Adventures in Ethics and Science

Archives for June, 2007

Stuff worth reading.

I want to share some of the items I’ve been reading elsewhere. Some of them strike me as having a very “summertime” feel to them, while others are just about the non-seasonal issues that are part of life.

Chad got to this first (cursed time zones), but I want to say a bit about the Inside Higher Ed article on the tumult in the Philosophy Department at the College of William & Mary that concerns, at least in part, how involved junior faculty should be in major departmental decisions: Should tenure-track faculty members…

There’s an article in today’s Inside Higher Ed on the building momentum in college chemistry courses to make the labs greener — that is, to reduce the amount of hazardous materials necessary in the required student experiments. What grabbed me about the article is that it looks like the greening of the chem labs may…

There’s another piece in the New York Times today about how birth order and family dynamics might play a role in “intelligence” (as measured by IQ — an imperfect measure at best). This is a follow up to their earlier story about research reported in Science and Intelligence that claims, based on research on male…

Since it has come up in the comments on my review of Kazuo Ishiguro’s novel Never Let Me Go, I’m going to go ahead and discuss some of the issues around cutting-edge biomedical technologies in the book that might, or might not, be plausible when pondered. (As Bill points out, the scientific details in the…

Last May, on my way back from a mini-conference in Stockholm, I had a long layover in Munich. Since major airports are now essentially shopping malls with parking for commercial jets, I used a little bit of that time to wander through a pretty impressive airport book store, where I picked up a copy of…

Zuska reminded me that today is the one-year anniversary of the suicide of Denice Denton, an accomplished electrical engineer, tireless advocate for the inclusion and advancement of women in science and, at the time of her death, the chancellor of UC-Santa Cruz. I never met Denton, and a year ago my feelings about her were…

If you had to give this blog a movie rating, what would it be and why?

Another article from Inside Higher Ed that caught my eye: The chancellor of the City University of New York [Matthew Goldstein] floated a unique approach this week to dealing with the long lamented problem of low enrollments in the sciences: Offer promising students conditional acceptances to top Ph.D. programs in science, technology, engineering and math…

Recently Inside Higher Ed had an article about a study (PDF here) coming out of the University of California on the predictive power of the SAT with respect to grades in college courses. The study, by Saul Geiser and Maria Veronica Santelices at the UC-Berkeley Center for Studies in Higher Education, followed the performance (which…