Learn All These Key Terms Related to Science and Technology

As science and technology continue to evolve at a rapid pace, the vocabulary surrounding these fields also expands. Whether you’re a student, a professional, or simply an interested observer, understanding the key terms in science and technology can enrich your knowledge and help you engage more effectively in discussions about these important topics.

This comprehensive guide will provide you with an overview of the essential vocabulary in various categories related to science and technology.

Table of Contents

1. Basic Scientific Methodology

Scientific methodology forms the backbone of scientific discovery. Here are some terms to understand this systematic approach.

Word/PhraseMeaning/UsageExample Sentences
HypothesisAn educated guess or prediction that can be tested“The scientist formed a hypothesis about the behavior of the particles.”
ExperimentA test under controlled conditions to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law“They conducted an experiment to test the strength of different materials.”
Control GroupIn an experiment, the group that does not receive the experimental treatment“The control group received a placebo instead of the medication.”
VariableAny factor that can be controlled, changed, or measured in an experiment“The temperature was a key variable in their experiment.”
DataFactual information, especially information organized for analysis or used as the basis for a decision“She collected data on plant growth rates.”
AnalysisThe detailed examination of the elements or structure of something“After gathering data, they performed an analysis.”
ConclusionA judgment or decision reached by reasoning“The experiment led to the conclusion that light affects plant growth.”
TheoryA well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of facts that have been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment“The theory of evolution explains the diversity of life on Earth.”
Peer ReviewThe process by which the work of scholars in a field is checked by their peers to ensure its quality“The scientist’s research was subjected to peer review before publication.”
ReplicationThe repetition of an experiment to confirm findings or to ensure accuracy“The replication of the study confirmed the original findings.”

2. Biology

Biology is the study of living organisms. Here are key terms for discussing this life science.

Word/PhraseMeaning/UsageExample Sentences
CellThe smallest structural and functional unit of an organism“The human body is composed of billions of cells.”
DNAThe molecule carrying genetic instructions for the growth, development, functioning, and reproduction of all known organisms“DNA sequencing is used to identify different species.”
EvolutionThe process by which species of organisms arise from earlier life forms and undergo change over time through natural selection“Darwin’s theory of evolution revolutionized biology.”
EcosystemA community of living organisms in conjunction with the nonliving components of their environment, interacting as a system“Coral reefs are diverse ecosystems.”
SpeciesThe largest group of organisms in which two individuals can produce fertile offspring“There are approximately 8.7 million species on Earth.”
PhotosynthesisThe process by which green plants and some other organisms use sunlight to synthesize foods with the aid of chlorophyll“Photosynthesis is how plants produce oxygen and glucose.”
BiodiversityThe variety and variability of life on Earth“The Amazon rainforest is known for its high biodiversity.”
GenomeThe complete set of genes or genetic material present in a cell or organism“The Human Genome Project mapped the entire human genome.”
MetabolismThe chemical processes that occur within a living organism in order to maintain life“A high metabolism can lead to weight loss.”
OrganismAn individual animal, plant, or single-celled life form“Bacteria are single-celled organisms.”

3. Physics

Physics is the branch of science concerned with the nature and properties of matter and energy. Here are key terms for understanding and discussing physics.

Word/PhraseMeaning/UsageExample Sentences
ForceA push or pull upon an object resulting from the object’s interaction with another object“Gravity is a force that pulls objects toward each other.”
EnergyThe capacity to do work or produce heat“Potential energy is stored energy.”
Quantum MechanicsA fundamental theory in physics that provides a description of the physical properties of nature at the scale of atoms and subatomic particles“Quantum mechanics has revolutionized our understanding of the physical world.”
ParticleA minute portion of matter“An atom is composed of particles called protons, neutrons, and electrons.”
VelocityThe speed of something in a given direction“The velocity of the car was 60 mph to the north.”
MomentumThe quantity of motion of a moving body, measured as a product of its mass and velocity“A heavier object has more momentum than a lighter one moving at the same speed.”
GravityThe force that attracts a body toward the center of the earth, or toward any other physical body having mass“Gravity keeps us grounded on the Earth’s surface.”
ThermodynamicsThe branch of physics that deals with the relationships between heat and other forms of energy“Thermodynamics explains how heat engines work.”
RelativityThe theory developed by Albert Einstein in 1915 which is the current description of gravitation in modern physics“The theory of relativity led to new ways of thinking about time and space.”
AtomThe smallest unit of a chemical element that retains the properties of that element“An atom consists of a nucleus and electron cloud.”

