Matthew notices that if he walks barefoot on blacktop pavement, his feet get much hotter than if he walks barefoot on grass or dirt. He wants to determine if the amount of blacktop pavement in a city will affect the overall temperature of the city. His hypothesis states that because the pavement absorbs heat from the sun, a city with more pavement will have a higher temperature. Matthew uses a map to measure the number of miles of pavement within the limits of his hometown. He then records the temperature outside of his house to see how it varies each day for one week.
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He asks his friend in the next town to complete a similar experiment. Once the data is collected, he concludes that the hypothesis is not supported.
1. What are the major flaws in Matthew's experimental design? What are the strengths of the experimental design? Explain each in detail using terms from the lesson.
2. This experiment is not able to support Matthew's hypothesis. Suggest specific improvements that will allow the experiment to more effectively test the given hypothesis. Explain why these changes are improvements.