Branches of science Category

Anton Hales / Earth sciences

Anton Hales Medal (photo

Terrestrial and planetary scientist

Anton L Hales served at the Australian National University as director of the Research School of Earth Sciences.

Professor Anton L Hales FAA, who founded the Research School of Earth Sciences in the Australian National University, worked as its director and has made immense contributions in the field of Earth Sciences. The Anton Hales Medal, awarded in his honor, is meant to encourage and recognize notable research work made in Earth Sciences.

This award is granted during a calendar year to a researcher, who has offered unstinted services and conducted research works in Earth Sciences. The awardee should preferably be forty years or less, unless he or she has made a remarkable and path-breaking research that merits the award. This annual award, given in the memory of Professor Anton Hales, is exclusively granted to a researcher of Australian descent, for carrying out such a work in Australia.

Branches of science: Biology

Biology is one of the biggest branches of natural science. It deals with studying living organisms and how they function, grow, where they originated, and how they evolved. Some of the more popular disciplines in biology are:

Botany is the scientific study of plants or plant lifes and covers areas of studies such as plant growth, metabolism, structure, and reproduction to name a few. This branch of science began with how early humans have to identify which plants are edible, medicinal, and poisonous.

Medicine is the science of diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases. It is further subdivided into different areas such as cardiology, neurology, paediatrics, pathology, and more.

Zoology studies the behaviour, physiology, structure, classification, and distribution of animal life in a particular region or geological period.

Chemistry deals with the study of properties and the interactions of substances that compose matter. This branch of natural science is further classified into various disciplines such as organic, inorganic, and physical chemistry.

Physics from the Greek word ‘physis,’ is the science of studying the nature and properties of matter and energy. It is concerned with how the universe behaves through the general analysis of nature.

Earth Science or geosciences is an all encompassing term for all sciences related to planet Earth. With Earth being a life-bearing planet, there are two approaches to this area of discipline: the holistic and reductionist.

Branches of science: Astronomy

Observing Orion during the Winter Months

The cold but clear night skies associated with winter are probably the best times to identify and view objects in space for astronomy enthusiasts. In fact, certain constellations can only be seen during winter months. For instance, looking south on a clear night, you can see three bright stars forming a row. They are the stars that form Orion’s belt and are located in the middle of the ancient Orion (The Hunter) constellation.

On Orion’s upper left is a star that goes by the name Betelgeuse. This red giant star is so large it would destroy the earth if it was our sun. On the lower right is Rigel, a rare blue giant star that is extremely hot and is 776 light years away from the earth, which means you are actually seeing back in time every time you look at Rigel. Sirius is the brightest star after our sun. It can be seen beside Orion and is only 9 light years away.

Hanging below Orion’s belt are stars in a linear pattern that hold a nebular – a glowing cloud in which new stars are born. It is given the designation M42 and is 1500 light years away. Using binoculars, the thin glowing cloud you see is the nebular. During summer, Orion becomes invisible due to the sun’s bright glow, only to come back again in the fall.

Branches of science: Zoology

Zoology is the branch of life science that focuses on the structure, function, behaviour, and evolution of animals.

Subfields of zoology

The study of animal life is, of course, ancient: but as ‘zoology’ it is relatively modern, for what we call biology was known as ‘natural history’ at the start of the nineteenth century. During the lifetime of Charles Darwin, natural history turned from a gentlemanly pursuit to a modern scientific activity. Zoology as we know it was first established in German and British universities. The institution of zoology training in British universities was mainly established by Thomas Henry Huxley. His ideas were centered on the morphology of animals: he himself is considered by many to have been the greatest comparative anatomist of the second half of the nineteenth century. His courses were composed of lectures and laboratory practical classes; and his system became widely spread.

