This week you will play the role of a researcher for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the federal agency that seeks to protect and increase the health of U.S. citizens. Your research on various infectious diseases is published in CDC reports, such as the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/weekcvol.html), and in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases (http://cdc.gov/ncidod/EID/index.htm).
You walk a fine line as a researcher for the CDC--not wanting to sound the alarm too soon on a seemingly controllable disease but also not wanting to keep quiet about the next possible major outbreak that could kill thousands of people. You know you have to stay focused in your research, since a superbug could evolve and infect at any time. You have a healthy fear and respect for the forces of selection in these organisms.
An infectious disease you had reported on within the last year seems to be getting worse. In fact, you think it is time to sound the alarm.
- In the weekly report or journal above, find an article about an infectious disease that has been published in the past year. The disease you pick should have a common or scientific name that begins with the same letter as one of your names (e.g. John J. Schmidt could select an article on Japanese Encephalitis). If there are NONE, you may choose a different infectious disease. Learn about the disease using one or more articles on these sites, the A-Z Index on the CDC homepage (http://www.cdc.gov/), and web searches.
- Precede your report by identifying the article, including the title and date (you should have a full citation at the end of your report as well).
- You must compose a press release/report to send to the administrators at the CDC explaining the dangers of this particular disease, in hopes that they will release this report to the general public. You will draw on your knowledge of natural selection and on your past research to convince your readers of the dangers; and you should end with recommendations on controlling the spread of this disease, along with the research you will continue doing to answer ongoing mysteries about this organism/disease. NOTE: There are articles on the CDC site about non-infectious diseases and other health issues. Be sure you're selecting an infectious disease.
Your report should be between 400 and 500 words long.
Remember, cutting and pasting from another website, without quotes or citation, is PLAGIARISM -- so is using a cut-and-pasted passage and just changing a few words. Plagiarism is a serious form of academic misconduct. If you have any questions about whether your work constitutes plagiarism, please visit the resources at week 1's plagiarism assignment, or ask your instructor.
You can view a sample assignment here.
Use D2L's spell checker (or the one on your word processor software, which will give you a word count as well). Proofread it
yourself too, because spell checkers don't catch everything. When you are satisfied,
post your completed assignment in the Digging Deeper forum for this week
at the D2L discussion board.
Respond to the Digging Deeper posts of at least two other students. (If you
are the first or second person to post, you will have to check back later to
complete this part of the assignment).
- Just as you spell checked and proofread your original post, you should spell check and proofread your responses as well.
- Respond to posts with 0 responses first; once every post has at least
one response, you are free to choose any post to respond to.
- When you respond, please use the name of the student you are responding
to. That is, say "Hi Trudy" or "Hi Paul" so that you can
get used to the names of the people in class. (You can find a list of "real"
names and preferred names at D2L).
- In your response, be sure you mention something specific that the writer
did well. Also, specifically address anything you find that seems incorrect
to you (phrased in a constructive way -- use the same language you would want
someone else to use in telling you something you did wrong). You may wish
to argue with (or critique) what the student wrote, request supporting evidence,
evaluate the student's argument, add new information, make a factual correction,
or explain why you agree. At a minimum this response should be at least 50
words, and 50-100 is preferable. Check out this page for more on the topic of good and bad responses.
After you have posted your assignment AND responded to two other students,
go to Desire2Learn and complete the Gradebook
Declaration for this week's Digging Deeper assignment. (Your Gradebook Declaration
is subject to the Honor Code.)
Here is the text of the Desire2Learn Gradebook Declaration:
(8 points) I have posted my spell-checked, proofread Digging Deeper assignment
at D2L. My assignment contains all the components listed in the assignment
(2 points) I have responded constructively to the posts of at least two
other students (1 point per response; 50-100 words for each).
[Assignment by Mark Walvoord]
Contemporary Issues in Biology -- BIOL 1003
Mariëlle H. Hoefnagels, Ph.D. © 2004-2012.
biology1003 at OU dot edu (at = @, dot =.)
July 31, 2012 11:24 PM