Definition of independent variable
Origin of independent variable
Words nearby independent variable
MORE ABOUT INDEPENDENT VARIABLE
What is an independent variable?
In the context of scientific experiments, an independent variable is a factor that you change to see how it affects the results.
So, for instance, if you’re measuring how effective a medication is, independent variables could include the amount of dosage, how frequently it’s taken, and the characteristics of each test subject, such as their age and weight.
In general, a variable is called a variable because it can vary. It’s any factor that could change or be changed. In the context of scientific experiments, there are three different types of variables: dependent variables, independent variables, and control variables. Independent variables are the factors that you change. Dependent variables are things that are affected by the changes that you make—the results of the tests (which depend on the independent variables). Control variables are the factors that you do not change. They are kept the same for every test or measurement in order to make sure that the results can be compared fairly.
For example, let’s say you’re trying to figure out which brand of plant food will help a sunflower grow to the tallest height. The dependent variable is the final height of the sunflower. The independent variable (the factor that you change) is the brand of plant food. There are a number of other factors that could impact the growth of the plant, including things like the amount of sunlight and the amount of water. To allow for a proper comparison of the results, these need to be control variables—they need to be controlled, or kept the same. This way, you can have a greater degree of certainty that the final difference in heights (the dependent variable) is due to which food each sunflower received (the independent variable), not differences in sunlight or water.
Why are independent variables important?
Science is messy. We like to think of experimentation as a simple process of “change one thing and record what happens,” but in reality, every possible subject of study has dozens of different factors that can impact the results—the variables. The one thing that you change is the independent variable.
Scientists are trained to be careful when setting all the variables for an experiment. It’s especially important to keep track of the independent variables so you know how you arrived at the results that you did.
Understanding the importance of variables will make you more likely to draw sound conclusions and less likely to fall for claims based on faulty science. For example, when examining suspicious statistics or experiment results, a good place to start is to ask what independent variables were involved—what was changed to get the results.
Did you know … ?
The term independent variable is used in the context of formal scientific experiments, but you use the same concept all the time without thinking about it. The process of trial and error involves trying new methods of doing something until you get the results you want. The new methods are the independent variables and the results of each attempt are the dependent variables.
What are real-life examples of independent variables?
Independent variables are crucial elements of any experiment, regardless of what is being studied.
Students experiment with different-material balls (independent variable) and same dropping distance (control variable), to determine height of the bounce (dependent variable). Good work, 6White Science students. @cjhdragons #d26embracethejourney pic.twitter.com/1QBWjD0aQS
— Sarah Edwards, BS, MA (@safetysarah11) October 1, 2019
What other words are related to independent variable?
True or False?
In an experiment, the independent variable is the one that you change.
How to use independent variable in a sentence
How long the food lays on the floor is the independent variable.
The thing that the person manipulates is the independent variable.
In an idealized scenario where the only independent variable is time, the second law is effectively an “ordinary differential equation,” which one can solve to calculate the position or velocity of the object at any moment in time.Latest Neural Nets Solve World’s Hardest Equations Faster Than Ever Before|Anil Ananthaswamy|April 19, 2021|Quanta Magazine
We took the independent variables and measured it against the fatalities.Cuomo’s Nursing Home Scandal Raises Questions for One of His Senior Aides|by Joe Sexton|March 10, 2021|ProPublica
The Independent, quoted the duo as saying “we have some offers but we cannot say anything at the moment.”Juiciest ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Rumors (and Some Debunked Ones)|Rich Goldstein|January 3, 2015|DAILY BEAST
The issue polls well among Democratic, Republican, and independent voters.
For the last nine years, they have battled secular Baluch nationalists who would like to see an independent Baluchistan.The Dangerous Drug-Funded Secret War Between Iran and Pakistan|Umar Farooq|December 29, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I am reminded of the story of Senator Bernie Sanders (Independent, VT) walking along the shores of Lake Champlain.
This is a job for independent committees, like Bowles-Simpson, not a partisan slugfest.
It is small in cloudy swelling from toxins and drugs, and variable in renal tuberculosis and neoplasms.A Manual of Clinical Diagnosis|James Campbell Todd
So far Murat had always held subordinate commands; his great ambition was to become the commander-in-chief of an independent army.Napoleon's Marshals|R. P. Dunn-Pattison
In a strict sense, of course, no child's drawing is absolutely spontaneous and independent of external stimulus and guidance.Children's Ways|James Sully
Many persons impede their execution by not keeping the thumb independent enough of the rest of the hand.Music-Study in Germany|Amy Fay
While the majority pulled in one way there was an active minority that wished the Nana to set up an independent kingdom.The Red Year|Louis Tracy