Science as Inquiry (8ASI)
Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
8ASI1.1 Identify questions that can be answered through scientific
investigations. Students should develop the ability to refine
and refocus broad and ill-defined questions. An important aspect
of this ability consists of students ability to clarify
questions and inquiries and direct them toward objects and phenomena
that can be described, explained, or predicted by scientific investigations.
Students should develop the ability to identify their questions
with scientific ideas, concepts, and quantitative relationships
that guide investigation.
8ASI1.2 Design and conduct a scientific investigation. Students
should develop general abilities, such as systematic observation,
making accurate measurements, and identifying and controlling
variables. They should also develop the ability to clarify their
ideas that are influencing and guiding the inquiry, and to understand
how those ideas compare with current scientific knowledge. Students
can learn to formulate questions, design investigations, execute
investigations, interpret data, use evidence to generate explanations,
propose alternative explanations, and critique explanations and
8ASI1.3 Use appropriate tools and techniques to gather, analyze,
and interpret data. The use of tools and techniques, including
mathematics, will be guided by the question asked and the investigations
students design. The use of computers for the collection, summary,
and display of evidence is part of this standard. Students should
be able to access, gather, store, retrieve, and organize data,
using hardware and software designed for these purposes.
8ASI1.4 Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions, and
models using evidence. Students should base their explanation
on what they observed, and as they develop cognitive skills, they
should be able to differentiate explanation from description
providing causes for effects and establishing relationships based
on evidence and logical argument. This standards requires a subject
knowledge base so the students can effectively conduct investigations,
because developing explanations establishes connections between
the content of science and the contexts within which students
develop new knowledge.
8ASI1.5 Think critically and logically to make the relationships
between evidence and explanations. Thinking critically about evidence
includes deciding what evidence should be used and accounting
for anomalous data. Specifically, students should be able to review
data from a simple experiment, summarize the data, and form a
logical argument about the cause-and-effect relationships in the
experiment. Students should begin to state some explanations in
terms of the relationship between two or more variables.
8ASI1.6 Recognize and analyze alternative explanations and predictions.
Students should develop the ability to listen and to respect the
explanations proposed by other students. They should remain open
to and acknowledge different ideas and explanations, be able to
accept the skepticism of others, and consider alternative explanations.
8ASI1.7 Communicate scientific procedures and explanations. With
practice, students should become competent at communicating experimental
methods, following instructions, describing observations, summarizing
the results of other groups, and telling other students about
investigations and explanations.
8ASI1.8 Use mathematics in all aspects of scientific inquiry.
Mathematics is essential to asking and answering questions about
the natural world. Mathematics can be used to ask questions; to
gather, organize, and present data; and to structure convincing
Understandings about scientific inquiry
8ASI2.1 Different kinds of questions suggest different kinds
of scientific investigations. Some investigations involve observing
and describing objects, organisms, or events; some involve collecting
specimens; some involve experiments; some involve seeking more
information; some involve discovery of new objects and phenomena;
and some involve making models.
8ASI2.2 Current scientific knowledge and understanding guide
scientific investigations. Different methods, core theories, and
standards to advance scientific knowledge and understanding.
8ASI2.3 Mathematics is important in all aspects of scientific
8ASI2.4 Technology used to gather data enhances accuracy and
allows scientists to analyze and quantify results of investigations.
8ASI2.5 Scientific explanations emphasize evidence, have logically
consistent arguments, and use scientific principles, models and
theories. The scientific community accepts and uses such explanations
until displaced by better scientific ones. When such displacement
occurs, science advances.
8ASI2.6 Science advances through legitimate skepticism. Asking
questions and querying other scientists explanations is
part of scientific inquiry. Scientists evaluate the explanations
proposed by other scientists by examining evidence, comparing
evidence, identifying faulty reasoning, pointing out statements
that go beyond the evidence, and suggesting alternative explanations
for the same observations.
8ASI2.7 Scientific investigations sometimes result in new ideas
and phenomena for study, generate new methods or procedures for
an investigation, or develop new technologies to improve the collection
of data. All of these results can lead to new investigations.
