Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Helping undergraduate students learn about research

For the third year biophysics course BIPH3001 I helped run this semester, part of the assessment required that students select a recent research paper and prepare a presentation fo r the class, explaining the basic results and commenting on the strengths and weaknesses of the paper.

After the experience I realised two important points about this exercise:

1. Students should explicitly show how material they learnt in the rest of the course helped them understand the paper.

2. Something very valuable can/should/may happen. Undergraduates learn that just because a research paper claims to have shown something does not mean that it is true. The sooner they learn a healthy scepticism the better.


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  3. After the experience I realised two important points about this exercise:argumentative essay format