INQUIRY and The National Science Education Standards
Inquiry Inquiry is, first of all, a way of doing business in science.
Inquiry “Doing” is the KEY. It implies activities like investigating, data collection, data interpretation, prediction, and testing. And it also implies understandings like how and why to hold variables constant while testing just one variable.
Inquiry However, any one or two of these activities performed in isolation does not constitute inquiry. Example: “data collection” is data collection, nothing more. Nor does just understanding about inquiry, constitute inquiry.
Inquiry Scientific inquiry Is a concerted effort, involving many prescribed activities, to provide the best explanation for phenomena. Note that phenomena are events that we have experienced or observed. They are explained through investigation or inquiry.
Inquiry Human inquiry Implies the use of the reasoning and procedural skills of scientists. Note that science is a specific form of human endeavor.
Inquiry Classroom Inquiry According to the National Science Education Standards, classroom inquiry involves both: I. Abilities to design and conduct scientific investigations, and II. Understandings about scientific inquiry. This is, of course, consistent with all other understandings of inquiry.