4. Chemistry

Chemistry is the branch of science that deals with the identification of substances and the investigation of their properties. Here are key terms for understanding and discussing chemistry.

Word/PhraseMeaning/UsageExample Sentences
ElementA substance that cannot be broken down into simpler substances by chemical means“Gold is an element.”
CompoundA substance formed when two or more chemical elements are chemically bonded together“Water is a compound made from hydrogen and oxygen.”
MoleculeThe smallest particle in a chemical element or compound that has the chemical properties of that element or compound“A water molecule consists of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom.”
ReactionA process in which one or more substances, the reactants, are converted to one or more different substances, the products“In a chemical reaction, the final substance is different from the starting substances.”
AcidA molecule or other entity that can donate a proton or accept an electron pair in reactions“Citric acid is found in citrus fruits.”
BaseA substance that can accept protons or donate a pair of valence electrons“Sodium hydroxide is a common base.”
pHA scale used to specify the acidity or basicity of an aqueous solution“Lemon juice has a pH of about 2, making it acidic.”
Chemical bondA lasting attraction between atoms, ions or molecules that enables the formation of chemical compounds“Covalent bonds form when atoms share electrons.”
CatalystA substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change“Enzymes are catalysts in many biological reactions.”
SolventA substance that dissolves a solute, resulting in a solution“Water is known as the universal solvent.”

5. Technology

Technology plays a vital role in our lives, constantly changing the way we live, work, and communicate. Here are key terms for understanding and discussing technology.

Word/PhraseMeaning/UsageExample Sentences
InternetA global network of computers and servers that allows the exchange of information“The internet has revolutionized communication and research.”
SoftwarePrograms and other operating information used by a computer“Microsoft Office is a popular software suite.”
HardwareThe physical parts of a computer or related device“The monitor, keyboard, and hard drive are all examples of computer hardware.”
DatabaseA structured set of data stored in a computer or server“Customer information is often stored in a database.”
ProgrammingThe process of designing and building an executable computer program to accomplish a specific task“She’s learning programming to become a software engineer.”
Artificial IntelligenceThe simulation of human intelligence processes by machines, especially computer systems“Artificial intelligence is being used to develop self-driving cars.”
CybersecurityThe practice of protecting computers, servers, mobile devices, electronic systems, networks, and data from digital attacks“With the increase in cyber attacks, companies are investing more in cybersecurity.”
Cloud ComputingThe delivery of computing services over the internet rather than using local servers or personal devices“Many businesses are moving to cloud computing for their data storage needs.”
AlgorithmA set of rules or procedures for solving a problem or accomplishing a task, especially by a computer“Search engines use complex algorithms to deliver relevant results.”
Virtual RealityA simulated experience that can be similar to or completely different from the real world“Virtual reality technology is increasingly used in gaming and training simulations.”


Understanding the vocabulary of science and technology is crucial for anyone interested in these fields, whether for professional development, academic study, or personal interest. While this guide provides an overview, remember that language is always evolving, particularly in rapidly changing fields like science and technology.

Keeping up with new terms and concepts can be challenging, but it’s also an exciting part of lifelong learning in these dynamic areas.

Niaj A A Khan is an ESL Instructor with over 7 years of experience in teaching & developing resources at different universities and institutes. Mr. Khan is also a passionate writer working on his first book, "Learn English at Ease."

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