Physical Science (8BPS)
Properties and changes of properties in matter
8BPS1.1 A substance has characteristic properties, such as density,
a boiling point, and solubility, all of which are independent
of the amount of the sample. A mixture of substances often can
be separated into the original substances using one or more of
the characteristic properties.
8BPS1.2 Substances react chemically in characteristic ways with
other substances to form new substances (compounds) with different
characteristic properties. In chemical reactions, the total mass
is conserved. Substances often are placed in categories or groups
if they react in similar ways; metals is an example of such a
8BPS1.3 Chemical elements do not break down during normal laboratory
reactions involving such treatments as heating, exposure to electric
current, or reaction with acids. There are more than 100 known
elements that combine in a multitude of ways to produce compounds,
which account for the living and nonliving substances that we
Motions and forces
8BPS2.1 The motion of an object can be described by its position,
direction of motion, and speed. That motion can be measured and
represented on a graph.
8BPS2.2 An object that is not being subjected to a force will
continue to move at a constant speed and in a straight line.
8BPS2.3 If more than one force acts on an object along a straight
line, then the forces will reinforce or cancel one another, depending
on their direction and magnitude. Unbalanced forces will cause
changes in the speed or direction of an objects motion.
Transfer of energy
8BPS3.1 Energy is a property of many substances and is associated
with heat, light, electricity, mechanical motion, sound, nuclei
and the nature of a chemical. Energy is transferred in many ways.
8BPS3.2 Heat moves in predictable ways, flowing from warmer objects
to cooler ones, until both reach the same temperature.
8BPS3.3 Light interacts with matter by transmission (including
refraction), absorption, or scattering (including reflection).
To see an object, light from that object emitted by or
scattered from it must enter the eye.
8BPS3.4 Electrical circuits provide a means of transferring electrical
energy when heat, light, sound, and chemical changes are produced.
8BPS3.5 In most chemical and nuclear reactions, energy is transferred
into or out of a system. Heat, light, mechanical motion, or electricity
might all be involved in such transfers.
8BPS3.6 The sun is a major source of energy for changes on the
earths surface. The sun loses energy by emitting light.
A tiny fraction of that light reaches the earth, transferring
energy from the sun to the earth. The suns energy arrives
as light with a range of wavelengths, consisting of visible light,
infrared, and ultraviolet radiation.
Life Science (8CLS)
Structure and function in living systems
8CLS1.1 Living systems at all levels of organization demonstrate
the complimentary nature of structure and function. Important
levels of organization for structure and function include cells,
organs, tissues, organ systems, whole organisms, and ecosystems.
8CLS1.2 All organisms are composed of cells the fundamental
unit of life. Most organisms are single cells; other organisms,
including humans, are multicellular.
8CLS1.3 Cells carry on the many functions needed to sustain life.
They grow and divide, thereby producing more cells. This requires
that they take in nutrients, which they use to provide energy
for the work that cells do and to make the materials that a cell
or an organism needs.
8CLS1.4 Specialized cells perform specialized functions in multicellular
organisms. Groups of specialized cells cooperate to form a tissue,
such as a muscle. Different tissues are in turn grouped together
to form larger functional units, called organs. Each type of cell,
tissue, and organ has a distinct structure and set of functions
that serve the organism as a whole.
8CLS1.5 The human organism has systems for digestion, respiration,
reproduction, circulation, excretion, movement, control, and coordination,
and for protection from disease. These systems interact with one
8CLS1.6 Disease is a breakdown in structures or functions of
an organism. Some diseases are the result of intrinsic failures
of the system. Others are the result of damage by infection by
Reproduction and Heredity
8CLS2.1 Reproduction is a characteristic of all living systems;
because no individual organism lives forever, reproduction is
essential to the continuation of every species. Some organisms
reproduce asexually. Other organisms reproduce sexually.
8CLS2.2 In many species, including humans, females produce eggs
and males produce sperm. Plants also produce sexually the
egg and sperm are produced in the flowers of flowering plants.
An egg and sperm unite to begin development of a new individual.
That new individual receives genetic information from its mother
(via the egg) and its father (via the sperm). Sexually produced
offspring never are identical to either of their parents.
