Discerning Truth from Fiction in the News

portertoaststicksBiotechnology

Oct 23, 2013 (3 years and 9 months ago)

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Submitted by V. Lee. C. Mokono and J. Paas


Discerning Truth from Fiction in the News

A Culminating Task within the

SBI4U

Molecular Genetics Unit

Teacher resource


Objective:

1. The students will gain discernment while evaluating

the accuracy of

mainstream news articles
about Genetics topics.

2. The students will integrate and apply concepts learned in the Molecular Genetics Unit.

3. Students will learn about biotechnology from their research and from evaluating the research
of their peers.

Ministry Expectations Fulfilled
:

D1.

analyse some of the social, ethical, and legal issues associated with genetic research and
biotechnology;


D3.

demonstrate an understanding of concepts related to molecular genetics, and how genetic
modification is ap
plied in industry and agriculture

D1.1

analyse, on the basis of research, some of the social, ethical, and legal implications of
biotechnology (e.g., the bioengineering of animal species, especially those intended for human
consumption; the cultivation of
transgenic crops; the patenting of life forms; cloning) [IP, PR, AI, C]


D2.1

use appropriate terminology related to molecular genetics, including, but not limited to:
polymerase I, II, and III, DNA ligase, helicase, Okazaki fragment, mRNA, rRNA, tRNA, co
don,
anticodon, translation, transcription, and ribosome subunits [C]


D3.5

describe some examples of genetic modification, and explain how it is applied in industry and
agriculture (e.g., the processes involved in cloning, or in the sequencing of DNA base
s; the processes
involved in the manipulation of genetic material and protein synthesis; the development and mechanisms
of the polymerization chain reaction)


D3.6

describe the functions of some of the cell components used in biotechnology (e.g., the roles

of
plasmids, restriction enzymes, recombinant DNA, and vectors in genetic engineering)


A1.3


identify and locate a variety of print and electronic sources that enable them to address
research topics fully and appropriately


A1.7


s
elect, organize, and
record relevant information on research topics from a variety of
appropriate sources, including electronic, print, and/or human sources, using suitable formats and an
accepted form of academic documentation



A1.8


synthesize, analyse, interpret, and evalu
ate qualitative and/or quantitative data to determine
whether the evidence supports or refutes the initial prediction or hypothesis and whether it is consistent
with scientific theory; identify sources of bias and/or error; and suggest improvements to the
inquiry to
reduce the likelihood of error


A1.
9

analyse the information gathered from research sources for logic, accuracy, reliability,
adequacy, and bias


Rationale
:

Several expectations of the Molecular Genetics Unit in SBI4U require students to be lite
rate
concerning current biotechnology discoveries and processes.
One primary way to gain this
knowledge is from current news reports. Yet how can students be sure that what they are reading
is completely true
,

sensationalized, or worse yet, misrepresented for
the author’s
agenda?


This culminating project has three purposes:

1. Teach students to be discerning when reading Genetics news

2. Provide opportunities for students to gain knowledge of current Genetic t
echnologies through
research and reading their peers’ work

3.
Equip students with inquiry and Investigation skills through implementing research
techniques.


The Content Strategy

1.
Students will find a mainstream article from a source available to all re
aders, i.e. magazine,
newspaper, radio, television, documentary, electronic news, etc. that describes a recent
advancement in Genetic biotechnology


2. Students will note science journals or articles that are mentioned in the mainstream article and
try to
locate them.


3. Students will look online or at the reference library for peer reviewed articles from science
publications that discuss the Genetics to
pic in

the mainstream article.
At least three

peer
reviewed

articles must be located.


4.

Students will evaluate the accuracy and legitimacy of the mainstream article by comparing it
to the scientific articles in the following criteria:


a) the general accuracy of the information portrayed in the mainstream news

b) common variables within the

scientific research and the mainstream article

c) information within the research that is contradictory, problematic, and responsible for
differences within the peer reviewed articles and the mainstream article.

d) important information that was not menti
oned

e) required areas of further research or extensions of the Genetics topic



5. Display the analysed criteria clearly in a poster format in a way that is
clear, easy to read,
creative and attractive.


6. References must be properly made
within the text

(author, year),

and the poster must be
accompanied by a
List of References

in proper APA format.

7. Students will do a “scavenger hunt” on the day the posters are set up and look for specific
information about biotechnology from the posters. See sample sc
avenger hunt activity attached.


Research Cri
teria
:

Students must use peer reviewed articles published with in the last 10 years from a scientific
journal, magazine or publication.


Examples

of articles and journals
:

Students

are not l
imited to these
examples. If they

find
others,

they must

have the
m

approved by the teacher.


