Fall 2007

NMSU  HONORS COLLEGE

 

Journeys of Discovery

 

 

http://www.artcyclopedia.com/feature-2001-08.html

 

 

 

The
Art of

Scientific Discovery

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.achievement.org/autodoc/photocredit/achievers/eli0-030

 

Instructor:   Dr. Elba Serrano

Ph. D.   Stanford University

Professor of Biology

Affiliate Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering.

 

Research Interests:

Neuroscience, Biophysics, Nanoscience

Office                  Jett Hall 151

Office hours:     Monday and Wednesday

        11:30 am- 1:00 pm

        and by appointment

Telephone:         646-5217

Email:                  serrano@nmsu.edu

 

COURSE DESCRIPTION

REQUIRED TEXTBOOKS  

CLASS SCHEDULE

POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

EARNING YOUR GRADE

Grade Scale

Late assignments.

Attendance.

Withdrawals

Incompletes and make-up work

Important dates:  Portfolio due Oct 9  Dec 4

OTHER:

Guidelines for class discussion

Syllabus modification

Students with disabilities 

Equity & ADA      

Xerox

Honors College

Plagiarism  

 

Portfolio:

Oct 9   Portfolio 1 due (200 pts.)

·         Submit all assignments from Sept 5 through Oct 2

·         Format: Typed, single space, with last 4 digits of NMSU ID on pages portal page of important websites)

·         Each weekly assignment should be classified by date and should be submitted separately from the assignments from other weeks.

·         Submit supporting materials (URLs, print of portal page) at the end of the required text entries for the weekly assignment.

Dec 4   Portfolio 2 due (250 pts.)

·         Submit all assignments from Oct 9 through Nov 27

·         Do no use your name, only the last 4 digits of NMSU ID

·         Format: Typed, single space, with last 4 digits of NMSU ID on pages portal page of important websites)

·         Each weekly assignment should be classified by date and should be submitted separately from the assignments from other weeks.

·         Submit supporting materials (URLs, print of portal page) at the end of the required text entries for the weekly assignment.

Course Description: art (ärt) n. Skill acquired by experience, study, or observation; the conscious use of skill and creative imagination. "The Art of Scientific Discovery" will explore how the creative process is manifested in science. We will draw on the lives and achievements of scientists to reveal scientific inquiry in action and to examine the roles of inspiration, tenacity, opportunity, adversity, and chance in scientific discovery. A minilab module "Measurement at the Nanoscale: Exploring the Invisible" will allow student participants to experience art in science and make their own unique discovery.

Class sessions emphasize student discussion and use exploratory assignments as a format for promoting conversations that develop critical thinking ability.  Participation in this course will encourage the student to ask questions about the scientific process and to develop confidence in her/his oral communication skills.

 

Required TextbooksNone.  We will use publicly available internet educational material:

 

 

 

 

 

DATE

THEME

SELECTED TOPICS

28-Aug

Introduction 

 

What is science?

What is a discovery? 

What are sources of knowledge and information and how do we determine veracity?

How is creativity nurtured?

What motivates individuals to make scientific discoveries?

What is the role of education and environment in this process?

What is the role of precedence in a discovery?

Sources

 

NMSU library

 http://lib.nmsu.edu/siteindex.shtml

Discover Magazine

http://discovermagazine.com/

NY Times

http://www.nytimes.com/pages/science/index.html

Science News

http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20070825/timeline.asp

How Stuff Works

http://science.howstuffworks.com/

American Association for Advancement of Science

http://www.aaas.org/programs/education/SciPublic/index.shtml

4-Sep

The Hunt for Discoveries

Living World

Health and Medicine

 

Portfolio entries:

1.      What are sources of knowledge and information and how do we determine veracity?(1-2 paragraphs)

2.      Browse the internet and bring 1-2 articles to class on the week’s topic that capture your interest. 

 

Suggested Links:

Discover Magazine

http://discovermagazine.com/

 

11-Sep

The Hunt for Discoveries

Space

Environment

 

Portfolio entries:

1.      What is of greater interest to you, discoveries about planet earth or discoveries about our galaxy? Why? (1-2 paragraphs)

2.      What is SETI? (1-2 paragraphs)

3.      What summer programs are available for undergraduate students at NASA?

4.      Browse the internet and bring 1-2 articles to class on the week’s topic that capture your interest.  

 

Suggested Links:

Discover Magazine

http://discovermagazine.com/

USGS

http://www.usgs.gov/themes/environ.html 

NASA

http://www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/postsecondary/internet/index.html

Earth Observatory (you can build an animation here)

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Observatory/datasets.html

18-Sep

Profile of a Scientist

Nobel Laureates in Medicine & Physiology  http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/lists/all/

 

Portfolio entries:

1.  Read the autobiographies of Dr. Sydney Brenner and Dr. Barbara McClintock.

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/2002/brenner-autobio.html

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/1983/mcclintock-autobio.html

3.  Read the following pages of their speeches

pages 1-6

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/1983/mcclintock-lecture.pdf

pages 1-4

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/2002/brenner-lecture.pdf

3. Write a paragraph for Dr. Brenner and one for Dr. McClintock  in response to this question:  What factors (inspiration, tenacity, opportunity, adversity, chance, etc.) have played a role in their discoveries? 

4. Browse the Nobel Laureates page for Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/

5. Print the biographies of TWO Nobel Laureates in Medicine whose biographies you find intriguing or inspiring. Come prepared to tell the class why you found them so. (1-2 paragraphs)

25-Sep

Profile of a Mathematician

The 115 Interview

Dr. Alan Garfinkel, Professor of Medicine and Physiological Sciences, UCLA

http://heartlab.mednet.ucla.edu/agarfinkel.htm

 

Portfolio entries:

Please prepare your interview article in this simple format:  http://central.hcrhs.k12.nj.us/journ2/discuss/msgReader$90

       Q.      XXXX

       A.       XXXX

 

You will most likely remember your own questions, but not those of others.  Do not worry about this, just state "Matt's question" or "Darko's question" under Q, then transcribe what you wrote as the Answer.  Write your interview soon before you forget what was said.  We will retrieve the questions in the next class.

 

The Garfinkel interview should be submitted with your Portfolio on Oct 9.

 

Interview Hints:

The indicator of a productive interview lies in the ability of the questions to elicit thoughtful and sometimes unexpected responses from the interviewee.  For this to occur, the questions must probe deeply and the interviewers must be good listeners.  This first interview had all these characteristics.

http://webquest.sdsu.edu/processguides/interviewing.html

2-Oct

The Hunt for Discoveries

Mind and Brain

Physics and Math

 

Portfolio entries:

1.     Visit the Society for Neuroscience web site.  What is the purpose of the society? http://www.sfn.org/  (1-2 paragraphs) 

2.     Visit SFN  Brain Briefings and identify two topics of interest to you.  Write a brief paragraph about each topic  and come prepared to discuss these in class.

http://www.sfn.org/index.cfm?pagename=brainBriefings_main&section=publications  

3.     What are the origins of the word physics and what is encompassed by the study of physics? (1-2 paragraphs)

4.     Summarize the key points of two biographies and one discovery on this website that interest you (1 written paragraph each). Come prepared to explain what you found remarkable (or not) about your selected topics.