8CLS2.3 Every organism requires a set of instructions for specifying
its traits. Heredity is the passage of these instructions from
one generation to another.
8CLS2.4 Hereditary information is contained in genes, located
in the chromosomes of each cell. Each gene carries a single unit
of information. An inherited trait of an individual can be determined
by one or by many genes, and a single gene can influence more
than one trait. A human cell contains many thousands of different
8CLS2.5 The characteristics of an organism can be described in
terms of a combination of traits. Some traits are inherited and
others result from interactions with the environment.
Regulation and behavior
8CLS3.1 All organisms must be able to obtain and use resources,
grow, reproduce, and maintain stable internal conditions while
living in a constantly changing external environment.
8CLS3.2 Regulation of an organisms internal environment
involves sensing the internal environment and changing physiologic
activities to keep conditions within the range required to survive.
8CLS3.3 Behavior is one kind of response an organism can make
to an internal or environmental stimulus. A behavioral response
requires coordination and communication at many levels, including
cells, organ systems, and whole organisms. Behavioral response
is a set of actions determined in part by heredity and in part
8CLS3.4 An organisms behavior evolves through adaptation
to its environment. How a species moves, obtains food, reproduces,
and responds to danger are based in the species evolutionary
Populations and ecosystems
8CLS4.1 A population consists of all individuals of a species
that occur together at a given place and time. All populations
living together and the physical factors with which they interact
compose an ecosystem.
8CLS4.2 Populations of organisms can be categorized by the function
they serve in an ecosystem. Plants and some microorganisms are
producers they make their own food. All animals, including
humans, are consumers, which obtain food by eating other organisms.
Decomposers, primarily bacteria and fungi, are consumers that
use waste materials and dead organisms for food. Food webs identify
the relationships among producers, consumers, and decomposers
in an ecosystem.
8CLS4.3 For ecosystems, the major source of energy is sunlight.
Energy entering ecosystems as sunlight is transferred by producers
into chemical energy through photosynthesis. That energy then
passes from organism to organism in food webs.
8CLS4.4 The number of organisms an ecosystem can support depends
on the resources available and abiotic factors, such as quantity
of light and water, range of temperatures, and soil composition.
Given adequate biotic and abiotic resources and no disease or
predators, populations (including humans) increase at rapid rates.
Lack of resources and other factors, such as predation and climate,
limit the growth of populations in specific niches in the ecosystem.
Diversity and adaptations of organisms
8CLS5.1 Millions of species of animals, plants, and microorganisms
are alive today. Although different species might look dissimilar,
the unity among organisms becomes apparent from an analysis of
internal structures, the similarity of their chemical processes,
and the evidence of common ancestry.
8CLS5.2 Biological evolution accounts for the diversity of species
developed through gradual processes over many generations. Species
acquire many of their unique characteristics through biological
adaptation, which involves the selection of naturally occurring
variations in populations. Biological adaptations include changes
in structures, behaviors, or physiology that enhance survival
and reproductive success in a particular environment
8CLS5.3 Extinction of a species occurs when the environment changes
and the adaptive characteristics of a species are insufficient
to allow its survival. Fossils indicate that many organisms that
lived long ago are extinct. Extinction of species is common; most
of the species that have lived on the earth no longer exist.
Earth and Space Science (8DESS)
Structure of the earth system
8DESS1.1 The solid earth is layered with a lithosphere; hot,
convecting mantle; and dense, metallic core.
8DESS1.2 Lithospheric plates on the scales of continents and
oceans constantly move at rates of centimeters per year in response
to movements in the mantle. Major geological events, such as earthquakes,
volcanic eruptions, and mountain building, result from these plate
8DESS1.3 Land forms are the result of a combination of constructive
and destructive forces. Constructive forces include crustal deformation,
volcanic eruption, and deposition of sediment, while destructive
forces include weathering and erosion.
8DESS1.4 Some changes in the solid earth can be described as
the "rock cycle." Old rocks at the earths surface
weather, forming sediments that are buried, then compacted, heated,
and often recrystallized into new rock. Eventually, those new
rocks may be brought to the surface by the forces that drive plate
motions, and the rock cycle continues.