There was much left out by Huxley, especially the study of animals in their environment, which had been the main stimulus for both Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace (who both came up with the idea of natural selection). The fact that neither Darwin nor Wallace ever held a university teaching post may have contributed to this rather startling omission. Gradually Huxley’s comparative anatomy was supplemented by other much-needed methods. The field of zoology in the twentieth century mainly comprised these approaches:

  1. Comparative anatomy studies the structure of animals.
  2. The physiology of animals is studied under various fields including anatomy and embryology
  3. The common genetic and developmental mechanisms of animals and plants is studied in molecular biology, molecular genetics and developmental biology
  4. Ethology is the study of animal behavior.
  5. The ecology of animals is covered under behavioral ecology and other fields
  6. Evolutionary biology of both animals and plants is considered in the articles on evolution, population genetics, heredity, variation, Mendelism, reproduction.
  7. Systematics, cladistics, phylogenetics, phylogeography, biogeography and taxonomy classify and group species via common descent and regional associations.
  8. The various taxonomically-oriented disciplines such as mammalogy, herpetology, ornithology identify and classify species, and study the structures and mechanisms specific to those groups. Entomology is the study of insects, by far the largest group of animals.
  9. Palaeontology, including all that may be learnt of ancient environments.

Related links:

Department of Zoology : The University of Melbourne30 Oct 2008 … The department has links with the Melbourne Zoo and other institutions. Includes seminar schedule and department photo.

ScienceNetwork WA – Zoologist
Meet Dr Natalie Warburton, ZoologistI am a consultant zoologist, currently working … If you’re interested in becoming a zoologist, keep up your interest, …

Branches of science: Physics

Physics (Greek: physis – φύσις meaning “nature”) is the natural science which examines basic concepts such as energy, force, and spacetime and all that derives from these, such as mass, charge, matter and its motion. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the world and universe behave. Note that the term ‘universe’ is defined as everything that physically exists: the entirety of space and time, all forms of matter, energy and momentum, and the physical laws and constants that govern them. However, the term ‘universe’ may also be used in slightly different contextual senses, denoting concepts such as the cosmos, the philosophical world, and nature. (from wikipedia)

Branches of science: Meteorology

Meteorology (from Greek μετέωρος, metéōros, “high in the sky”; and -λογία, -logia) is the interdisciplinary scientific study of the atmosphere that focuses on weather processes and forecasting (in contrast with climatology). Meteorological phenomena are observable weather events which illuminate and are explained by the science of meteorology. Those events are bound by the variables that exist in Earth’s atmosphere. They are temperature, air pressure, water vapor, and the gradients and interactions of each variable, and how they change in time. (wikipedia)

Branches of science: Chemistry

Chemistry (from Egyptian kēme (chem), meaning “earth”) is the science concerned with the composition, structure, and properties of matter, as well as the changes it undergoes during chemical reactions. It is a physical science for studies of various atoms, molecules, crystals and other aggregates of matter whether in isolation or combination, which incorporates the concepts of energy and entropy in relation to the spontaneity of chemical processes. (wikipedia)

Branches of science: Geology-Earth Science

Geology (from Greek: γη, gê, “earth”; and λόγος, logos, “speech” lit. to talk about the earth) is the science and study of the solid and liquid matter that constitute the Earth. The field of geology encompasses the study of the composition, structure, physical properties, dynamics, and history of Earth materials, and the processes by which they are formed, moved, and changed. The field is important in academics, industry (due to mineral and hydrocarbon extraction), and for social issues such as geotechnical engineering, the mitigation of natural hazards, and knowledge about past climate and climate change. The earth sciences are central to all aspects of life. (wikipedia)

Branches of science

There are many branches of science which concentrate themselves on the many areas of discovery. The majority of sciences end in -ology which is a suffix meaning “the study of”.

The larger fields of science can be broken down into smaller and smaller areas of study.

Despite the many branches of science, they all gather information in similar ways. The scientific method is a way to organize and standardize the method of data gathering during experiments. This makes it easier to replicate experiments which adds credence to the initial results.

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