Student Research Project Science

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Student Research Project Science
Name: ______________________________
Class: _______________________________
Teacher: ____________________________
Brief Description of Project:
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YEAR 10
Student Research Project Science
Due dates:
Part 1: _______
Part 2: _______
The work of a scientist involves planning and carrying out investigations
communicating ideas and findings, and seeking constructive evaluation by peers. The
student research project provides opportunities for students to engage in similar
processes during the course of their learning.
The syllabus requires that:
All students will undertake at least one research project during stage 5 (years 9
and 10).
This research project will be conducted over at least four weeks.
This project will involve "hands on" practical investigation, and will be an
individual task.
Students should chose investigations related to one of the topics they have studied or
to an area of interest. They should be encouraged to address problems relevant to their
immediate environment and use readily available materials to undertake their
investigation.
Class time may be allocated to assist students in planning their investigations,
carrying out research, clarifying their questions, identifying the independent and
dependent variables, and reporting results. The actual investigation will be completed
in the students own time.
Student projects will be used to assess the achievements of course outcomes
as part of the school based assessment program.
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FIRST STEP: Choose a topic
Pick something you are interested in.
Look in library books/magazines for ideas.
Ask for help from your teachers.
Think carefully to decide if your idea is feasible: can it be investigated
experimentally; can you get the materials you need; have you got time to
finish it?
Your topic must not involve explosion, cruelty, 240 Volts or damage the
environment.
Examples:
Investigate whether the shape of a ball affects how far it can be kicked.
Investigate whether temperature affects how long or how brightly glow sticks glow.
Investigate whether the size of soil particles affects how well they retain water.
Investigate whether the size of a seed affects how large a plant grows.
Investigate whether plants respond to all colours of light in the same way.
Investigate whether a particular detergent works equally in all temperatures.
Investigate whether candles of different colours burn at the same rate.
Investigate whether different types of battery lose power at the same rate.
Does the temperature of water make any difference to whether tea leaves float?
Does the amount of detergent in water affect the size of bubbles that are blown?
Investigate whether the presence of salt in water affects how well a soap washes.
Do different materials used for sponges hold the same amount of water?
What colour flowers do bees prefer?
How can you make water evaporate more quickly?
Do potatoes cook more quickly if you put a lid on the pot?
Do all your fingernails grow at the same rate? Do toe nails or fingernails grow faster?
Are white cars cooler on hot days than dark cars?
Is there a way of stopping a peeled banana going brown?
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PART 1: YOUR PLAN
AIM
State the purpose of your investigation. That is, what you are trying to find out.
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HYPOTHESIS
Using the knowledge that you already have and what you have researched about the
topic, make a guess about what you will find out by doing the investigation.
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MATERIALS
List the materials and equipment (including amounts) that you have used in
performing your experiment.
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RISK ASSESSMENT
Identify any hazards with the materials you may be using. What special precautions
have you taken?
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VARIABLES
There are three categories of variables: independent, dependent and controlled.
Example experiment: To determine which battery lasts longest using a torch.
VARIABLE
EXPLANATION
EXAMPLE
Independent
What is varied during the experiment by Brands of batteries.
the investigator. (ie. what you are testing.)
Dependent
What is measured by the investigator. (ie. How long the globe remains
what will be affected during the
on.
experiment.)
Controlled
The variables held constant. Since the
Battery size (D, C, AA,
investigator wants to study the effect of AAA), type of torch,
one particular independent variable, the temperature.
possibility that other factors affecting the
outcome must be eliminated. (ie.
everything that must be kept the same)
In your investigation, what are the variables?
Independent:
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Dependent:
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Controlled:
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BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Briefly Describe any previous findings about your chosen topic and any relevant
theory which will help the readers understand the topic.
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Bibliography
Make a list of websites, books, other printed materials, audiovisual or internet sites
you have referred to. Arrange the sources in alphabetical order. List the people and
organisations that gave you help or advice. For each source, list the following
information in the order shown:
Author(s) (if known), Title of book or article (underlined), Publisher or name of
journal/magazine, Place of publication (if given), Date of publication, Chapter or
pages used.
Examples:
www.boardofstudies.nsw.gov.au
World Book Encyclopaedia, 1991, Volume 4, pp 234-236.