8DESS1.5 Soil consists of weathered rocks and decomposed organic
material from dead plants, animals, and bacteria. Soils are often
found in layers, with each having a different chemical composition
8DESS1.6 Water, which covers the majority of the earths
surface, circulates through the crust, oceans, and atmosphere
in what is known as the "water cycle." Water evaporates
from the earths surface, rises and cools as it moves to
higher elevations, condenses as rain or snow, and falls to the
surface where it collects in lakes, oceans, soil, and in rocks
8DESS1.7 Water is a solvent. As it passes through the water cycle
it dissolves minerals and gases and carries them to the oceans.
8DESS1.8 The atmosphere is a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, and
trace gases that include water vapor. The atmosphere has different
properties at different elevations.
8DESS1.9 Clouds, formed by the condensation of water vapor, affect
weather and climate.
8DESS1.10 Global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local
weather. Oceans have a major effect on climate, because water
in the oceans holds a large amount of heat.
8DESS1.11 Living organisms have played many roles in the earth
system, including affecting the composition of the atmosphere,
producing some types of rocks, and contributing to the weathering
8DESS2.1 The earth processes we see today, including erosion,
movement of lithospheric plates, and changes in atmospheric composition,
are similar to those that occurred in the past. Earth history
is also influenced by occasional catastrophes, such as the impact
of an asteroid or comet.
8DESS2.2 Fossils provide important evidence of how life and environmental
conditions have changed.
Earth in the solar system
8DESS3.1 The earth is the third planet from the sun in a system
that includes the moon, the sun, eight other planets and their
moons, and smaller objects, such as asteroids and comets. The
sun, an average star, is the central and largest body in the solar
8DESS3.2 Most objects in the solar system are in regular and
predictable motion. Those motions explain such phenomena as the
day, the year, phases of the moon, and eclipses.
8DESS 3.3 Gravity is the force that keeps planets in orbit around
the sun and governs the rest of the motion in the solar system.
Gravity alone holds us to the earths surface and explains
the phenomena of the tides.
8DESS3.4 The sun is the major source of energy for phenomena
on the earths surface, such as growth of plants, winds,
ocean currents, and the water cycle. Seasons result from variations
in the amount of the suns energy hitting the surface, due
to the tilt of the earths rotation on its axis and the length
of the day.
Science and Technology (8EST)
Abilities of technological design
8EST1.1 Identify appropriate problems for technological design.
Students should develop their abilities by identifying a specified
need, considering its various aspects, and talking to potential
users or beneficiaries. They should appreciate that for some needs,
the cultural backgrounds and beliefs of different groups can affect
the criteria for a suitable product.
8EST1.2 Design a solution or product. Students should make and
compare different proposals in the light of the criteria they
have selected. They must consider constraints - such as cost,
time, tradeoffs, and materials needed - and communicate ideas
with drawings and simple models.
8EST1.3 Implement a proposed solution. Students should organize
materials and other resources, plan their work, make good use
of group collaboration where appropriate, choose suitable tools
and techniques, and work with appropriate measurement methods
to ensure adequate accuracy.
8EST1.4 Evaluate completed technological designs or products.
Students should use criteria relevant to the original purpose
or need, consider a variety of factors that might affect acceptability
and suitability for intended users or beneficiaries, and develop
measures of quality with respect to such criteria and factors;
they should also suggest improvements and, for their own products,
try proposed modifications.
8EST1.5 Communicate the process of technological design. Students
should review and describe any completed piece of work and identify
the stages of problem identification, solution design, implementation
Understandings about science and technology
8EST2.1 Scientific inquiry and technological design have similarities
and differences. Scientists propose explanations for questions
about the natural world, and engineers propose solutions relating
to human problems, needs and aspirations. Technological solutions
are temporary; technologies exist within nature and so they cannot
contravene physical or biological principles; technological solutions
have side effects; and technologies cost, carry risks, and provide
8EST2.2 Many different people in different cultures have made
and continue to make contributions to science and technology.
