Primary General Science Glossary

This is a general primary science glossary. For class specific glossaries please go to the specific subjects

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A detergent is a material intended to assist cleaning. The term is sometimes used to differentiate between soap and other surface-active chemical cleaning agents widely used in industry and laundering.

Dew point

The temperature at which the water vapour in the air becomes saturated and condensation begins. Dewpoint is expressed as a temperature in degrees Fahrenheit or Celsius.


Dextrin is obtained by hydrolysis of starch. It is a tasteless, odourless gummy substance that is often used as a thickening agent, in adhesives and in dietary supplements.


The process by which a substance moves from an area of high concentration, through a barrier or membrane, to an area of lower concentration.

Digestive system

The digestive system is made up of all the organs that help the body break down and process the food we eat.


A unit of measurement of the refractive power of a lens, which is equal to the reciprocal of the focal length measured in meters.


Displacement occurs when an object is immersed in a fluid, pushing it out of the way and taking its place.


Dissolving is a way of mixing a solid and a liquid. When a solid dissolves in a liquid it creates a solution.


Deoxyribonucleic acid is a long linear polymer found in the nucleus of a cell and formed from nucleotides and shaped like a double helix. DNA is associated with the transmission of genetic information or all living organisms and some viruses.

Dominant eye

Also known as Ocular dominance is the tendency to prefer visual input from one eye to the other. It is somewhat similar to being right or left handed. The side of the dominant eye and the dominant hand do not always match.

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