Request for help

dh321 at excite.com dh321 at excite.com
Wed May 16 22:29:06 EST 2001


Re: Request for help

I think you misunderstood my comment. You asked for input and I meant that
until I saw specifically what plant content you planned to include, it would
be difficult for me to comment on whether you had a sufficient plant
content. It would be valuable to this discussion if you could provide the
plant topics to be covered in your intro biology courses. 

I do agree with you that too much detail is often presented in college
biology courses. For example, I memorized the Krebs cycle for several
different classes and regurgitated the Krebs intermediates and enzymes on
exams but I don't see that it was much more than a short-term memorization
exercise. I think we often present far too many details on certain subjects,
such as photosynthesis, and end up shortchanging or omitting altogether
other important topics, such as dioecious species and seedless fruits.

David Hershey
dh321 at excite.com


----- Original Message ----- 
From: Jon Monroe <monroejd at jmu.edu> 
> David Hershey wrote:
> 
> > It would be necessary to see detailed course
> > outlines to determine if sufficient plant content is included.
> 
> I understand your concern, but what would prevent those who value
> content in their particular area from rejecting a proposed course? I'm
> not suggesting that content isn't important - it is essential - but we
> can't keep pouring all of the facts we know into the heads of first year
> students. The volume of facts keeps going up and most students are not
receptive.
> 
> To make a change work I think the faculty as a whole have to agree ahead
> of time on the content that will be covered in the intro courses and how
> (generally) it will be covered before the courses are developed. If
> plant biologists (or any other minority) are involved in the process at
> all stages the final outcome shouldn't necessarily be bad for them.
> 
> Jon
> 
> ---------------------------------------------------------
> Jonathan D. Monroe Associate Professor 
> Department of Biology, MSC 7801 office: 540-568-6649 
> James Madison University fax: 540-568-3333 
> Harrisonburg, VA 22807 email: monroejd at jmu.edu 
> http://csm.jmu.edu/biology/monroejd/jmonroe.html 
> ---------------------------------------------------------
> 






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