Great discoveries in  20th century physics: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aso/databank/physastro.html

5.     Who was Nicola Tesla? What are some his accomplishments? What was his opinion on eugenics? http://www.pbs.org/tesla/res/res_art01.html (1-2 paragraphs)

6.     What is mathematics? Is mathematics a science? Is mathematics an art? Is there beauty in mathematics? Why or why not? (1-2 paragraphs)

7.     What is chaos theory? What are fractals? Bring an example of fractal art to class. (1-2 paragraphs) 

8.     What is the relationship between the brain, math and physics? (1-2 paragraphs)

 

9-Oct

Promoting Student Success:

Academic  Opportunities

 

Portfolio 1 due

Dr. William Eamon, Regents Professor of History

Dean of the Honors College

http://honors.nmsu.edu/weamon/

 

Portfolio entries:

1.      Prepare 5 interview questions for Professor Stevens. At least 1 should address the process of discovery in art.

2.      Identify two Honors College Scholarships or  two Honors courses that interest you for the future

16-Oct

Profile of an Artist

The 115 Interview

 

 

MEET AT 3:45 PM IN HONORS COLLEGE PARKING LOT

 

Rachel Stevens, Professor of Art, NMSU

http://artdepartment.nmsu.edu/people/stevens.htm

http://artdepartment.nmsu.edu/faculty/stevens/index.html

 

MEET AT 3:45 PM IN HONORS COLLEGE PARKING LOT

 

Portfolio entries:

Please prepare your interview article in this simple format:  http://central.hcrhs.k12.nj.us/journ2/discuss/msgReader$90

       Q.      XXXX

       A.       XXXX

23-Oct

Profile of a Scientist

 

Ernest Everett Just, 1883-1941

Fabian Garcia, 1871 – 1948

Rosa Minoka Hill, 1875 – 1952

Emilie du Chatelet 1706-1749

 

 

   

 

Portfolio entries:

1.      Who were Ernest Everett Just, Fabian Garcia, Rosa Minoka Hill, and Emilie du Chatelet? 

2.      What is the purpose of the JustGarciaHill website? http://justgarciahill.org/jghdocs/webabout.asp   Choose three biographies of interest to you that are posted on the website and explain why they caught your attention.

3.      Who was Percy Julian and what did he discover?

30-Oct

Hot Topics: 21st century

 

Resources. These sites will help you to prepare your portfolio entries.

http://www.nano.gov/html/res/pdf/Nanotechnology_BigThingsfromaTinyWorld.pdf

http://www.nano.gov/html/about/home_about.html (see menu frame on the left)

http://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/reu_search.cfm

http://stemcells.nih.gov/info/basics/

http://dels.nas.edu/dels/rpt_briefs/Understanding_Stem_Cells.pdf

 

Nanoscience: Exploring the Invisible

Portfolio entries

1.      What is the nanoscale? What are nanoscience and nanotechnology and what are some anticipated applications and potential benefits of research in these fields??

2.      What is the National Nanotechnology Initiative and what are its goals? What is the federal NNI budget requested for 2008? What are top three agencies for funding and how much is requested for them for fiscal year 2008?

3.      Find five REU programs that support undergraduate summer internships in nanoscience or nanotechnology

 

Stem Cells: Promise or Hype?

Portfolio entries

1.      What is a stem cell?

2.      What are some applications for stem cells in the treatment of disease?

3.      What are some of the ethical and legal issues surrounding their use?

6-Nov

Ethics in Science

Scientific Integrity and Ethics in Scientific Research

Portfolio entries

1.      Write one paragraph about each of the two case studies distributed in class Oct 9.

2.      What is the NIH Office of Research Integrity and what are the 9 areas of Responsible Conduct in Research (RCR) training?

3.      What was unit 731? What was Operation Whitecoat? Who was Josef Mengele?

4.      We will view a film on The Lynchburg Colony in class. Prepare 1-2 paragraphs that summarize your thoughts after seeing the film? What new information, if any, was presented in the film? What ethical concerns are raised by the film?

5.     Prepare interview questions for Dr. Sorger

 

13-Nov

Discovery Lab

 

Exploring the Invisible

With Dr.  Jacob Urquidi, Professor of Physics, NMSU, Gardiner Hall

http://www.physics.nmsu.edu/Physics/people/faculty/urquidi/jurquidi.html

 

Portfolio entries:

1.      What is STM? How is it used in nanoscience research? Who received the Nobel Prize for STM?

2.      Submit a 1-2 page summary of what you learned during your visit that includes the following:

  • What questions were raised by your visit to the laboratory?
  • What, if anything, did you discover about the research process?
  • What type of sample would you like to image with STM and why?