8EST2.3 Science and technology are reciprocal. Science helps
drive technology, as it addresses questions that demand more sophisticated
instruments and provides principles for better instrumentation
and technique. Technology is essential to science, because it
provides instruments and techniques that enable observations of
objects and phenomena that are otherwise unobservable due to factors
such as quantity, distance, location, size and speed. Technology
also provides tools for investigations, inquiry, and analysis.
8EST2.4 Perfectly designed solutions do not exist. All technological
solutions have tradeoffs, such as safety, cost, efficiency, and
appearance. Engineers often build in back-up systems to provide
safety. Risk is part of living in a highly technological world.
Reducing risk often results in new technology.
8EST2.5 Technological designs have constraints. Some constraints
are unavoidable, for example, properties of materials, or effects
of weather and friction; other constraints limit choices in the
design, for example, environmental protection, human safety, and
8EST2.6 Technological solutions have intended benefits and unintended
consequences. Some consequences can be predicted, others cannot.
Science in Personal and Social Perspectives (8FSPSP)
8FSPSP1.1 Regular exercise is important to the maintenance and
improvement of health. The benefits of physical fitness include
maintaining healthy weight, having energy and strength for routine
activities, good muscle tone, bone strength, strong heart/lung
systems, and improved mental health. Personal exercise, especially
developing cardiovascular endurance, is the foundation of physical
8FSPSP1.2 The potential for accidents and the existence of hazards
imposes the need for injury prevention. Safe living involves the
development and use of safety precautions and the recognition
of risk in personal and social dimensions.
8FSPSP1.3 The use of tobacco increases the risk of illness. Students
should understand the influence of short-term social and psychological
factors that lead to tobacco use, and the possible long-term detrimental
effects of smoking and chewing tobacco.
8FSPSP1.4 Alcohol and other drugs are often abused substances.
Such drugs change how the body functions and can lead to addiction.
8FSPSP1.5 Food provides energy and nutrients for growth and development.
Nutrition requirements vary with body weight, age, sex, activity,
and body functioning.
8FSPSP1.6 Sex drive is a natural human function that requires
understanding. Sex is also a prominent means of transmitting diseases.
The diseases can be prevented through a variety of precautions.
8FSPSP1.7 Natural environments may contain substances (for example,
radon and lead) that are harmful to human beings. Maintaining
environmental health involves establishing or monitoring quality
standards related to use of soil, water, and air.
Populations, resources, and environments
8FSPSP2.1 When an area becomes overpopulated, the environment
will become degraded due to the increased use of resources.
8FSPSP2.2 Causes of environmental degradation and resource depletion
vary from region to region and from country to country.
8FSPSP3.1 Internal and external processes of the earth system
cause natural hazards, events that change or destroy human and
wildlife habitats, damage property, and harm or kill humans. Natural
hazards include earthquakes, landslides, wildfires, volcanic eruptions,
floods, storms, and even possible impacts of asteroids.
8FSPSP3.2 Human activities also can induce hazards through resource
acquisition, urban growth, land-use decisions, and waste disposal.
Such activities can accelerate many natural changes.
8FSPSP3.3 Natural hazards can present personal and societal challenges
because misidentifying the change or incorrectly estimating the
rate and scale of change may result in either too little attention
and significant human costs or too much cost for unneeded preventative
Risks and benefits
8FSPSP4.1 Risk analysis considers the type of hazard and estimates
the number of people that might be exposed and the number likely
to suffer consequences. The results are used to determine the
options for reducing or eliminating risks.
8FSPSP4.2 Students should understand the risks associated with
natural hazards (fires, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes,
and volcanic eruptions), with chemical hazards (pollutants in
air, water, soil, and food), with biological hazards (pollen,
viruses, bacterial, and parasites), social hazards (occupational
safety and transportation), and with personal hazards (smoking,
dieting, and drinking).
8FSPSP4.3 Individuals can use a systematic approach to thinking
critically about risks and benefits. Examples include applying
probability estimates to risks and comparing them to estimated
personal and social benefits.
8FSPSP4.4 Important personal and social decisions are made based
on perceptions of benefits and risks.
