AN ANALYSIS OF LOU AND LULU'S INVESTIGATION
IN TERMS OF A SCIENTIFIC METHOD
OF PROBLEM SOLVING
DESCRIPTION OF THE STEPTHE STEP IN LOU AND LULU'S INVESTIGATION
1. State the problem clearly.1. How did the boulder get onto the lawn?
2. State a hypothesis clearly.2. FIRST HYPOTHESIS:
It fell out of the sky.
3. Devise one or more predictions and state them clearly.3. If I go and look, I will find a crater associated with the boulder.
4. Make observations to acquire data relevant to the predictions; organize or 'play' with the data.4. No crater is found.
5. Evaluate the prediction in terms of the observations: draw conclusions as to how well the predictions are fulfilled.5. The prediction is not fulfilled.
6. Evaluate the hypothesis: i.e., draw a conclusion as to how strongly the hypothesis is supported or negated.6. The hypothesis is strongly negated.
7. Repeat steps 2-6 for competing hypotheses. (Competing hypotheses may include revisions of the original hypothesis suggested by the results of the testing process.)
 2. State a hypothesis clearly. 2. SECOND HYPOTHESIS: My neighbor, when drunk, put the boulder on the lawn. 3. Devise one or more predictions and state them clearly. 3. Evidence of a party, a bulldozer, and bulldozer tracks will be found. 4. Make observations to acquire data relevant to the predictions; organize or 'play' with the data. 4. No bulldozer is found. No bulldozer tracks are found. Marks running across the road and up the hill are found. Garbage cans overflowing with beer cans are found. 5. Evaluate the prediction in terms of the observations: draw conclusions as to how well the predictions are fulfilled. 5. The prediction is partly fulfilled. Evidence of drinking is found. 6. Evaluate the hypothesis: i.e., draw a conclusion as to how strongly the hypothesis is supported or negated. 6. The hypothesis as to drunkenness is supported; the hypothesis as to a bulldozer is not supported.
7. Repeat steps 2-6 for competing hypotheses. (Competing hypotheses may include revisions of the original hypothesis suggested by the results of the testing process.)
 2. State a hypothesis clearly. 2. REVISED SECOND HYPOTHESIS: While drunk, my neighbors rolled a boulder down the hill. 3. Devise one or more predictions and state them clearly. 3. I will find a boulder-sized hole on the hillside and it will be associated with beer bottles. 4. Make observations to acquire data relevant to the predictions; organize or 'play' with the data. 4. There is a hole and it is filled with beer bottles of the same brand as found in my neighbor's garbage cans. 5. Evaluate the prediction in terms of the observations: draw conclusions as to how well the predictions are fulfilled. 5. Highly fulfilled. Finding the same brand of beer bottles is especially convincing. 6. Evaluate the hypothesis: i.e., draw a conclusion as to how strongly the hypothesis is supported or negated. 6. Strongly supported.
8. Compare hypotheses: come to a conclusion as to which hypotheses are the strongest and the likelihood of their being true. 8. The roll-down-the-hill hypothesis is by far the strongest hypothesis, much more so than the meteorite hypothesis or the bulldozer hypothesis. The fact that the bottles in the hole were the same brand as in the garbage cans gives the hypothesis a high probability of being true.