20-Nov

Thanksgiving

BREAK

27-Nov

 

Profile of a Scientist

The 115 Interview

(Video conference)

 

ROOM CHANGE FOR VIDEO CONFERENCE TO  HARVARD MEDICAL SCHOOL

MEET AT 4pm at Gerald Thomas Hall room 185 (GT is by the pond on Espina)

Bring 5 questions for Dr. Sorger. Please be punctual

 

Dr. Peter Sorger, Professor of Systems Biology, Harvard University

http://sysbio.med.harvard.edu/faculty/sorger/

http://cdp.mit.edu/research_scientists/scientists/peter_sorger/

 

Portfolio entries:

Please prepare your interview article in this simple format:

 http://central.hcrhs.k12.nj.us/journ2/discuss/msgReader$90

       Q.      XXXX

       A.       XXXX

4-Dec

Controversy and Scientific Discovery

 Portfolio 2 due

Distribute take-home exam

OPEN DISCUSSION/COURSE SUMMARY

 

FINALS WEEK

FINAL EXAM

3:30 – 4:30 pm Tuesday December 11

Submit take home exam

Open book discussion

 

 

 

POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

 

Earning your grade:

 

In class participation: (450 pts) Based on your completion of assignments for class and contribution to class discussion.

 

Portfolio assignment: (450 pts) Students will be asked to prepare a portfolio comprised of the class assignments and several short essays and class notes.  Details of the portfolio entries will be posted on the course web page..

              Portfolio due dates:  Oct 9 and  Dec 4

 

Final Exam (100 points). Take home essay.

Grade Scale (1000 pts):

        A 90-100 %

        B 80-89 %

        C 70-79 %

        D 60-69 %

        F < 60 %

        S (Satisfactory) requires a B-

        Note: The grade scale may be curved at the end of the semester at the discretion of the instructor.

Late assignments. 10% of the total points will be deducted for each week the assignment is late. Assignments will not be accepted if handed in more than 2 weeks after the due date.

Attendance: Discussion and class preparation are essential components of this class, therefore, students are expected to attend all classes except for a documented university business, medical emergency etc.  Documentation must be submitted if you are absent and it is best to inform the instructor in advance if possible if you will need to miss class.    50 points will be deducted from your overall points for each unexcused absence.

S/U Option: Students must meet all requirements of the course.  A grade of B- is required to receive an S in an Honors course.

Withdrawals: It is your responsibility to withdraw from the course. The instructor will not automatically drop you from the course for failure to attend class or to complete exams or assignments.

Incompletes, academic misconduct and make-up work:  Incompletes will be given only if a student has passed the first half of the course (assignments through October 16) and is precluded from completing the course by a documented illness or family crisis.  Make-ups of assignments for excused absences must be discussed with the instructor within one week of the due date of the assignment. There are no provisions for extra credit work.  Academic misconduct, shall be subject to disciplinary action. 

Important dates:

 

    Oct 9            Portfolio  1                                            200 pts

    Dec 4           Portfolio  2                                            250 pts

    TBA              Final exam (Take home)                        100 pts

 


OTHER:

 

GUIDELINES FOR CLASS DISCUSSION: During the semester, many opinions will be voiced in the class. You may strongly disagree with some of these, or you may find them amusing. Outbursts can be misinterpreted or counterproductive to meaningful and thoughtful debate. Therefore, it is important that you exercise self-discipline and self-control, and treat all members of the class with the courtesy that you are entitled to receive in turn. The key words are: respect and courtesy. Please turn off cell phones and beepers while in class.       Thank you!

