Update on the lectures

27 09 2007

Just because some of you had asked how they were going, I thought I’d write a quick progress-report on the lectures that I had to give this week. Tuesday’s lecture went fairly well (although a little bit faster than I had intended it to go). While some of the students didn’t seem especially interested while I was giving the talk, I got some great questions afterwards about Lamarck, endosymbionts, and other matters. I expected a more low-key reaction, however, just because the lecture was more historical in nature (but it seemed that I gave the students a closer look at Darwin’s life and his scientific accomplishments).

Today I’m giving my ID/creationism lecture, which will be a lot more fun. I was able to find a handful of videos to download (a Creation Museum commercial, a Kent Hovind ad, the Simpsons evolution couch intro from a few months back, the Colbert Report Behe interview, an Inherit the Wind clip, Ray Comfort’s banana mishap, etc.) so outside of providing commentary I’ll be able to let the creationists speak for themselves to a certain extent. I also threw in a few more jokes and illustrations, so while it needs some work I think today will be a more more fun and interesting lecture than Tuesday’s. Many thanks to Peter McGrath of The Beagle Project as well, who has supplied me with some wonderful photos to use in some future lectures and on Laelaps.

I definitely enjoy giving lectures, though, and I certainly hope to deliver one for Darwin Day in February, that is if I can get enough Rutgers faculty interested enough to join in. I’ve got a lot on my plate as it is at the moment, but I hope that winter break will give me enough of a respite to get something organized, although I am much looking forward to January’s Science Blogging Conference, as well.



4 responses

27 09 2007
Chris Harrison

Cool. Glad you’re having fun. The link entitled “The Beagle Project” isn’t working, by the way.

27 09 2007

Thanks Chris; I don’t know why that link didn’t turn out right initial, but it’s all fixed now. I’m sorry to hear about your bio troubles (from the last comment I didn’t respond to right away); I definitely have the same dilemma involving some of my classes. My precalc professor is absolutely horrible, and it will be a miracle if I get through the class. Why are the worst teachers always instructing the basic courses? So many students suffer because of professors who are terrible teachers in required 101 courses.

27 09 2007
Chris Harrison

Yeah, I sent her an email about a few of her lectures.. critiqued them, suggested additional information, and corrected a few of the mistakes she made. I felt a little pompous sending the email, but I got a friendly reply. She thanked me for the comments and said she wishes more students gave her feedback. I guess that’s progress of sorts.. though I’m still disappointed with the class as a whole.

30 09 2007

Does Rutgers still have its annual geology open house? That would seem a good occasion to present your Creationism lecture again.

I wonder if introductory classes are assigned to the least capable presenters because the departments fear those people might not be capable of presenting the more advanced material? Students were making the same complaints when I was an undergraduate (back in the Ordovician, I think it was).

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