A hypothesis is a proposed explanation used to explain a particular phenomenon. A hypothesis becomes a scientific hypothesis when the scientific method requires that it be tested. Scientists often base scientific hypotheses on previous observations that cannot be explained satisfactorily with the current scientific theories. Even though the words theory and hypothesis are used interchangeably, a scientific hypothesis is not a scientific theory. A working hypothesis is an accepted one proposed for further research in a process that begins with an educated guess or thought.
In its ancient usage, it was used to refer to a summary of the plot of a classical drama. The English word comes from an ancient Greek word which means, in a literal or etymological sense, putting or placing under. Hence in extended use, the term has many other meanings, sometimes even tending to mean supposition.
Any useful hypotheses enable predictions through reasoning. It can be used to predict the observation of a phenomenon in nature or the outcome of a certain experiment in a laboratory setting. The prediction might also invoke statistics or just stick to talking about probabilities.
When framing hypotheses, the investigator will not know the outcome of a test because only in such cases does the experiment or study increase the probability of showing the truth of the same.
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