Scientists must possess positive attitudes and values that aid them in solving problems.
- · A scientist is curious about the world.
Curiosity enables a scientist to try to discover more about the things around him or her. Galileo Galilee’s inquisitive nature led to his invention of the telescope which he used to observe outer space. Using the telescope, Galileo discovered the satellites of Jupiter, the craters on Earth’s moon, and the sunspots. This invention also made him the first person to study the moon, the sun, the planets, and the stars.
- · A scientist is logical and systematic.
The attitude enables a scientist to plan his or her work in an orderly way. Scientists became fascinated with the structure of genes after Gregor Mendel formulated the principles of heredity. These principles were a result of logical experimental methods and accurate record keeping. Mendel employed a systematic way of studying traits. For instance, he studied the inheritance of only one, then two, and finally three traits at a time. From his accurate records, he was able to see patterns from which traits would appear.
- · A scientist is open-minded.
Open-mindedness is an attitude that allows a scientist to look at other possibilities. Johannes Kepler was hired to establish proof that planets moved along perfect circles. But being the open-minded person that he was, he dropped the idea after 15 years of work upon discovering an evidence that planets followed elliptical orbits. His ability to reverse his judgment led to more interesting discoveries.
- · A scientist is intellectually honest.
This attitude allows a scientist to recognize the work done by other scientists before him or her. This attitude is also shown by reporting data truthfully. Isaac Newton acknowledged the fact that he built his laws of motion on the past works of Galileo and other scientists. It was not a hidden fact that his first law was very much like Galileo’s concept of inertia. Never claiming that he worked out physical laws on his own, Newton gave credit to the contributions of Galileo and other earlier physicists, saying that he was able to expand his vision “by standing on the shoulders of giants.”