Devising an online resource to help undergraduate science students critically evaluate research articles

Trevor Day, Julie Letchford, Hazel Corradi, Tom Rogers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Critically evaluating research papers is an important vehicle for promoting acculturation into a scientific discipline. As science students progress through their undergraduate studies, their critical abilities are expected to become heightened, and research papers are read and cited in order to support a variety of assignments, such as essays, critical reviews and presentations, progressing to shaping laboratory research projects and dissertation-writing. This paper describes the process of designing a modular online resource. The resource is aimed at familiarising students with the structural conventions and argumentative devices used in research papers and supporting them in deep-reading a research paper in life sciences or chemistry. The modules employ audio- and video-recorded extracts from interviews with a key author to provide a context for the origins, motivations and processes behind the writing of a specific paper, plus scaffolded questions to encourage critical evaluation of the paper. Notable features of the project were the employment of a multi-disciplinary team of staff and research postgraduates coupled with the developmental testing of the resource by undergraduates. Lessons learnt from the project are considered, including the resource’s integration within the curriculum and the challenges of writing such interactive resources for different disciplines.
Original languageEnglish
Article number172
Pages (from-to)1-19
JournalJournal of Academic Writing
Volume5
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Fingerprint

science
resources
student
scientific discipline
life sciences
earning a doctorate
acculturation
research project
chemistry
video
staff
curriculum
ability
interview
evaluation

Cite this

Devising an online resource to help undergraduate science students critically evaluate research articles. / Day, Trevor; Letchford, Julie; Corradi, Hazel; Rogers, Tom.

In: Journal of Academic Writing, Vol. 5, No. 2, 172, 2015, p. 1-19.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{8c46ed70b0554404926faad616a3e526,
title = "Devising an online resource to help undergraduate science students critically evaluate research articles",
abstract = "Critically evaluating research papers is an important vehicle for promoting acculturation into a scientific discipline. As science students progress through their undergraduate studies, their critical abilities are expected to become heightened, and research papers are read and cited in order to support a variety of assignments, such as essays, critical reviews and presentations, progressing to shaping laboratory research projects and dissertation-writing. This paper describes the process of designing a modular online resource. The resource is aimed at familiarising students with the structural conventions and argumentative devices used in research papers and supporting them in deep-reading a research paper in life sciences or chemistry. The modules employ audio- and video-recorded extracts from interviews with a key author to provide a context for the origins, motivations and processes behind the writing of a specific paper, plus scaffolded questions to encourage critical evaluation of the paper. Notable features of the project were the employment of a multi-disciplinary team of staff and research postgraduates coupled with the developmental testing of the resource by undergraduates. Lessons learnt from the project are considered, including the resource’s integration within the curriculum and the challenges of writing such interactive resources for different disciplines.",
author = "Trevor Day and Julie Letchford and Hazel Corradi and Tom Rogers",
year = "2015",
doi = "10.18552/joaw.v5i2.172",
language = "English",
volume = "5",
pages = "1--19",
journal = "Journal of Academic Writing",
issn = "2225-8973",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Devising an online resource to help undergraduate science students critically evaluate research articles

AU - Day, Trevor

AU - Letchford, Julie

AU - Corradi, Hazel

AU - Rogers, Tom

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - Critically evaluating research papers is an important vehicle for promoting acculturation into a scientific discipline. As science students progress through their undergraduate studies, their critical abilities are expected to become heightened, and research papers are read and cited in order to support a variety of assignments, such as essays, critical reviews and presentations, progressing to shaping laboratory research projects and dissertation-writing. This paper describes the process of designing a modular online resource. The resource is aimed at familiarising students with the structural conventions and argumentative devices used in research papers and supporting them in deep-reading a research paper in life sciences or chemistry. The modules employ audio- and video-recorded extracts from interviews with a key author to provide a context for the origins, motivations and processes behind the writing of a specific paper, plus scaffolded questions to encourage critical evaluation of the paper. Notable features of the project were the employment of a multi-disciplinary team of staff and research postgraduates coupled with the developmental testing of the resource by undergraduates. Lessons learnt from the project are considered, including the resource’s integration within the curriculum and the challenges of writing such interactive resources for different disciplines.

AB - Critically evaluating research papers is an important vehicle for promoting acculturation into a scientific discipline. As science students progress through their undergraduate studies, their critical abilities are expected to become heightened, and research papers are read and cited in order to support a variety of assignments, such as essays, critical reviews and presentations, progressing to shaping laboratory research projects and dissertation-writing. This paper describes the process of designing a modular online resource. The resource is aimed at familiarising students with the structural conventions and argumentative devices used in research papers and supporting them in deep-reading a research paper in life sciences or chemistry. The modules employ audio- and video-recorded extracts from interviews with a key author to provide a context for the origins, motivations and processes behind the writing of a specific paper, plus scaffolded questions to encourage critical evaluation of the paper. Notable features of the project were the employment of a multi-disciplinary team of staff and research postgraduates coupled with the developmental testing of the resource by undergraduates. Lessons learnt from the project are considered, including the resource’s integration within the curriculum and the challenges of writing such interactive resources for different disciplines.

U2 - 10.18552/joaw.v5i2.172

DO - 10.18552/joaw.v5i2.172

M3 - Article

VL - 5

SP - 1

EP - 19

JO - Journal of Academic Writing

JF - Journal of Academic Writing

SN - 2225-8973

IS - 2

M1 - 172

ER -