 

SYLLABUS MODIFICATION: The instructor reserves the right to modify this syllabus during the semester as considered necessary to enhance the quality of the instruction, to meet the needs of students in the class and to achieve course objectives. Any changes to the syllabus [or to the course schedule] will be announced in class and you are responsible for being aware of them.

 

STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES:   Additional information is available at http://www.nmsu.edu/~ssd/

  • If you have or believe you have a disability and would benefit from any accommodations, you may wish to self-identify by contacting the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office located at Corbett Center (phone: 646-6840).
  • If you have already registered, please make sure that your instructor receives a copy of the accommodation memorandum from SSD within the first two weeks of classes.  It is your responsibility to inform either your instructor or SSD representative in a timely manner if services/accommodations provided are not meeting your needs.
  • If you have a condition which may affect your ability to exit safely from the premises in an emergency or which may cause an emergency during class, you are encouraged to discuss any concerns with the instructor and/or the SSD Coordinator.

EQUITY:  Feel free to call Jerry Nevarez, Director of Institutional Equity, at 505-646-3635 with any questions you may have about NMSU's Non-Discrimination Policy and complaints of discrimination, including sexual harassment.

ADA:    Feel free to call Michael Armendariz, Coordinator of  Services for Students with Disabilities, at 505-646-6840 with any questions you may have on student issues related to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and/or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.  All medical information will be treated confidentially.

XEROX and/or BACKUP all assignments before submitting them to the instructor.

SAVE xeroxes of all graded assignments and exams from this course at least until you have received your final grade.

HONORS COMPUTER CLUSTER is available for your use

HONORS DIRECTOR:  The Honors Director is Dr. William Eamon.  His office is in the Honors building.

PLAGIARISM:  Students found guilty of plagiarism have engaged in academic misconduct and shall be subject to disciplinary action. Academic misconduct, shall be subject to disciplinary action. The penalty for plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct (as defined in the Student Code of Conduct) is failure of the course: no exceptions. The current University definition of plagiarism can be found at http://www.nmsu.edu/%7Evpsa/SCOC/misconduct.html.     It reads as follows:

 

Plagiarism is using another person’s work without acknowledgment, making it appear to be one’s own.  Any ideas, words, pictures, or other intellectual content taken from another source must be acknowledged in a citation that gives credit to the source. This is irrespective of the origin of the material, including the Internet, other students’ work, unpublished materials, or oral sources.  Intentional and unintentional instances of plagiarism are considered instances of academic misconduct. It is the responsibility of the student submitting the work in question to know, understand, and comply with this policy.If no citation is given, then borrowing any of the following * would be an example of plagiarism.:

    • An idea or opinion, even when put into one’s own words (paraphrase)
    • A few well-said words, if these are a unique insight
    • Many words, even if one changes most of them
    • Materials assembled by others, for instance quotes or a bibliography
    • An argument
    • A pattern or idea
    • Graphs, pictures, or other illustrations
    • Facts
    • All or part of an existing paper or other resource

* This list is not meant to include all possible examples of plagiarism.

 

Even with a citation, failure to put quotation marks around direct quotations also constitutes plagiarism, because it implies that the writing is your own.   Material should either be paraphrased or clearly designated as a quotation.   Note that replacing words with synonyms, changing verb tense or other minor alterations do not qualify as paraphrasing.

 

 

 

 

al Narrow"'>Materials assembled by others, for instance quotes or a bibliography
  • An argument
  • A pattern or idea
  • Graphs, pictures, or other illustrations
  • Facts
  • All or part of an existing paper or other resource
  • * This list is not meant to include all possible examples of plagiarism.

     

    Even with a citation, failure to put quotation marks around direct quotations also constitutes plagiarism, because it implies that the writing is your own.   Material should either be paraphrased or clearly designated as a quotation.   Note that replacing words with synonyms, changing verb tense or other minor alterations do not qualify as paraphrasing.