Fifteen Great Biology Papers (3) Reading and discussion of the most influential papers in the history of biology that illustrate exceptional insight and elegant reasoning.
ANTH 465H Fifteen Great Biology Papers (3)
Thousands of papers are published annually in the life sciences, but only a few have lasting impact on their field. These are usually characterized by elegant and thoughtful insight, and creative scientific thinking. For each of the fourteen weeks of the semester we will read and discuss a landmark paper of this type. The 15th paper? That will be the student's term project. The student will read one classic paper in the history of biological thought each week and discuss the paper in class. During the last half of each class in last third of the semester, the students will present the classics they have chosen for their term paper. The major topics covered in this course are: Weeks 1-4: Basic history of thought about origin and nature of variation in living organisms Weeks 5-8: Landmarks in the philosophy of science Weeks 9-12: History and development of ideas in evolutionary biology. Weeks 13-14: Foundations of 20th Century biology The objective of this course is to give students an experience with and appreciation for (1) the history and origins of science, biology in particular, (2) the nature of cogent critical thinking and expression, (3) the basis for fundamental ideas in biology today, (4) a sense of the nature of papers that had great influence on the future of the field, and (5) experience scouting, choosing, evaluating, and writing about papers of this nature. Evaluation will be based on class attendance and participation, critical thinking ability and effort as manifest in class, and a term paper (graded also to include quality of writing and research.) This course is generally related to all life science courses, and relevant to social and other sciences, philosophy, and history. This course can fulfill elective credits for Anthropology majors and minors.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.