Science and technology in society
8FSPSP5.1 Science influences society through its knowledge and
world view. Scientific knowledge and the procedures used by scientists
influence the way many individuals in society think about themselves,
others, and the environment. The effect of science on society
is neither entirely beneficial nor entirely detrimental.
8FSPSP5.2 Societal challenges often inspire questions for scientific
research, and social priorities often influence research priorities
through the availability of funding for research.
8FSPSP5.3 Technology influences society through its products
and processes. Technology influences the quality of life and the
ways people act and interact. Technological changes are often
accompanied by social, political, and economic changes that can
be beneficial or detrimental to individuals and to society. Social
needs, attitudes, and values influence the direction of technological
8FSPSP5.4 Science and technology have advanced through contributions
of many different people, in different cultures, at different
times in history. Science and technology have contributed enormously
to economic growth and productivity among societies and groups
8FSPSP5.5 Scientists and engineers work in many different settings,
including colleges and universities, businesses and industries,
specific research institutes, and government agencies.
8FSPSP5.6 Scientists and engineers have ethical codes requiring
that human subjects involved with research be fully informed about
risks and benefits associated with the research before the individuals
choose to participate. This ethic extends to potential risks to
communities and property. In short, prior knowledge and consent
are required for research involving human subjects or potential
damage to property.
8FSPSP5.7 Science cannot answer all questions and technology
cannot solve all human problems or meet all human needs. Students
should understand the difference between scientific and other
questions. They should appreciate what science and technology
can reasonably contribute to society and what they cannot do.
For example, new technologies often will decrease some risks and
History and Nature of Science (8GHNS)
Science as a human endeavor
8GHNS1.1 Women and men of various social and ethnic backgrounds
- and with diverse interests, talents, qualities, and motivations
- engage in the activities of science, engineering, and related
fields such as the health professions. Some scientists work in
teams, and some work alone, but all communicate extensively with
8GHNS1.2 Science requires different abilities, depending on such
factors as the field of study and type of inquiry. Science is
very much a human endeavor, and the work of science relies on
basic human qualities, such as reasoning, insight, energy, skill,
and creativity - as well as on scientific habits of mind, such
as intellectual honesty, tolerance of ambiguity, skepticism, and
openness to new ideas.
Nature of science
8GHNS2.1 Scientists formulate and test their explanations of
nature using observation, experiments, and theoretical and mathematical
models. Although all scientific ideas are tentative and subject
to change and improvement in principle, for most major ideas in
science, there is much experimental and observational confirmation.
Those ideas are not likely to change greatly in the future. Scientists
do and have changed their ideas about nature when they encounter
new experimental evidence that does not match their existing explanations.
8GHNS2.2 In areas where active research is being pursued and
in which there is not a great deal of experimental or observational
evidence and understanding, it is normal for scientists to differ
with one another about the interpretation of the evidence or theory
being considered. Different scientists might publish conflicting
experimental results or might draw different conclusions from
the same data. Ideally, scientists acknowledge such conflict and
work towards finding evidence that will resolve their disagreement.
8GHNS2.3 It is part of scientific inquiry to evaluate the results
of scientific investigations, experiments, observations, theoretical
models, and the explanations proposed by other scientists. Evaluation
includes reviewing the experimental procedures, examining the
evidence, identifying faulty reasoning, pointing out statements
that go beyond the evidence, and suggesting alternative explanations
for the same observations. Although scientists may disagree about
explanations of phenomena, about interpretation of data, or about
the value of rival theories, they do agree that questioning, response
to criticism, and open communication are integral to the process
of science. As scientific knowledge evolves, major disagreements
are eventually resolved through such interactions between scientists.
History of science
8GHNS3.1 Many individuals have contributed to the traditions
of science. Studying some of these individuals provides further
understanding of scientific inquiry, science as a human endeavor,
the nature of science, and the relationships between science and
8GHNS3.2 In historical perspective, science has been practiced
by different individuals in different cultures. In looking at
the history of many peoples, one finds that scientists and engineers
of high achievement are considered to be among the most valued
contributors to their culture.
8GHNS3.3 Tracing the history of science can show how difficult
it was for scientific innovators to break through the accepted
ideas of their time to reach the conclusions that we currently
take for granted.