What do teachers think is the primary purpose of homework? How much do they think parents should be involved? How do those attitudes effect student effort and achievement?
A group of researchers studying teachers in Switzerland (hey! a non-US study!) conducted a survey of 93 teachers of French as a second language. Their survey included scales [...]... Read more »
Trautwein, U., Niggli, A., Schnyder, I., & Lüdtke, O. (2009) Between-teacher differences in homework assignments and the development of students' homework effort, homework emotions, and achievement. Journal of Educational Psychology, 101(1), 176-189. DOI: 10.1037/0022-06220.127.116.11
One of the limitations of antidepressants is that they don't always work. Worse, they don't work in an unpredictable way. Some people benefit from some drugs, and others don't, but there's no way of knowing in advance what will happen in any particular case - or of telling which pill is right for which person.As a result, drug treatment for depression generally involves starting with a cheap medication with relatively mild side-effects, and if that fails, moving onto a series of other drugs unti........ Read more »
Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Gilmer WS, Marangell LB, Burgoyne KS, Howland RH, Trivedi MH, Zisook S, Jain R, Fava M.... (2009) Effectiveness of a quantitative electroencephalographic biomarker for predicting differential response or remission with escitalopram and bupropion in major depressive disorder. Psychiatry research. PMID: 19709754
Leuchter AF, Cook IA, Marangell LB, Gilmer WS, Burgoyne KS, Howland RH, Trivedi MH, Zisook S, Jain R, McCracken JT.... (2009) Comparative effectiveness of biomarkers and clinical indicators for predicting outcomes of SSRI treatment in Major Depressive Disorder: Results of the BRITE-MD study. Psychiatry research. PMID: 19712979
The first doses of vaccine for the Influenza A H1N1 virus (“swine flu”) should be available in October of 2009. Due to an initial limited supply, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that healthcare workers should be first in line to receive the vaccine. Immunizing healthcare workers against the H1N1 virus not only provides personal [...]... Read more »
Jordan, R., & Hayward, A. (2009) Should healthcare workers have the swine flu vaccine?. BMJ, 339(aug25 2). DOI: 10.1136/bmj.b3398
Smith, P., Kennedy, A., Wooten, K., Gust, D., & Pickering, L. (2006) Association Between Health Care Providers' Influence on Parents Who Have Concerns About Vaccine Safety and Vaccination Coverage. PEDIATRICS, 118(5). DOI: 10.1542/peds.2006-0923
Zarocostas, J. (2009) Healthcare workers should get top priority for vaccination against A/H1N1 flu, WHO says. BMJ, 339(jul15 1). DOI: 10.1136/bmj.b2877
A paper just out in Agricultural Science in China reminded me that I wanted to say something about one of the great meta-narratives of plant genetic resources: interdependence — the old no-country-is-self-sufficient-in-PGR mantra. Which, unlike some other meta-narratives, is generally recognized as being true — witness the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food [...]... Read more »
ZHAO, Y., Ofori, A., & LU, C. (2009) Genetic Diversity of European and Chinese Oilseed Brassica rapa Cultivars from Different Breeding Periods. Agricultural Sciences in China, 8(8), 931-938. DOI: 10.1016/S1671-2927(08)60297-7
Qin, J., Chen, W., Guan, R., Jiang, C., Li, Y., Fu, Y., Liu, Z., Zhang, M., Chang, R., & Qiu, L. (2006) Genetic contribution of foreign germplasm to elite Chinese soybean (Glycine max) cultivars revealed by SSR markers. Chinese Science Bulletin, 51(9), 1078-1084. DOI: 10.1007/s11434-006-1078-4
LI, H., HU, R., & ZHANG, S. (2006) The Impact of US and CGIAR Germplasm on Maize Production in China. Agricultural Sciences in China, 5(8), 563-571. DOI: 10.1016/S1671-2927(06)60093-X
Basmati means many things to many people. Some translate it as the prosaic “full of aroma”. Others as the more fanciful “Mother of all Aroma” or “Queen of Fragrance”. But no matter how you render the word, which is Hindi, it is inseparably associated with India. India, however, is not the original source of fragrance [...]... Read more »
Kovach, M., Calingacion, M., Fitzgerald, M., & McCouch, S. (2009) The origin and evolution of fragrance in rice (Oryza sativa L.). Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(34), 14444-14449. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0904077106
Chocolate consumption was associated with lower cardiac mortality in a dose dependent manner in patients free of diabetes surviving their first Acute Myocardial Infarction. In contrast, intake of other sweets was not associated with cardiac or total mortality.
