This class focuses on English reading and writing. Students read articles and discuss them in class. They work in groups to give presentations. Students write two papers and read extensively outside of class.
The course is taught entirely in English. Students do not study about English; they use English as a tool to learn about scientific communication. Students are required to read, write, and speak English as much as possible.
Ian Bowring et alia (2014) Our Place in the Universe. Seibido. ISBN 978-4-7919-1015-1.
Each week during class we will have some expansion activity. This may be a simulation, an experiment, a video, or some other activity to learn more about the week's topic.
Each time we do an expansion activity in class, you should keep notes. Write down what you did and what you figured out during the activity. Use English as much as you can.
Two times during the term you will write a paper. The paper will be based on one expansion activity and your notes about it. Choose one activity and write a one page report about it.
In the case of an experiment or simulation, be sure to include the purpose of the experiment, the procedures (what you did), the results, and the conclusions (what you learned by thinking about the results).
In the case of a presentation or video, be sure to include the theme or main point, the specific evidence given in support of the theme, and the conclusions. Explain what you learned from the video presentation.
One week during class you will plan and lead some expansion activity related to a unit in the textbook. Working with a group, you will choose a unit from the textbook and design a simulation, an experiment, or some other activity to help the class learn more about the unit's topic.
Choose a group of 7-9 students. With your group, choose one of the following units from the textbook. Then work together to design and plan an activity.
- Unit 2. Tides
- Unit 5. Climate modeling
- Unit 6. Dark Matter and Dark Energy
- Unit 9. The Hazards of Space Travel
- Unit 10. The Cassini-Huygens Mission to Saturn
- Unit 11. Space Junk
- Unit 12. Saving the Kakapo
- Unit 18. Lasers
- Unit 20. Keeping Us Alive for Longer
- Unit 21. Robots
- Unit 22. Plastics
Your activity should take about 45 minutes to one hour to complete. The rest of the time students will discuss the textbook.
After your group presents its activity, you will write a 1-2 page report about it. Be sure to include the topic, the procedures of the presentation (what you did or what you asked students in the class to do), and the goals of the activity (what you hope other students learned).
Also in your report, evaluate each member of the group. Write your name, how much time you spent working on the presentation, and what grade you think you deserve (S, A, B, or C). Then write the name of each member of your group and what grade you think she or he deserves.
Your grade is based on both the effectiveness of the group presentation and your report.
|1||Impact craters. Using English as a tool.|
|2||Great Pacific garbage patch. Paragraphs.|
|3||Life in extreme environments. Writing lab reports.|
|4||Birth of genetics. Plagiarism.|
|5||Monarch butterfly migration. Writing essays.|
|6||Natural selection. The writing process.|
|7||Light in the sky. Working in groups.|
|8||Coral reefs. Logical argumentation.|
|9||Rockets. Unity in writing.|
|10||Human population. Coherence in writing.|
|11||Renewable energy. Public speaking techniques.|
|12||Hazards of space travel. Group presentation 1.|
|13||Plastics. Group presentation 2.|
|14||Dark matter and dark energy. Group presentation 3.|
|15||Keeping us alive longer. Group presentation 4. Robots: smarter than humans? Group presentation 5.|
Course grade is based on two written assignments, a group presentation, a reading journal, self-study, standardized test scores, and work in class.