Choose
one

article as your mainstream:

1. Mainstream News Media:


Macleans, Time Magazine, CBC, BBC, CNN, CTV, Toronto Star, National Post, Globe and
Mail, Newsweek
, television
documentaries



Choose
three
from a combination of A and B. You must have one of each, and the
n a second
from either category:

2. Science Publication A (accessible to the general public)


National Geographic



Popular Science

Nature




Scientific American

Discover





eurekaalert.org

New Scientist





AAAS


American Association for the Advancement of Science



3. Science Publication B (usually only accessed by resea
r
chers)


See
www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov

for
a comprehensive list of science publications

New England Journal of Medicine

Canadian Medical Association Journal

American Journal of Human Genetics

Journal of Genetics

JAMA


Journal of the American Medical Association

Genetics

American Scientist




List
of References


Carter
-
Edwards, Trent et al.,
Biology 12
, McGraw
-
Hill Ryerson, Toronto, ON, 2011


Lee, Meiah, Biology teacher, Peoples Christian Academy, Toronto, ON, 2007


This is the peer analysis activity to be used when the posters are brought in to
class and set up
around the science lab.

This will be given to the students at the same time as the
student
handout
and assessment tool.

All three should be given to the students when the task is introduced.


Name_________________________

Date___________________


Discerning Genetics News

Scavenger Hunt

As you read the posters that are displayed in the science lab, look for the following information
and fill in your sheet. Make sure you identify the journal names when you explain the research.
Ex: “ In the Journal of Orthopedic Medicine, the author claims
…”

1. Find one discovery that discusses research on cancer. Explain what the research claims.
A)___________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
___
_________________________________________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________


2. Find a project that discusses new research about DNA. Explain what the research claims.
____________________________
__________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student______________
__________


3. Find a project where there is contradictory evidence for the issue discussed. Explain the
contradiction.
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Title _________________________________
____ Student________________________





4
. Find a

project

where the scientific evidence backs up the mainstream article’s claims.

Explain what the evidence claims.
A)___________________________________________________________________________
_____________
_________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________


5. Find a project that gives information that may c
ontribute to your health. Explain what the
research claims.

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
_______________________________________
_____________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________


6. Find a project that taught you something you didn’t know before. Explain what you learned.

__________________________.__________________________________
_________________
______________________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________


7. Find a project that

you might do further research on. Identify what you would research.

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________
______________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________

8. Find a project that discusses a technology such as cloning, PCR, or Genetic manipulation.

__________________________._____________________________
______________________
______________________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Title _____________________________________ Student________________________

SBI4U Student Hando
ut

Discerning Truth from Fiction in the News

A Culminating Task within the Molecular Genetics Unit

Objective:

1. The students will gain discernment
and analyse information gathered from research sources

while evaluating the accuracy of mainstream news articles about Genetics topics.

2. The students will integrate and apply concepts learned in the Molecular Genetics Unit.

3. Students will learn about biotechnology from their research and from evaluat
ing t
he research
of their peers.


The Content Strategy

STEP 1
.

Find a mainstream article from a source available to all readers, i.e. magazine, newspaper, radio,
television, documentary, electronic news, etc. that describes a recent advancement in Genetic
biote
chnology



STEP 2
.

Note science journals or articles that are mentioned in the mainstream article and locate them.


STEP 3


Look online or at the reference library for peer
-
reviewed articles from science publications that
discuss the Genetics topic in th
e mainstream article (from #1).
At least three

peer
-
reviewed

articles must be located.


STEP 4.

Evaluate the accuracy and legitimacy of the mainstream article by comparing it to the scientific
articles in the following criteria:


a) the

general accuracy of the information portrayed in the mainstream news compared to what
was learned in class and what was found in peer
-
reviewed articles

b) common variables within the scientific research and between the research and the mainstream
article


c) information within the research that is contradictory, problematic, and responsible for
differences between the peer reviewed articles and the mainstream article

d) important information that was not mentioned in the mainstream article

e) required

areas of further research or extensions of the Genetics topic


STEP 5
.

Display the analysed criteria clearly in a poster format in a way that is clear, easy to read,
creative and attractive. The five questions above should be arranged on your poster so t
hat others
can easily find your answer to them.


STEP 6
.


References must be properly made
within the text

(author, year),

and the poster must be
accompanied by a List of References in proper APA format.


STEP
7.

Students will do a “scavenger hunt” on the
day the posters are set up and look for specific
information about biotechnol
ogy from the posters. See
scavenger hunt activity attached
.

See rating scale for assessment.


Research Criteria:

Peer
-
reviewed articles must be used that were published with
in the last 10 years from a scientific
journal, magazine or publication.
Examples: ( You are not limited to these examples. If you find
others, have your examples approved by the teacher.)


Choose
one

article as your mainstream:

1. Mainstream News Media:


Macleans, Time Magazine, CBC, BBC, CNN, CTV, Toronto Star, National Post, Globe and
Mail, Newsweek, television documentaries


Choose
three
from a combination of A and B. You must have one of each, and then a second
from either category.

