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determine which of the following observations are testable. for those that are...

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user9173566 | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 15, 2013 at 5:24 PM via web

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determine which of the following observations are testable. for those that are testable.

 

1. when a plant is placed on a window sill, it grows faster than when it is placed on a coffee table in the middle of the living room.

2. the teller at the bank with brown hair/ brown eyes/ is taller than the other tellers.

3. I caught four fish at the seven 0'clock in the morning but didn't catch any at noon.

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pacorz | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted January 15, 2013 at 7:11 PM (Answer #1)

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[eNotes policy limits questions asked and answers given.]

Generally an observation is not testable by itself; it's just an observation. However observations can lead one to create a hypothesis, which is testable. The hypothesis is essentially a prediction which can be used to guide an experiment to test the validity of the hypothesis.

In your question, number 1 is testable; you would set up 2 plants of the same size and type in similar containers, using the same soil. Place one pot on a windowsill and one on the coffee table. Water both the same and track their growth. Differences in the growth will be attributable to the location, since al the other factors are the same.

Question 2 is testable simply by taking measurements and recording hair and eye color for the bank tellers.

Question 3 is not testable as is; however if you were to say that you will catch more fish in the morning than at noon, you could test that by going fishing for several days (same spot, same bait/lure), and recording how many fish were caught at the different times.

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