In the spirit of the weblogs of old, I’m going to start posting a few useful things I’ve read. No theme, no big insights – just a log of what I’ve read.
I teach our introduction to research course in Environmental Science (a.k.a. “Environmental Research Seminar” or “Junior Seminar”), and usually incorporate a few modules about responsible research conduct. I just found out about what’s often called “helicopter research” or “parachute research”, which is the opposite of responsible. I may include one or more of these readings to introduce research ethics and stakeholder involvement:
- Gatta, M. (n.d.). Scientists are producing data without sharing it with people who actually need it. Retrieved May 27, 2020, from https://massivesci.com/articles/papers-conservation-science-communication-community-outreach/
- van Groenigen, J. W., & Stoof, C. R. (2020). Helicopter research in soil science: A discussion. Geoderma, 114418. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.geoderma.2020.114418
- Rochmyaningsih, D. (2018). Did a study of Indonesian people who spend most of their days under water violate ethical rules? Science. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aau8972
- Helicopter research and data collection in the global South by AfriCan Geopardy [podcast]. (n.d.). Retrieved May 27, 2020, from https://anchor.fm/african-geopardy/episodes/Helicopter-research-and-data-collection-in-the-global-South-e56klh
I’m gearing up to teach a research experience course in the fall, and am considering teaching a pre-class unit on equity and fieldwork. I’d love students to read these two articles with what appear at first glance to be contrasting conclusions:
- Giles, S., Jackson, C., & Stephen, N. (2020). Barriers to fieldwork in undergraduate geoscience degrees. Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, 1(2), 77–78. https://doi.org/10.1038/s43017-020-0022-5
- McNulty, J. (n.d.). Field courses boost STEM diversity, study reveals. Retrieved May 27, 2020, from https://news.ucsc.edu/2020/05/beltran-diversity.html [Note: this is a press release, not the original study, which doesn’t seem to be available from the journal yet.]
A couple of threads on Twitter with lessons learned from this remote/online term:
- What is full participation? “Robust asynchronous learning requires that students can engage (as full participants) no matter how and when they are available. If we want to provide access to students who can’t be present synchronously, making them flies on the wall after the fact isn’t enough.” @Jessifer
- What are we learning so far (about remote learning)? @WardHydro
- Faculty should listen to URM student perspectives (and ask students what they think!) @Napaaqtuk
From my own students: I asked them to think about what was working in their classes. Flexibility was number one – faculty help most when they are most flexible and responsive. Also, checking in, allowing students to plan ahead, incorporating discussion boards in an authentic way, and facilitating group work.
Also: did I post this already? The Teaching Practices of Award-Winning Online Faculty (paywall) echoes a number of these sentiments.
- Assign roles in lab groups to improve equity: Quinn, K. N., Kelley, M. M., McGill, K. L., Smith, E. M., Whipps, Z., & Holmes, N. G. (2020). Group roles in unstructured labs show inequitable gender divide. ArXiv:2005.07670 [Physics]. Retrieved from http://arxiv.org/abs/2005.07670
- The idea of “fixing the student” is a problem: Asai, D. J. (2020). Race Matters. Cell, 181(4), 754–757. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2020.03.044
- A whole issue of The Physics Teacher on equity (especially gender equity) in the physics classroom.
- Along similar lines, thanks to Beck Strauss (@BeckEStrauss) for turning me on to this paper about LGBT+ inclusion in physics: Ackerman, N., Atherton, T., Avalani, A. R., Berven, C. A., Laskar, T., Neunzert, A., et al. (2018). LGBT+ Inclusivity in Physics and Astronomy: A Best Practices Guide. ArXiv:1804.08406 [Astro-Ph, Physics:Physics]. Retrieved from http://arxiv.org/abs/1804.08406
- Has anyone else used this online text? I’m considering it for the fall. van der Pluijm, B. A., & Marshak, S. (2016). Processes in Structural Geology and Tectonics. Unpublished. https://doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.1.2845.9126