Now be aware that Dr Shock is extremely biased when it comes to chocolate but this conclusion is [...]... Read more »
Janszky, I., Mukamal, K., Ljung, R., Ahnve, S., Ahlbom, A., & Hallqvist, J. (2009) Chocolate consumption and mortality following a first acute myocardial infarction: the Stockholm Heart Epidemiology Program. Journal of Internal Medicine, 266(3), 248-257. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2796.2009.02088.x
Two of the questions anyone who writes extensively about black holes gets is how we actually know where an object that’s powerful enough to funnel photons into is gravitational field really is, and how we can point to the object and decide that it’s a black hole without actually seeing what it is. As the [...]... Read more »
S. R. Majewski, et al. (1999) Omega Centauri: Nucleus of a Milky Way Dwarf Spheroidal?. Proceedings of the 35th Liege International Astrophysics Colloquium. arXiv: astro-ph/9910278v2
Climate change may shuffle avian communities in California
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Stralberg, D., Jongsomjit, D., Howell, C., Snyder, M., Alexander, J., Wiens, J., & Root, T. (2009) Re-Shuffling of Species with Climate Disruption: A No-Analog Future for California Birds?. PLoS ONE, 4(9). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0006825
Proteins are the machinery of life, and they facilitate most of life’s functions. Traffic into and out of the cell? Protein pumps, pores and channels. Respiration? Proteins. Metabolism and catabolism? Proteins. Immune system, signaling, development… all complex networks of interacting proteins. Understanding a protein’s structure can tell us a lot about how it performs [...]... Read more »
Redfern, O., Dessailly, B., Dallman, T., Sillitoe, I., & Orengo, C. (2009) FLORA: A Novel Method to Predict Protein Function from Structure in Diverse Superfamilies. PLoS Computational Biology, 5(8). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1000485
On August 14th, the FDA approved Schering-Plough's second generation antipsychotic drug Saphris (asenapine) for the acute treatment of schizophrenia, and the acute treatment of mania/mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder (1). Question: Should I, at all be concerned that there are more actual published peer-reviewed articles of this drug being tested in rats (2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ) than in humans (7; seriously, this is the only published peer-reviewed article I can find)? I'm not going to di........ Read more »
Potkin SG, Cohen M, & Panagides J. (2007) Efficacy and tolerability of asenapine in acute schizophrenia: a placebo- and risperidone-controlled trial. The Journal of clinical psychiatry, 68(10), 1492-500. PMID: 17960962
Brian Krogel (University of Texas at Austin) and coworkers have worked towards developing efficient solar cells via cheap materials and protocols. This news feature was written on September 3, 2009.... Read more »
Steinhagen, C., Panthani, M. G, Akhavan, V., Goodfellow, B., Koo, B., & Korgel, B. A. (2009) Synthesis of Cu2ZnSnS4 Nanocrystals for Use in Low-Cost Photovoltaics . Journal of the American Chemical Society, 131(35), 12554-12555. DOI: 10.1021/ja905922j
Rhododendrons are one of those plants that, when planted well, can create an amazing garden:(from: http://www.kelleriisgaarden.dk/rhododendron-eng.html)However, it might surprise you to hear that they can be a major cause of landslides. As the image below shows, rhododendrons are increasingly grown on the mountain slopes of the Appalachians:(from: http://toursinthesmokymountains.com/SmokyMountainsInDepth.aspx)As well as creating a somewhat beautiful landscape, rhododendrons have been grown in t........ Read more »
Hales, T., Ford, C., Hwang, T., Vose, J., & Band, L. (2009) Topographic and ecologic controls on root reinforcement. Journal of Geophysical Research, 114(F3). DOI: 10.1029/2008JF001168
How do people interact on discussion boards in an education setting? In my experience, people are much more polite and restrained in classroom discussion boards than on more general boards on the web. It turns out that politeness is actually a construct studied by sociolinguists. They define it in the context of discussion boards as [...]... Read more »
Schallert, D., Chiang, Y., Park, Y., Jordan, M., Lee, H., Janne Cheng, A., Rebecca Chu, H., Lee, S., Kim, T., & Song, K. (2009) Being polite while fulfilling different discourse functions in online classroom discussions. Computers , 53(3), 713-725. DOI: 10.1016/j.compedu.2009.04.009
If you have a falling out with someone and they start ignoring you, they’re “giving you the cold shoulder.” If you feel emotionally close to someone, you have “warm feelings” towards that person. We’re accustomed to using metaphorical language like this to describe human relationships, but do these words also imply more literal meanings?
