Posts

March 26, 2015

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12:24 PM | Why am I running?
I’m returning from a little blogging hiatus (that ran a bit longer than intended). Here’s a photo from one of the reasons for the disruption. Last month, Dr. 24Hours and I took a trip to Spain. It was supposed to be … Continue reading →
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11:55 AM | Ephemeral art
It’s a difficult time of year for many people: Instructors are looking at how many lectures are left before final exams, and starting to panic about how much material hasn’t yet been covered! We are planning field seasons, applying for research permits, juggling meetings, and starting to think about how the summer’s work-life balance will […]
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11:12 AM | Jupiter is my shepherd that I shall not want
Our Solar System is just plain odd compared to other star systems across our galaxy. Once again the finger of blame points towards the gas giant Jupiter as the simulations in this paper show.
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10:28 AM | Heads up: You will need a visa to travel to #Evol2015 in Brazil!
Just as a heads up: if you are planning on traveling to the Evolution 2015 meeting in Brazil, you need a visa, and it takes a month to get one. More info is here. And, via twitter, Emilio Bruna recommends … Continue reading →

March 25, 2015

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8:53 PM | A New Top Dog in North Carolina
Coyotes - newcomers to North Carolina - may fill the role wolves once did.
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8:01 PM | "Our state’s water management is complex, but the technology and expertise exist to handle this..."
“Our state’s water management is complex, but the technology and expertise exist to handle this harrowing future. It will require major changes in policy and infrastructure that could take decades to identify and act upon. Today, not tomorrow, is the time to begin.” - UC Irvine’s Jay Famiglietti, California has about one year of water stored. Will you ration now?
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6:24 PM | What if a High School Diploma Guaranteed a Highly Paid Job?
WACO, Texas — At first glance, there’s nothing revolutionary about the Greater Waco Advanced Manufacturing Academy, a vocational school opened in 2013 to serve students in and around this central Texas city. The machines are fancy and gleaming, but the students here learn skills for the sorts of jobs that fueled America’s economy last century: welding, manufacturing, building homes. Around Waco, though, those jobs are still heavily in demand. And the academy offers a unique […]
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3:01 PM | A 'Promising' Way to Help Low-Income Students To and Through College
Maryville College, Photo: Maryville College Why do so few low-income students go to college? Is it simply because there is not enough federal financial aid available? Or are there other factors at play? These are vital questions to answer considering that the federal government spends about $35 billion a year on the Pell Grant program, which annually provides low-income students up to $5,730 each to help pay for college. Despite the government’s huge investment in the program, the […]
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2:51 PM | Tools That Use Student Data Show Promise, but Concerns About Student Privacy Remain Hotly Debated
On Monday, two Representatives, one a Democrat, the other a Republican, were putting final touches on a proposed new Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act, thus joining the White House in efforts to update federal data privacy law. Almost immediately after a draft of the legislation began to circulate Monday, some people said it did not alleviate all of the concerns. Generally speaking, the proposal would limit the ability of companies to tailor marketing or advertisements to students […]
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2:21 PM | Let’s talk about Science — Scopus Young Researchers’ Award for science communication
Albert Einstein once famously claimed that “you don’t really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother.” Living this ethos, a new breed of fresh-faced, tech-savvy researchers are on a mission to break down the barriers and bring science to the masses. Communication is forming a bigger part of the role of researchers, […]
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2:16 PM | OYM70: Hyperaroused with Allison Brager
  If you will be in Montreal on April 17th and are interested in NeuroEthics, check out this conference!  OYM will be there alongside some impressive young neuroethicists, and registration is free! We’re elated to welcome Allison Brager (@beastlyvaulter) – post doc, blogger, cross fit athlete and book author extraordinaire – to the guest mic ...read more The post OYM70: Hyperaroused with Allison Brager appeared first on On Your Mind Podcast.
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2:00 PM | Publish first, get funding later
Getting a new research grant is hard. You have to write a proposal about things you haven’t even done yet, and convince a panel that your work is important and likely to succeed. And because you haven’t done the work yet (because you need grant money first) you don’t have published articles to support your [...]
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12:40 PM | Rollercoaster 24 Hours.
The last day has been a real series of ups and downs. Well, a lot of ups yesterday and a big down this morning. Yesterday, I received notice that I won a small grant to do my hospital simulation research. It will have enough money to pay a student intern and attend a conference. I’m […]
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12:02 PM | Reminiscing On my Travels
I am often asked, what do College Masters do? Some people seem to think it is similar to being Warden of a Hall of Residence (i.e. sorting out broken light bulbs or disputes between neighbouring students), but it isn’t like … Continue reading →
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12:00 PM | The science education crisis needs a focus on K-6 classrooms
By my counting, we have three kinds of science education crises in the USA. A ridiculously low degree of scientific literacy across all socioeconomic segments. People are readily duped by irrational arguments about food safety, infectious disease prevention, the changing climate and the origin of species. (Is this a new problem? That’s debatable. Is it…
Editor's Pick
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11:04 AM | Ecologists think general ecology journals only want “realistic” theory. And they think that’s bad.
Last week I polled readers on whether they shared my impression that general ecology journals only want to publish “realistic” theory, meaning theories tightly linked to data. I also asked readers if they thought general ecology journals should only publish … Continue reading →
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5:23 AM | Amid March Madness, Americans Express Concern About College Sports Spending
Sixteen men's basketball teams are still alive in the N.C.A.A. March Madness tournament, including No. 7 Wichita State which knocked off No. 2 Kansas over the weekend. Today March Madness brings to mind more than big upsets and broken brackets, though. The multi-billion-dollar college sports industry is increasingly answering questions about academic standards, player safety and growing inequities between coaches and athletes.With tuition and fees on the rise, a poll from Monmouth University […]
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4:16 AM | Moving Young Learners Forward
Last month, Conor Williams and I wrote a series of posts on how young learners, PreK-3rd grade, could be better supported in a newly reauthorized Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), also known as No Child Left Behind. An ESEA reauthorization is eight years overdue. No Child Left Behind waivers are the temporary law of the land, and Congress is attempting to find common ground in a mostly partisan process. Over the past several years, interest in pre-K and other early […]

