Fred Senese · Dept. of Chemistry · Frostburg State University

Introduction to Measurements and Uncertainty

Tutorial Outline

  1. Measurement and Uncertainty Measurements are inherently uncertain; the last figure of a properly recorded measurement is just an estimate.
    1. Uncertainty in Length Measurements
    2. Uncertainty in Temperature Measurements
    3. Uncertainty in Volume Measurements from a Graduated Cylinder
    4. Exact Numbers
  2. Significant Figures are the digits in a measurement up to and including the estimated digit.
    1. Counting Significant Figures
      1. Moving the decimal point doesn't change the number of significant figures.
      2. A procedure for counting significant figures.
      3. When are zeros significant figures?
      4. Rounding to the Correct Number of Significant Figures
      5. Counting significant figures for a series of measurements

Copyright © 1997 by F. Senese
senese@antoine.fsu.umd.edu
Last Revised 12/10/01.