The seven steps of the scientific method are observing an occurrence or asking a question, researching the topic, forming a hypothesis, designing and conducting an experiment, analyzing results, drawing a conclusion and reporting results. Scientists utilize this method to construct effective experiments that test natural cause and effect relationships.
Before a scientific experiment can be performed, proper research and preparation must take place. The first step in the scientific method is to make observations on the specific topic of interest. Scientists consider why or how something naturally occurs and develop testable questions for investigation. Once questions have been formed, the next step is to research the existing knowledge of the chosen topic to inform the subsequent steps in experiment design. After research, scientists form a hypothesis or educated prediction for what will occur during the experiment.
The next step is to design an experiment. An effective experiment tests the hypothesis and only has one variable. Scientists perform the experiment, observe and record the results and analyze what occurs. Specifically scientists consider if the results align or differ from the hypothesis. Once the results are analyzed, scientists form a conclusion. The final step in the scientific method is to communicate the results in an organized project or report.