A scientific theory is an explanation of some aspect of the natural world that is supported by a large body of evidence. It is based on observations, experiments, and data analysis.

While a scientific theory can be considered as the closest approximation to the truth, it is not always true. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this statement.

What is a Scientific Theory?

A scientific theory is not just a guess or an opinion; it is a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can be tested and verified through repeatable experiments and observations. A scientific theory has to be consistent with all available evidence and must be able to make testable predictions.

Why may a Scientific Theory not be True?

While a scientific theory may be the best explanation available at any given time, it is subject to change if new evidence emerges. There are several reasons why a scientific theory may not be true:

New Evidence

New evidence can contradict or challenge existing theories. For example, the discovery of new fossils can change our understanding of the evolution of species.

Limited Scope

Scientific theories are often limited in scope and only explain specific phenomena. For example, Newton’s laws of motion do not apply when objects move at speeds close to that of light.

Incomplete Information

Scientific theories are based on current knowledge, which may not be complete. As we learn more about the natural world, our understanding may change. For example, scientists used to believe that atoms were indivisible until they discovered subatomic particles.


In conclusion, while scientific theories are supported by extensive evidence and provide us with valuable insights into how the natural world works, they are not always true or complete. They can change as new evidence emerges or as our knowledge expands. Therefore, it is important to keep an open mind and be willing to revise our understanding of the natural world as new evidence emerges.