Breidahl, H. Australia's Southern Shores, Lothian, Melbourne 1997, Chapter 2.
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METHOD
The method description must be detailed enough to allow someone else to repeat the
experiment(s). Use step-by-step (procedure text type) outline to male your method
easier to follow. Include labelled diagrams or photographs of your equipment.
Remember to use past tense, third person. Do not use "I", "we", "them", "us" etc. Ask
your Science teacher how it should be done if you are not sure.
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Space for diagram(s)
This is the end of Part 1.
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The log book (to be handed in with Part 2).
A log book is a record of the steps involved in completing a Student Research Project.
The log book can be an exercise book especially designated for your project. Your log
book doesn’t have to be typed. It is to be used as a record of how you went about
completing your task and what you were thinking. It should include relevant diagrams,
sketches, photos and anything else to show your planning and progress through your
project. Its purpose is to record what actually happened through your project. It will also
record your thinking and decisions if unexpected things occur. The log book should be
used to assist you in the writing up of your final report. Make sure you keep original data
and maintain accurate records.
Below is a sample entry from a log book. Remember to include details of phone calls
made, letters sent, discussions with teachers, etc.
From: http://www.stansw.asn.au/ys/SRP2001.pdf
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LOGBOOK
DATE
ENTRY
DETAILS
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PART 2: YOUR EXPERIMENT
RESULTS:
Observations and measurements (data) are presented in this section. Wherever
possible, present data in table form so that it is easy to read. Graphs can be attached to
help you and the reader interpret data. Each table or graph should have a title. Make
sure you select the most appropriate type of graph (pie, line, histogram etc.)
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DISCUSSION
Discuss your results here. Explain how your results might be useful. Any weaknesses
in your design or difficulties in measuring could be outlined here. Explain how you
could have improved your experiments. What further experiments are suggested by
your results?
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CONCLUSION
This is a brief statement of what you found out and may link with the final paragraph
of your discussion. It is a good idea to read your "AIM' again before you write your
conclusion. Your conclusion should state whether your hypothesis was supported.
Don't be disappointed if it is not, it is all part of the scientific method.
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Marking Criteria
Name : _________________________________
Marks Allocated Outcome
10
10
10
17
8
5
Marks Awarded
1. Plan
a. A full assessment of possible risks or why there is none.(1)
b. A coherent statement of the aim of the experiment.(1)
c. Hypothesis proposed and correctly stated.(2)
d. A full list of all the equipment required.(2)
e. States variables measured.(independent, dependent, at least 2 controlled variables (4)
2. Gathers Information
a. A fully detailed and sequential account of the steps.(2)
b. Develops a plan and study from an original question.(2)
c. Uses appropriate device and methodology.(2)
d. Includes an experimental control or explains why one is not necessary (2)
e. Repeats trials and measurements.(2)
3. Uses Data to Form Explanations
a. Makes observations to show intended relationship.(2)
b. Recounts what happened.(2)
c. Explains patterns or trends in the data.(2)
d. Identifies limitations of the methods (or why there are none/evaluates results.(2)
e. Suggests improvements to the study and or further experiments.(2)
4. Presents Information Appropriately
a. Uses correct units throughout results in tables and graphs. (2)
b. Presents a list of all results.(2)
c. Arranges results into a table with titles(2)
d. Draws a graph using the results.
Both variables included on correct axes. (2)
Correct choice of graph.(2)
Correct plotting of graph.(2)
e. Log book shows attempt to document the steps taken.(4)
f. Photographs, video or detailed diagrams included. (1)
5. Draws Appropriate Conclusions
a. States whether hypothesis is supported.(2)
b. States a conclusion drawn from the results.(2)
c. Suggests explanations or causes for the results & their usefulness (2)
d. Related results to information gathered from secondary sources.(2)
6. Accesses Secondary Sources
a. Shows evidence of wider reading in the material submitted.(2)
b. Includes a bibliography.(3)
60
TOTAL
Teachers use only
Outcome
Section
Total
Identifies a problem and independently produces an appropriate investigation plan
1 &2
20
Identifies and specifies variables in a controlled experiment
1e
4
Expresses experimental data appropriately
4
17
Uses critical thinking skills in evaluating experimental data and drawing conclusions.
3&5
18
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Marks

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