March 24, 2015

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10:57 PM | The First Star Clusters
The first stars may have formed in clusters, rather than in isolation as previously thought. What would these clusters look like?
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9:33 PM | The interesting breakthroughs in memory, pain and agingAlso be...
The interesting breakthroughs in memory, pain and agingAlso be sure to check out an interactive look through Elizabeth Blackburn’s lab at UCSF here.
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9:20 PM | In which life imitates science – number 264
A scientist is never off-duty, even in a fabulous Michelin-starred restaurant on Charlotte Street. I think pretty much anyone with a cell biology background would have seen what I saw in this rhubarb confection: But alas, my immediate dining companions … Continue reading →
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6:41 PM | The Age of Plastics
Aberdeen University Marine Society’s President, Christina Nikolova, talks about plastic pollution in the oceans and offers some advice to reduce your plastic footprint. Today’s society is dependent on two things — oil and plastic. In fact, most of the plastic is made of oil. We can hardly imagine life without the either. Just look around…
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6:00 PM | This is not just a post about Instagram
Early this year the Australian Prime Minister, who was under a bit of pressure about a questionable decision at the time, dismissed social media as ‘electronic graffiti’. People in my networks were outraged and, of course, took to social media to express their outrage. For a few days feelings were high, which resulted in a […]
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5:47 PM | Are you practicing safe science?
Five weeks ago, I sliced through both tendons in left pinky. I was just about to start working in the lab, training my PhD student on the initial processing of a peat column from our Falkland Islands trip in December. We had bought a large serrated kitchen knife specifically to slice through 1 ft-square […]
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5:20 PM | Congratulations to our March Advisor of the Month – Huiqin Gao
Many congratulations and thanks to Huiqin Gao, our March Advisor of the Month. Huiqin obtained her Bachelor’s degree at School of Information Management at Wuhan University (China), and is now a Master’s candidate majoring in Information Science in the same school. As well as studying, Huiqin is also the President of  the Information Literacy Association where she […]
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4:55 PM | Page View Spikes on Research Articles
For those that know me as a biologist it might perhaps surprise you to know that my most cited publication so far is on Open Access and Altmetrics (published in April 2013, 25 cites and counting…) — nothing to do with biology per se! So I took great interest in this new publication: Wang, X., Liu, C., … Read more →
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2:24 PM | How Common Core Serves White Folks a Sliver of the Black Experience
In this Feb. 12, 2015 photo, Marquez Allen, age 12, reads test questions on a laptop computer during in a trial run of a new state assessment test at Annapolis Middle School in Annapolis, Md. The new test, which is scheduled to go into use March 2, 2015, is linked to the Common Core standards, which Maryland adopted in 2010 under the federal No Child Left Behind law, and serves as criteria for students in math and reading. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky The sky hasn’t fallen and the […]
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10:56 AM | Photonics has a new website!
After a bit of agonizing over style and how to actually accomplish it, our group now has a new website. It is still under construction but you can probably get a sense of the renewed vigor of the new website. You can get up-to-date information about the group, our research as well as our gimmicks. […]
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10:51 AM | Communicating about lab finances
As I talked about in yesterday’s post, I’ve been thinking a lot about lab finances lately. For the most part, I’ve done this on my own, staring into what sometimes feels like an abyss of spreadsheets in my office. A … Continue reading →

March 23, 2015

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11:37 PM | The Radial Velocity Method: Current and Future Prospects
Much of what we know today about exoplanets is due to the success of the radial velocity method. Where does it stand now? What is its future?
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