Via BioCurious comes this article on ten “science question[s] every high school graduate should be able to answer.” Read the list — most of the questions are bullshit. Ok, they aren’t bullshit, but they are trivia. “What percentage of the earth is covered by water?” “What sorts of signals does the brain use to communicate sensations, thoughts and actions?” “Why is the sky blue?” “How old are the oldest fossils on earth?” I’ll take potpourri for $400, Alex. Here are some questions every high school graduate should be able to answer:
- What is a hypothesis?
- What is a theory?
- What is probability?
- What is an atom? What is a neutron? What is a proton? What is an electron?
- What is a molecule?
- What is a cell?
- What is a gene? What is a genome? What is the central dogma of molecular biology?
You get the point. Let’s focus on two things: the hypothetical deductive method and essential information that you must know to be able to read the science section of a newspaper.