In the pursuit of knowledge, one must ask why things are the way they have been observed. A hypothesis, which is an explanation for a potential truth, is formed and tested. The hypothesis is either supported or unsupported, and if not then it is dismissed as invalid. If supported, the hypothesis is valid, but never sound. In science, there is always a factor of uncertainty.
Put simply, the Scientific Method is logic. They share the same elements:
Observe - Question - Hypothesize - Test, Conclude
These were the first notes I took in school this year. It looks like an essay, which it should. Notes should be easy to real and understand, and they must also provoke one's mind as they are written.
I believe that there is a difference between memorizing and knowing. You can memorize information on the invasion of Normandy, but the only people who know the battle are those who where there. It was their battle. Similarly, we do not know what we have learned from the book because the information is part of the book's thought process. To make the knowledge truly ours, we must incorporate it into our own thought processes.
This is the point to essays, and why I think that notes should be written as if they were an essay. An essay is a literary representation of a cogitation. When you put them down, they have voice and direction. The original writing of your notes should look very much like a first draft, just bland facts. Facts, however, are not thoughts. They do not represent intelligence. You often do not think while writing down the first words, either.
After class, we should reminisce on what we learned. We can only be taught if we are willing to teach ourselves. Once we have looked back, thought about what we have learned, and then write it down, we are doing just that. We don't think about the class experience, just the data. It's there. Don't re-experience the class, experience knowledge.
Write it all down. Make sure that your thoughts are immortalized. Our notes must not just contain facts, but logic and also your opinions (a.k.a., conclusions). From this, we might even teach ourselves something you didn't learn in class. The notes above weren't just about an in-class experience, it was also about expressing my own opinions.
Furthermore, doing this provides an good alternate source of study, which is organized according to your desires. It is especially helpful if a teacher allows students to study notes before or during a quiz.
On the long run, one can look at their notes once the school-year is over and through with, and then both think and feel for the work they did. It's a journal, not just a piece of trash that can be tossed. It contains dates and bits and pieces of you. It represents all that you achieved in the course of a year, and it represents you as much as the subject.
Don't take notes lightly. Consider them one of the three most important things for class, alongside assignments and tests. Even though one usually doesn't get any credit for them, they are just as important. All that we learn goes into their making, and they help us learn more. Write them well.
Know, don't memorize. Experience knowledge.