Science Is a Process (1 of 4)

atom
No person has ever looked inside an atom but we know what is there.

Scientific ideas are developed through reasoning.
 
deep time
No person has lived through deep time but we know it has occurred.
 
Inferences are logical conclusions based on observable facts. Much of what we know from scientific study is based on inferences from data, whether the object of study is a star or an atom. No person has ever seen inside an atom, yet we know, by inference, what is there. Atoms have been disassembled and their components determined. The history of life on Earth has likewise been inferred through multiple lines of evidence.

Scientific claims are based on testing explanations against observations of the natural world and rejecting the ones that fail the test.
Scientific explanations are evaluated using evidence from the natural world. That evidence may come from various sources: a controlled lab experiment, a study of anatomy, or recordings of radiation from outerspace, to name just a few. Explanations that don’t fit the evidence are rejected or are modified and tested again.

Scientific claims are subject to peer review and replication.
Peer review is an integral part of genuine scientific enterprise and goes on continuously in all areas of science. The process of peer review includes examination of other scientists’ data and logic. It attempts to identify alternative explanations, and attempts to replicate observations and experiments.

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Spanish translation of Understanding Evolution For Teachers from the Spanish Society of Evolutionary Biology.