Debates on scientific dating
For a background foundation, read An Overview of Scientific Method, Section 1. In my model of ), an experimental system is defined as everything involved in an experiment.
Theory evaluation based on observations, using hypothetico-deductive logic, is often considered the foundation of scientific method. For example, when x-rays are used to study the structure of DNA, the system includes the x-ray source, DNA, and x-ray detector/recorder, plus the physical context (such as the bolts and plates used to fix the positions of the source, DNA, and detector).
It can be useful to distinguish between descriptive and explanatory theories, even though there is no distinct line; Newton's theory explains some, and atomic theory does not explain all.
And my simple treatment here is only a summary of the more sophisticated analyses by philosophers who try to define what constitutes a satisfactory explanation in science.
SUPPLEMENTARY THEORIES include, but are not limited to, theories used to interpret observations. By using a model that is based on a specified experimental system and relevant theories (main supplementary), scientists can make predictions in more than one way: by logical deduction beginning with a composition-and-operation model, by making model-based calculations, by "running a model" mentally or in a computer simulation, or by inductive logic that assumes the results will be similar to those in previous experiments with similar systems.
Shapere (1982) analyzes an "observation situation" as a 3-stage process in which information is released by a source, is transmitted, and is received by a receptor, with scientists interpreting this information according to their corresponding theories of the source, the transmission process, and the receptor. If predictions can be made in several ways for the same system, this will serve as a cross-check on the predictions and on the predicting methods. Thinking in terms of a domain-theory and a system-theory is also useful for the retroductive generation of ideas for a theory.
The following elaboration assumes the reader is familiar with the "Overview of Scientific Method" as background knowledge.But in scientific hypothetico-deduction, deductive inference often produces probabilistic predictions.For example, a genetics theory may predict that 25% of offspring will have a recessive variation of a trait.Also, my recently revised post-Ph D models for Design Processinclude Science Process because Science is a special type of Design.that keep you inside the page and are extremely fast (*) when using your browser's BACK-button so you can return to where you were.