What Are Scientific Skills?


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Pippa Corbett Profile
Pippa Corbett answered
To be successful, there are a number of skills that a scientist needs to possess.

Rather than physical 'ability', I believe the most important thing that a good scientist should have is a 'scientific attitude or approach' to his or her work.

What are the scientific skills?

People often talk about things like 'the scientific method' when conducting an experiment or analysis.

What this concept refers to is a diligent and thorough approach that attempts to ensure that scientific research is based on fact and evidence.

Although there are millions of different applications for science, I'm of the belief that the requirements for a scientific approach always remains the same.

Based on this idea, I'd say the main scientific skills are:

  • Curiosity- The key to science is a hunger to learn. Naturally-inquisitive people make great scientists!
  • Ability to suspend judgement- A scientist never jumps to conclusions. He/she waits for hard evidence and avoids making assumptions.
  • Objectivity and open-mindedness- is really important in science. Scientists need to be able to see things in a neutral and open light, otherwise they might be influenced by non-facts and opinion, rather than by the truth.
  • Being critically-minded- Someone who is critical is always looking for catches and exceptions. This is fundamental to scientific analysis.
  • Rationality- Methodical thinking and reason are the basis of all theories and discoveries.
  • Hard-working- Science is often challenging. Only the hardest workers should apply for a job in science!
  • Patience- is a virtue as far as scientists are concerned. Results don't happen overnight, and scientists often have to persevere for years before they can obtain definitive evidence. There's no 'jumping the gun' allowed!
  • Awareness of one's limitations- A good scientist will always accept that there are limits to what he or she can know or do.

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