2. Science Publica
tion A (accessible to the general public)


National Geographic


Popular Science

Nature




Scientific American

Discover




eurekaalert.org

New Scientist





AAAS


American Association for the Advancement of Science



3. Science Publication B (usually
only accessed by resea
r
chers)


See
www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov

for a comprehensive list of science publications

New England Journal of Medicine

Canadian Medical Association Journal

American Journal of Human Ge
netics

Journal of Genetics

JAMA


Journal of the American Medical Association

Genetics

American Scientist




Discerning Truth from Fiction in the News

AQ Culminating Task Assessment Tool: Rating Scale

b
y Vega Lee, Chri stel Mokono, Jocel yn Paas

Ministry
Expectations Fulfilled
:

D1.

analyse some of the social, ethical, and legal issues associated with genetic research and
biotechnology;

D3.

demonstrate an understanding of concepts related to molecular genetics, and how genetic
modification is applied in i
ndustry and agriculture

D1.1

analyse, on the basis of research, some of the social, ethical, and legal implications of
biotechnology (e.g., the bioengineering of animal species, especially those intended for human
consumption; the cultivation of transgenic

crops; the patenting of life forms; cloning) [IP, PR, AI, C]


D2.1

use appropriate terminology related to molecular genetics, including, but not limited to:
polymerase I, II, and III, DNA ligase, helicase, Okazaki fragment, mRNA, rRNA, tRNA, codon, antico
don,
translation, transcription, and ribosome subunits [C]

D3.5

describe some examples of genetic modification, and explain how it is applied in industry and
agriculture (e.g., the processes involved in cloning, or in the sequencing of DNA bases; the proce
sses
involved in the manipulation of genetic material and protein synthesis; the development and
mechanisms of the polymerization chain reaction)

D3.6

describe the functions of some of the cell components used in biotechnology (e.g., the roles of
plasmids,

restriction enzymes, recombinant DNA, and vectors in genetic engineering)

A1.3


identify and locate a variety of print and electronic sources that enable them to address
research topics fully and appropriately


A1.7

select, organize, and record relevant
information on research topics from a variety of
appropriate sources, including electronic, print, and/or human sources, using suitable formats and an
accepted form of academic documentation


A1.8

synthesize, analyse, interpret, and evaluate qualitative a
nd/or quantitative data to determine
whether the evidence supports or refutes the initial prediction or hypothesis and whether it is
consistent with scientific theory; identify sources of bias and/or error; and suggest improvements to the
inquiry to reduce

the likelihood of error

A1.9

analyse the information gathered from research sources for logic, accuracy, reliability,
adequacy, and bias


Criteria questions analysed:

a) the general accuracy of the information portrayed in the mainstream news compared to
what
was learned in class and what was found in peer
-
reviewed articles

b) common variables between the scientific research and the mainstream article

c) information within the research that is contradictory, problematic, and responsible for
differences bet
ween the peer reviewed articles and the mainstream article

d) important information that was not mentioned in the mainstream article

e) required areas of further research or extensions of the Genetics topic






Rating Scale


Assessment as Learning

for the Preparation criteria (#’s 1
-
5)

This section can be submitted for revision and checked for progress along the
way. Students will learn from their assessment and make corrections.



Assessment of Learning

for the Poster criteria (A


F)





Preparation Criteria



Comments/ Ministry expectations
fulfilled


Possible Marks

Topic Commitment

1. news article chosen on time,


relevant to genetics unit,


recent within 10 years

2. Three peer reviewed articles found
from appropriate scientific sources
,
enough information recorded as notes to
show that all 5 questions can be
discussed.


DUE DATE:

A1.3, A1.8, A1.9




D2.1, D3.5, D3.6


1. ____/3



2. _____/3



Progress Check

3
. Research journal is complete with
dates and details.

4
. References are
cited within the text
with proper APA format

5
. Research covers all 5 questions


DUE DATE:

A1.3, A1.7, A1.8, A1.9

D2.1, D3.5, D3.6


3. ____/2


4_____/2


5 _____/2


Total: ____/12


Poster Criteria




Comments/ministry expectations
fulfilled


Possible Marks

A. Clarity:

Social , ethical, or legal issues about the
biotechnology researched is clearly
organized and discussed.

D1.1


1. ____/5

B. Language/Style:


Use of appropriate terminology

Terms explained, grammar and spelling
accurate

Creative and
attractive arrangement of
research on the board


D2.1


2. _____/10

C. Content:


Research is analysed for logic, accuracy,
A1.9


3._____/10

reliability, adequacy and bias.

D. Thoroughness:
Each question is
covered thoroughly.

A1.3, A1.8

Question 1:

Question 2:

Question 3:

Question 4:

Question 5:



4. _____/20

E. References:
Sources are properly
referenced both cited within the body of
the discussion and I the List of
References.

A1.7


5. _____/10




F. Peer Analysis “Scavenger Hunt”:
Information
gained from analysing
classmates’ posters is accurate and
thorough.

A good variety of topics were chosen to
analyse.


Overall Comments:



6. ______/16




Total: ___/71