# Interpreting data

INTERPRETING DATA AND THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD

Correlation is a linear relationship or association between two or more things, for example, there

is a positive correlation between height and shoe size – shorter people usually have a smaller

shoe size and taller people usually have a larger shoe size.

1. [5 points] Using the graphs shown above, create labels for the x-axis and y-axis that would

show a real-life example of a positive and negative correlation. Be creative but keep it

appropriate!

1. [5 points] Correlation does not equal causation is a common phrase in science. What does

this mean?

1. [5 points] Using the data on water withdrawal in the U.S (next page), create a testable

hypothesis to explain the trends in water withdrawal. This scenario does not have to be true it

has to be testable (able to be supported with further research or experiments). Keep them

appropriate. Data source: https://www.usgs.gov/special-topic/water-science-

school/science/total-water-use-united-states?qt-science_center_objects=0#qt-

science_center_objects

1. [5 points] There are two trees, Tree A and Tree B, that grow under very specific temperature

conditions. Design an experiment that tests for what temperature ranges Tree A and Tree B

grow best.

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE & ECONOMIES

1. [5 points] What are the four ways we can measure the wealth of nations? What are the

problems with only using GNP and GDP to measure national wealth?

1. [5 points] Explain why understanding the impact human activity has on the environment is

important to determining economic policies?

EARTH AND ITS RESOURCES

1. [10 points] Most plastics are considered organic compounds (made of combinations of

carbon with hydrogen and oxygen). What happens to plastics that are in landfills, dumps, or

in the ocean? (In other words: How long does it take them to decompose?) Using this

information and the Law of Conservation of Matter, what is happening to the carbon,

hydrogen, and oxygen used in plastics? Why might this be a problem?

1. [10 points] Many nutrient cycles go through all four spheres that we have discussed: the

biosphere, geosphere/lithosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere. Choose a nutrient cycle

(sulfur, carbon, nitrogen, or phosphorus), and discuss how the nutrient moves through the

different spheres.

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