BIOL368/F11:Class Journal Week 4

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Isaiah M. Castaneda

1) Did the in-class discussion of the journal article enhance your understanding of the article? Why or why not?

Yes, it felt as if we dissected the article and examined its insides. It was discussed piece by piece and this discussion probed issues to be raised which also aided in an increased understanding. Dr. Dahlquist offered a lot of insight and also brought up topics to question that otherwise may not have arisen. By the end, it was more clear what type of inquiries could be further explored through our HIV evolution projects.

2) Have your views about what it means to do original research in biology changed as a result of discussing this article? Why or why not?

No, I don’t really recall talking about “original” research. Currently, it is my view that original research is the result of an original observation and the appropriate steps that follow afterwards. Also, I would not consider the use of someone else’s research as a foundation to be original research. From what I can gather, I would categorize the research in this article to be original because it was the 1st to apply the new technique of DNA sequencing to examine patterns in HIV progression. Also, although it did cite and mention similar studies, they did not appear to be the reason/foundation for the study from the article.

Isaiah M. Castaneda 18:58, 25 September 2011 (EDT)

Robert W. Arnold

  1. Honestly, I was a bit skeptical about how much I was going to get out of the in-class discussion. It has been my experience that with these types of activities, the teacher tends to take over control relatively early on due to lack of student interaction. This is completely understandable as most students do not enjoy participating and the professor needs to keep the conversation going. However, I really found myself to get a lot out of class on Wednesday. I really enjoyed the casual atmosphere where we were able to talk to each other about certain ideas and trends we noticed within the research that some may not have picked up on. It was nice to have a small group and that all of us were sincerely interested in the topic at hand. I liked to see other people's interpretations of the remaining figures and graphs as I saw some newer ideas I previously had not noticed.
  2. Kind of. I originally thought that the Markham article was original research that had just plucked the candidates out of the ALIVE program and then did the research. I did not know until class that Markham simply took the results of 15 and analyzed them. It showed me that original research must be done by oneself while you are the one recording the data and making observation.

Robert W Arnold 03:00, 28 September 2011 (EDT)

Samantha M. Hurndon

  1. Did the in-class discussion of the journal article enhance your understanding of the article? Why or why not?
    • Yes, very much so! I enjoyed the casual atmosphere of the journal club because it made me feel comfortable enough to ask questions. I also really liked how we went over the introduction of the article in great detail. Going over the article piece by piece with Dr. Dahlquist and other fellow students helped by reiterating certain points that I found to be a little confusing. Lastly, being an undergraduate and new to reading these scientific research papers, I feel that I tend to look over any questionable methods, results or main ideas of the paper because I am just trying to understand the general idea. By going over the figures, results and main points with other class mates, as well as Dr. Dahlquist, it helped to shine a light on many of the possible underlying issues that one may have with the way the research was conducted. Having seen this, I feel I will be more
  2. My view of original research in biology stayed the same. Original research is based on your own observation. Original research can be very tedious.

Samantha M. Hurndon 22:07, 26 September 2011 (EDT)

Chris Rhodes

  1. Yes, although this was a scientific article and not really open to too much interpretation I found that the discussion of article opened up a lot of questions and concerns that I hadn't considered when I read through it on my own. A lot of interesting points were made about topics such as insufficient sample sizes and time points, arbitrary subject clustering, and the lack of moral considerations in the presentation of the data. Though I feel that I understood all the data and conclusions that were being stated in the article, more than anything the discussion opened my eyes to the deeper issues of bioethics in this particular study.
  2. I was always pretty familiar with the concept of original scientific research but one thing I found interesting about this particular study is that in many ways it both was and wasn't a very original study. The concept of the study itself is actually more of a copy or redo of older experiments as it says itself it attempts to follow up the research and data presented by previous scientific papers and address questions that the team believes went unanswered by the previous experiments. This is where the study become an original work, although they were modeling their experiment after previous studies this team made significant alterations to their protocols such as increased subject pools, greater numbers of time points, and the use of genetic sequence data to provide new insights. In this way, though the experiment is based off of previous studies it becomes it's own unique and relevant study offering new data and new perspectives to the field.

Chris H. Rhodes 16:45, 27 September 2011 (EDT)

Nicolette Harmon

  1. Yes, the in-class discussion of the article enhanced my understanding of the paper. Since it was an open dialogue, a lot of things I had not considered about the study were brought up and made me think more in depth about this article. It was also helpful to hear other people summarize parts of the article that I had trouble understanding, more specifically some of the data and what conclusions were drawn based on the information presented.
  2. No, I would say my views of original research in biology are the same. Original research is based off of an original observation that you have, not something that someone else has observed. It's not original research if you come up with a different version of a study that was done by someone else, you may be adding original factors into an experiment to make it different but the study itself is not original.

Nicolette S. Harmon 20:59, 27 September 2011 (EDT)

Zeb Russo

  1. The in class discussion helped me understand the figures much better than I had originally. This also opened up new avenues for questions for week four and five.
  2. My views have not changed. Original research is research that is done that is not based off of pre-existing published work, which allows you to discover new and exciting theorems and hypothesis that no one has bothered to ask before, let alone answer.

Zeb Russo 00:40, 28 September 2011 (EDT)