A new study in the journal Psychological Science investigated whether the actual experience of warmth or coldness influ........ Read more »
IJzerman, H., & Semin, G. (2009) The Thermometer of Social Relations: Mapping Social Proximity on Temperature. Psychological Science. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02434.x
Another week has gone by and some very interesting blog posts have been aggregated into Researchblogging.org. Every week [see my inaugural post on the matter], I'll select some blog posts I consider particularly interesting in the field of molecular biology [see here to get a sense of the criteria that will be used] and list them here for you to check out.This week, three blog posts made the cut:... Read more »
Ghedin, E., Fitch, A., Boyne, A., Griesemer, S., DePasse, J., Bera, J., Zhang, X., Halpin, R., Smit, M., Jennings, L.... (2009) Mixed Infection and the Genesis of Influenza Virus Diversity. Journal of Virology, 83(17), 8832-8841. DOI: 10.1128/JVI.00773-09
Lartigue, C., Vashee, S., Algire, M., Chuang, R., Benders, G., Ma, L., Noskov, V., Denisova, E., Gibson, D., Assad-Garcia, N.... (2009) Creating Bacterial Strains from Genomes That Have Been Cloned and Engineered in Yeast. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.1173759
Castellano, L., Giamas, G., Jacob, J., Coombes, R., Lucchesi, W., Thiruchelvam, P., Barton, G., Jiao, L., Wait, R., Waxman, J.... (2009) The estrogen receptor- -induced microRNA signature regulates itself and its transcriptional response. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0906947106
How did you decide to read this post? You might have seen the headline in an RSS reader or noticed it on the ScienceBlogs home page. Maybe someone emailed or tweeted the link to you. But you still had to make the decision to actually read it. How do you know when you made that decision?
In 1965 H.H. Kornhuber and L. Deeke found that brain activity precedes a conscious choice (voluntarily pressing a button) by 500 to 1,000 milliseconds. But in 1983 a team led by B. Libet found that when people w........ Read more »
Banks WP, & Isham EA. (2009) We infer rather than perceive the moment we decided to act. Psychological science : a journal of the American Psychological Society / APS, 20(1), 17-21. PMID: 19152537
In the late Summer of 1997, the surgeon Robert Smith deliberately amputated the healthy lower left leg of his patient, 38-year-old Kevin Wright, who had been yearning for this outcome since childhood.Back then, Wright's condition was judged to be a form of body dysmorphic disorder - a psychiatric diagnosis characterised by an irrational belief that there is something defective with a body part. Before now, there has been little systematic research with patients experiencing amputation desire, bu........ Read more »
Blanke O, Morgenthaler FD, Brugger P, & Overney LS. (2009) Preliminary evidence for a fronto-parietal dysfunction in able-bodied participants with a desire for limb amputation. Journal of neuropsychology, 3(Pt 2), 181-200. PMID: 19338723
Soil erosion in a wheat field near Washington State University.
Soil erosion has always been a big problem for ecosystems, and often increases with decreased ecosystem health, such as the dry conditions often encouraged by climate change. We normally think of rivers and glaciers as the most powerful eroders, but a study out today in [...]
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Koppes, M., & Montgomery, D. (2009) The relative efficacy of fluvial and glacial erosion over modern to orogenic timescales. Nature Geoscience, 2(9), 644-647. DOI: 10.1038/ngeo616
Our weekly compilation of science news for the week of August 30, 2009.... Read more »
Maehr, R., Chen, S., Snitow, M., Ludwig, T., Yagasaki, L., Goland, R., Leibel, R., & Melton, D. (2009) Generation of pluripotent stem cells from patients with type 1 diabetes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0906894106
Reversade, B., Escande-Beillard, N., Dimopoulou, A., Fischer, B., Chng, S., Li, Y., Shboul, M., Tham, P., Kayserili, H., Al-Gazali, L.... (2009) Mutations in PYCR1 cause cutis laxa with progeroid features. Nature Genetics. DOI: 10.1038/ng.413
This paper on mice evolving a new coat colour has been making a big splash in science news. It’s being touted as a new textbook example of evolution. Actually, not just an example, but an “icon.” I’m not sure what to think about that, given that Icons of Evolution is a notorious creationist book. Plus, the last time someone was touting “it’ll be in all the textbooks” were the promoters of the breathlessly over-hyped Darwinius / Ida fossil.
Reading the........ Read more »
Linnen, C., Kingsley, E., Jensen, J., & Hoekstra, H. (2009) On the Origin and Spread of an Adaptive Allele in Deer Mice. Science, 325(5944), 1095-1098. DOI: 10.1126/science.1175826
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