ASM events
This conference is managed by the American Society for Microbiology

Reading Reflections

Table of contents
No headers

I would like to figure out effective approaches to introducing scientific literature to non majors/underclassmen and teaching majors how to read scientific literature.  I specifically would like to know if student choice and student-led discussion of the articles increase student engagement and learning.  Other questions of interest are whether students are able to deduce the role of different sections within a scientific article on their own and further whether this recognition increases their ability to read scientific literature.

My concerns fall into the ‘what works’ category.  I have rarely had introductory students read scientific literature.  I have spent time trying to find articles that would be ‘easy’ to read and generally abandoned the effort even before starting the course.  I think that they may be less interested and thus less willing to put in the extra effort to understand the unfamiliar.  Allowing them to choose something of individual interest may encourage them to overcome the motivation hindrance. 

Although I have students in my upper level classes read scientific literature I need to think through how to do it better.  The students at this level to some degree are likely doing a lot of the learning themselves as alluded to in the Bassman article.  The upperclassmen are generally majors and thus have background vocabulary and basic science knowledge and are likely navigating using skills already obtained from formal and informal science and non-science work.  I would like to plan an approach with some rationale that works for my different student populations.  So similar to Linkon from the Hutchins article I am also interested in what works for different levels of students since the students have different levels of interest, motivation and knowledge.

Finally, I like the idea of the students being involved in the project as more than just “objects” from the Hutchins paper.  I think it is of value to them to think about how they learn for both themselves and as contributors to other learners.  This type of research is very new to me and in some ways seems undoable since there is no real control group and so I guess my scientific eye is trying to navigate through how one really designs a project.  I have been reading and learning more about this area and am growing in understanding how to navigate a necessarily different approach to research.  I am trying to step out of the personal reflective mode that has been plagued with what really is my rationale for gauging whether something worked.  I would like a more systematic approach and agree that non-education faculty are probably less likely to know how to do this as suggested by Mettetal.  I look forward to this opportunity to better figure out how to build in analysis of changes to the changes themselves in order to better serve my students. 

Tag page
You must login to post a comment.