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Table 5 Categorization of respondent definitions

From: “It’s just a theory”: trainee science teachers’ misunderstandings of key scientific terminology

Theory Code
Unproven Ideas UPI
A system of Ideas SOI
Evidenced Ideas EVI
Evidenced Ideas, not yet a Law EINL
A guess/Guesswork GUE
Proven Hypothesis PRH
Tested Hypothesis THE
No definition ND
Other definition OD
Evidence or verified Information EVI
Truth, proven or reality TPR
Known to have occurred/existed KOE
A Datum point DAP
No Definition ND
Other definition OD
Rule or generalization for natural phenomena RNP
Proven with no exceptions/doubt PNE
Rule that governs behavior in society RBS
Proven theory/hypothesis PTH
Ideas for hypothesis generation IHG
No Definition ND
Other definition OD
Testable Idea/Prediction TIP
Prediction based on evidence PBE
Prediction PRE
Prediction based on theory PBT
Educated guess EDG
Untested theory UNT
No Definition ND
Other definition OD