Project 1 - Defining Moments
For this project you may work in a group of at most three people and
turn in one per group, or you may work alone.
Sometimes when we consult books and journals, and rethink a topic
using ideas from other sources to help us, we become even more interested
in the topic. Other times we realize that the topic is not as interesting
as we initially thought.
Choose one of your group member's topics from the
Library Research Part 1 reflection.
Create an annotated bibliography with the annotations in
your group members' own words
- a summary of the material
- reasons for its inclusion
- an evaluation of the source, including how current it is
- a discussion of the credibility of the author(s)
(empirical in presenting the thesis, good credentials, biased in any way)?
The bibliography and annotations must be in a scholarly and
consistent format and style of writing,
and you will be graded on the depth and clarity of your annotations.
Include six, seven, or eight total sources, with
- at least two sources that are found in the
library but not online
- at least two scholarly journal articles
- at least two web pages
- at least one controversial source where you summarize the controversy.
Since you will need to conduct additional research, such
as looking up the credentials of the author, searching for
other opinions on your sources, etc, list any other references
within your annotations.
Here is a sample annotation, although your formatting and style may
 Fricker, Lloyd. Cloning of the Zucchini Opiate Receptor (2001).
Annals of Improbable Research. Vol 7. Issue 5. Sep/Oct. pp. 4-7.
Also available on the following website:
This article summarizes a zucchini cloning experiment and examines
pain and jumping reflexes. Materials
and methods, results and discussion, acknowledgments, and cited literature
- Reasons for its inclusion:
The idea of cloning zucchini seemed interesting and it relates to the
human cloning topic. In addition, after reading the article and conducting
additional research on it, I thought it would provide some interesting
points as a model for your projects.
- Evaluation of the source, including how current it is:
The Annals of Improbable Research (AIR) is a journal/magazine
that appears in print and online. AIR publishes genuine research that
has already appeared in
scientific journals, original research, and "some concoctions"
[Marc Abrahams, editor. Improbable Research.
Website: http://improbable.com/about/]. It is not a scholarly journal.
For this issue, the editors remark that:
The features marked with a star (*) are based entirely on material taken straight from standard research (and other Official and Therefore Always
Correct) literature. Many of the other articles are genuine, too, but we
don't know which ones
[Marc Abrahams, editor. Annals of Improbable Research
Table of Contents for Volume 7, Issue 5, Sep/Oct 2001. Website:
Hence this is a non-scholarly journal/magazine source, with
some works of fiction in addition to series scientific articles.
This article dates to 2001, so it seems relatively current,
but the acknowledgments section of the journal article indicates that
the paper was originally presented as a
poster at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in 1985.
- Discussion of the credibility of the author(s)
(empirical in presenting the thesis, good credentials, biased in any way):
The author is credible.
Dr. Fricker is a professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine
in the departments of molecular pharmacology and neuroscience
[Einstein Faculty Profile for Lloyd D. Fricker, Ph.D. (2007).
PubMed database search shows 117 scholarly articles, but does not
include this article. The author
is empirical in presenting the experiment, and if it were not for
the discussion of the jumping reflex of Mr. Potato Head and other
semi-humorous phrases, discussions and pictures, then
I would have thought that it was a serious scientific article.
However, the author lists the motivation for undertaking
the cloning in the introduction to the article, and the logic is faulty:
1) Opiate receptors are important.
2) Cloning things is important.
3) Therefore, cloning the opiate receptor must be very important.
- At least one controversial source:
The author uses humor to highlight
the controveries of human cloning and painful testing among animals,
but I would not use this article for my controversial source.
Instead, a source like Clonaid
would make for a much better controversial source, since it is
Founded by a gentleman (or, perhaps more accurately, an
entity) named Rael, who is head of the Raelian religion, which is
based in Montreal, and which discovered that aliens from outer
space brought DNA to the earth... this remarkable
organization is offering to fund anyone who will seriously engage
in human cloning
on the website