Hypotheses are the central element of the scientific method and the way in which we can make conjectures. However, it is sometimes difficult to understand the logic behind these approaches. That is why we are going to take a tour of 25 examples of hypotheses with the aim of clarifying the operation of the scientific method . Examples of hypothesis in research
What is a hypothesis and what is it for?
Before going into explaining each of the 25 examples of hypotheses, we must define this concept. The word hypothesis comes from the Greek and means below the conclusion supported by reasoning. This is a statement about an issue that we are trying to verify . The moment this occurs, the hypothesis will cease to be so to become a verified statement, because we have verified that the phenomenon in question occurs as we had anticipated.
The hypothesis is the fundamental body of the scientific method. Any advance in science is preceded by the establishment of a scientific hypothesis that a researcher has raised. The important thing is that this hypothesis must have been formulated based on previously collected data . Afterwards, it can be maintained as a proposal that tries to explain a phenomenon whose operation until now was unknown.
The other option is to try to prove this hypothesis through empirical testing. For this, the hypothesis must be falsifiable, that is, it must be clear enough for the researchers to be able to carry out the experiment to verify that the approach and the result are correct or, on the contrary, they are not.
In order to state a hypothesis, the first thing we have to do is gather all the available data that we need . Then we will have to compare them in order to establish the different explanations for the phenomenon we are studying. Finally, we will choose the one that offers us a greater probability of being plausible and we will formulate the hypothesis on it.
Listed with 25 examples of hypotheses, explained
Once we know in detail what the concept at hand consists of, we can now list the 25 examples of hypotheses that will allow us to consolidate this knowledge.
1. The life expectancy of elephants
A first hypothesis could be that the life expectancy of elephants is 70 years. In order to formulate it, we will have to have verified the age at which the majority of elephant specimens die according to the records. Once the data has been collected, we will carry out the average to verify that, indeed, these animals die when they reach a figure around 70 years. Examples of hypothesis in research
2. On Mars there was liquid water
Another hypothesis would be that there was liquid water on Mars. In this case, it is evident that scientists cannot travel back in time and verify that the Red Planet did indeed house water in a liquid state, but they can base their affirmation on evidence that exists today, such as geographical accidents that could have been generated by the course of rivers.
3. Each generation is smarter than the last.
The hypothesis that each generation of human beings is more intelligent than the predecessor must be verified by comparing the IQ studies of the different generations to see if the results actually improve in each cycle.
4. Diamond is the hardest mineral
To test whether the hypothesis that diamond is the hardest mineral is true, geologists have to test the hardness of all known minerals. If the diamond turns out to be the hardest of all of them, the hypothesis will be verified as true, at least until a harder one is found.
5. The vote in favor of Brexit was higher in rural areas
If before the Brexit elections, the studies prepared hypotheses such as that the vote in favor of it would be more abundant in rural regions than in urban areas, this statement could be corroborated once all the votes had been counted and a map was made by zones.
6. It is possible to condition insects
Another of the 25 examples of hypotheses could be that it is possible to apply the learning method known as conditioning even in insects. The studies to verify this will involve investigations that try to condition some of these animal species, as has been done. Examples of hypothesis in research
7. Vitamin C improves the immune system
Medical researchers could have considered that certain doses of vitamin C in the human body were capable of improving our immune system. The study would imply the application of this vitamin in a study group compared to a control group to which it would not be supplied . If the former developed a stronger immune system, it would mean that the hypothesis was correct.
8. The freezing point of mercury is -38.83ºC
Another example of hypothesis would be that the freezing point of mercury is set at -38.83ºC, easily verifiable by lowering the temperature of this material and checking the exact degree to which the change in the state of matter occurs. .
9. Millions of years ago there was a primeval continent
Geologists hypothesize that millions of years ago, there was a single continent on Earth, which they call Pangea. It cannot be directly verified because it is a past event, but research suggests that this hypothesis is correct.
10. Legislation on abortion in Catholic countries versus Protestants
A sociological hypothesis could state that traditionally Catholic countries are more restrictive on abortion legislation than Protestant countries. To check whether the hypothesis is correct or not, it would be necessary to review the laws of Catholic countries and those of Protestants on this matter and establish a general comparison.
11. Chimpanzees have a theory of mind
Continuing with the 15 examples of hypotheses, another one would be that chimpanzees have a theory of mind. Studies on this issue have to empirically check with some specimens of these animals if they pass certain tests that are key to making such a statement.
12. The cheetah can reach 130 km / h
The hypothesis that cheetahs can reach 130 km / h while running would have to be corroborated by making measurements of these animals when they are at their top speed, chasing a prey in an open field. Examples of hypothesis in research
13. Black holes emit radiation
One hypothesis established by physicist Stephen Hawking is that black holes emit radiation, Hawking radiation. Thanks to an experiment using an analogous model developed by Dr. Juan Ramón Muñoz de Nova and published in the journal Nature in 2019, it has been shown that such radiation does indeed exist.
14. There is phosphane gas in the atmosphere of Venus
One of the most recent studies tries to test the hypothesis of whether there is indeed phosphane gas in the atmosphere of Venus, which could be a biological indicator.
15. Participation in elections will exceed 70%
Continuing the list of the 25 examples of hypotheses, we could anticipate that the turnout in the following general elections would exceed 70%. The only way to test the hypothesis is to wait for the count and see if this figure is actually exceeded.
16. Dogs can learn by imitation
A hypothesis about animal behavior would be that dogs are capable of learning by imitation, that is, by vicarious learning. There are studies in this regard in which researchers have developed situations to verify the claim and have concluded that it is correct.
17. The blue whale is the largest animal in the world
One statement in hypothesis form is that there is no animal larger than the blue whale in the world. So far it has been proven true, since none of them exceed the 29 meters that this cetacean can reach. Examples of hypothesis in research
18. Earth’s escape velocity is 11.19 km / s
Physicists at the time established the hypothesis that no object can leave the Earth if it does not exceed 11.19 km / s. This statement was based on calculations and was later empirically verified by launching the first rockets that managed to leave the atmosphere behind.
19. The deepest place on Earth is the Mariana Trench
Another hypothesis states that there is no deeper point on our planet than that of the Mariana Trench. This place reaches 11 kilometers below sea level and so far no deeper one has been found.
20. The continent with the highest birth rate is Africa
In the 25 examples of hypotheses we could include that Africa is the continent with the highest birth rate. This statement can be verified in a simple way, establishing a comparison between the indicators of the five continents and verifying that the African is the largest of them.
21. Breathing exercises reduce anxiety
A hypothesis related to anxiety pathology is that certain breathing exercises reduce this symptomatology, at least in part. It can be verified with an experimental group against a control group.
22. Homo sapiens emerged more than 300,000 years ago
The hypothesis that our species has been on Earth for at least 300,000 years has been proven to be true, since there are sites with remains of Homo sapiens dating back 315,000 years.
23. Pluto takes 247 years to complete the translation
Astronomers could hypothesize that Pluto takes more than 247 years to complete a cycle around the Sun, a testable matter by making the corresponding observations and calculations.
24. The highest mountain in the Solar System is Mount Olympus
Likewise, it could be said that there is no higher mountain in the entire Solar System than Mount Olympus, on Mars, since it reaches 22.5 km in height and no higher elevation of the terrain has been observed. Examples of hypothesis in research
25. The Dutch are the tallest Europeans
The last of the hypothesis examples is that the Dutch are the tallest Europeans. We can say that the hypothesis is true by comparing the average height indices of the different countries in Europe and discovering that the Netherlands is the largest of them.