We need to understand the method used by scientists. This is especially important for two reasons:
- Much science is in the news, yet many times reporters do not have scientific knowledge
- To help separate the psuedoscience from real science
Science begins with Observation. Observing what is around us is the starting point for science. Making measurements is an important part of observation.
Hypotheses are the cornerstone of the scientific method. A hypothesis is a statement which attempts to explain our observations. The key however to a scientific hypothesis is that it can and must be tested.
If many experiments support an hypothesis, then it becomes a Scientific Theory. Note that if further studies show a theory to be invalid, then a new theory is proposed. Also note that in popular media that the terms theory and hypothesis are often used incorrectly.