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FYS 505 - Bates STEM Scholars: Getting Started with Research

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Bates STEM Scholars Library Resources

Resources that Can Jumpstart Your STEM Dilemma Project Research:


What the eyes don't see : a story of crisis, resistance, and hope in an American city by Mona Hanna-Attisha

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Lead in the Flint Michigan Water Supply
  • Water quality / water safety
  • Public utilities in under resourced communities
  • Post discovery remediation of hazardous materials (e.g. lead in water and soil (paint), asbestos)

Potential Resources

 


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Informed consent and Individual rights
  • Differential treatment in healthcare based on race and/or gender
  • Ethics of research with human subjects
  • Patients' rights
  • Transparency in healthcare

Potential Resources

Note that this collection has a search tool that allows you to search within the transcripts.  This will be very useful.

 


Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore by Elizabeth Rush

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Sea level rise
  • Disproportionate effects of sea level rise on different communities
  • Denial about or ignorance pertaining to sea level rise and consequences of sea level rise
  • Costs of sea level rise (economic, societal, cultural, ecological, etc)
  • Solutions/Accommodations: (who gets a say? Who benefits? Who does not benefit?)
  • US vs Other countries/nations, US with Other countries/nations

Potential Resources

For example: Sea-Level Rise Adaptation and Risk Mitigation Measures for the City of Cape Town Resort


A Crack in Creation: gene editing and the unthinkable power to control evolution by Jennifer Doudna and Samuel Sternberg

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Germline “gene” editing
  • Research ethics and oversight
  • Reasonable / unreasonable expectations of “unintended consequences”
  • The role (or lack of a role) for the “non-expert” in decision making

Potential Resources

"CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing exploits the CRISPR-Cas system to modify a genome in a targeted manner. Guided by RNA, the Cas9 endonuclease breaks DNA at a target sequence. Imprecise repair of the double strand break can result in insertion or deletion mutations, while repair pathways can be engineered to introduce specific point mutations or insertions." --Nature.com


The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women by Kate Moore

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Profit vs. people: workers rights and safety
  • Group activism / labor unions
  • Right to know
  • External and independent oversight of working conditions

Potential Resources

This FANTASTIC resource was constructed and is maintained by the University of Maryland Thurgood Marshall Law Library.
In addition to sources specifically about the play, in contains citations to many other resources about "The Radium Girls".

Interview with Kate Moore by Sarah Zhang of The Atlantic (March 1, 2017)

Clean up of radium contaminated soil in Ottawa, Illinois. National Public Radio Illinois (February 1, 2018)


Should We Colonize Other Planets? by Adam Morton

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Affect(s) on future research?
  • Who's right is it to decide? (i.e. a person, a corporation, a government, a multi-governmental body, no one)
  • Unintended consequences?
  • To what purpose? (i.e. to show it can be done? for sustained human (re)settlement?)

Potential Resources

Linda Billings is an ethicist / philosopher that has written extensively on this topic.


The Overstory by Richard Powers

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Sustainable Forestry
  • Ecoterrorism
  • The Value of Old growth forests
  • Game theory and human behavior
  • The relative value of human vs. other forms of life
  • Self interest vs. self sacrifice

Potential Resources

Some of the extensive and searchable newspaper collections available at Bates:

Below are links to examples of several of the extensive and searchable newspaper collections available at Bates.

Find even more from the "Online Collections" button on the library home page:

  • Select "Online Collections", "Browse by Type", and then "News and Newspapers".

Historical Newspaper Collections:


Historical through Present Newspaper Collections:


Individual Newspapers:

Try Searching in An Article Index:

An article index is like Google Search if it only searched journal articles.  Below you will find several article indexes that should help you find your primary scientific research article.


Try Searching in a Single Journal:

If Bates has access to a specific journal, you can search within it very easily!

  1. From the Ladd Library home page, select the "CBBcat" button.
  2. Select the "Journal Title" search button.
  3. Enter the title of the journal you want to search within and click the magnifying glass.
  4. Use the resulting search box to search within the specified journal.

Penn Reading Project 2019-2020 : Weapons of Math Destruction

Penn State Libraries created an excellent guide to Cathy O'Neil's book "Weapons of Math Destruction" to support their 2019-2020 Reading Project.  There is a good chance you will find resources related to your "STEM Dilemma" there:

Penn Reading Project 2019-2020 : Weapons of Math Destruction


Chapter 3. Arms Race-Going to College

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • U.S. News and World Report's College Ranking System
  • Affects of Rankings on Colleges
    • Pressure to "Game the System"
  • Affects of Rankings on Students
    • Pressure to be accepted to the "best" possible school
    • Pressure to buy into an expensive "college prep" culture and the inability of many to do so
  • The "Flutie Effect"
  • Opaque metrics (e.g. how are various criteria weighted? Is cost factored in? Post graduation success?  How long post graduation?)
  • The use of proxies as a measure of quality

Potential Resources


Chapter 5. "Civilian Casualties: Justice in the Age of Big Data"

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Predictive Policing (i.e. Predpol) Software
    • Using historical crime type, crime location, and crime date and time to "forecast" future crime
  • Observational feedback loop (i.e. the more focus you give a particular geographic area or demographic, the more crime you "discover", resulting more attention and more "discoveries")
  • Unequal application of WMD's
  • Community policing vs. WMD policing

Potential Resources


Chapter 8. "Collateral Damage: Landing Credit"

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • e-scores / credit scores
  • proxies vs. more directly relevant descriptors
  • group generalizations vs. individual assessment

Potential Resources


Chapter 9. "No Safe Zone: Getting Insurance"

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • potentially intrusive workplace "Wellness Programs" and insurance rates
  • personal finances as a proxy for driving skills and driving history and car insurance rates

Potential Resources


Chapter 10. "The Targeted Citizen: Civic Life"

Examples of Issues Addressed

  • Potential influence of social media on political elections

Potential Resources