ScientificWritingAssnStudentsFall09 - Scientific Writing...

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Scientific Writing Assignment (10 pts.) BSCI106 – Fall 2009 Name: __________________________, Date: ___________________, TA: __________________ "I pledge on my honor that I have not given or received any unauthorized assistance on this assignment/examination." Signature: ____________________________________________ Your scientific writing assignment will be to critique a scientific “paper.” Actually, although based on a real scientific paper, this paper is a re-write that illustrates some of the common problems we see in submitted lab reports. Here is what you need to do. Your assignment is to critique the attached paper and to review the paper for plagiarism and appropriate use/citation of literature. Between now and the next lab review that paper and make editorial remarks reflecting the problems, or virtues, you find. You will submit this handout, with editorial comments, at the BEGINNING of lab next week. During the Scientific Writing lab you will form groups and discuss and present your collective opinions on one of the paper sections. While other groups are presenting their section, take notes on this handout to help you when you write your lab report. “But … I’ve never written a scientific paper. How am I supposed to know what’s wrong with this one?” First, read it over. Does is make sense? Is the content appropriate? Are the ideas presented in a logical order? Are the ideas supported by the data, references, and/or by sound and clear reasoning? Second, scientific literature typically follows a specific format. This makes scientific papers both easier to write and easier to extract information from. A reader interested in finding information about methods, or conclusions, knows exactly where to find it. You have a lot of information on the format of a scientific paper, as indicated below: Lab Report Style Guide: At the end of the lab manual is a nice synopsis of what belongs where in a scientific paper. Lab Report Resource Center: On the Lab Information link on the course web site we have a site devoted to Lab Report writing. It includes a section-by-section description of the main components of each section, examples, and the do’s and don’ts of writing a lab report. You should consult this while doing the assignment. To help you evaluate the appropriateness of the paper contents, here’s some background on the study. Exposure to testosterone during fetal development appears to influence a variety of characteristics, including the relative lengths of the 2 nd finger (the one you point with) and the 4 th (ring) finger. Higher exposure to testosterone during fetal development is associated with short 2 nd fingers relative to 4 th fingers (a low 2D:4D ratio, D stands for digit). Because 2D:4D is so easy to measure and it indicates levels of fetal testosterone exposure, many researchers have sought correlations between 2D:4D and other characteristics to see what else fetal testosterone exposure might influence. This study investigates the relationship between 2D:4D and female assessments of male attractiveness. The authors don’t actually expect females to be attracted to males based on the relative lengths of their fingers, but
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This note was uploaded on 10/05/2009 for the course BSCI 106 taught by Professor Porter during the Fall '08 term at Maryland.

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ScientificWritingAssnStudentsFall09 - Scientific Writing...

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