Happy New Year VIPEr users! I am teaching a 3 week full-time course that is an introduction to research during DePauw's January term. In addition to the lab work, I'd like to give them some general readings that give a sense of the nature of scientific research. Does anyone have any particularly good readings to suggest that give a good sense of what research is all about? These will be mostly first year students, so the more accessible, the better! --Hilary
My current favorite favorite introduction to the nature of science and research is a video from CIRES at the University of Colorado called "Upward and Outward: Scientific Inquiry on the Tibetan Plateau." I love this video!
Here's a link to the video and some great teaching resources (their own version of a learning object!): http://cires.colorado.edu/education/outreach/TibetOutwardUpward/
I hope a lot of people check this out!
I am not sure these exactly match your expectation, but these are worth reading and aimed at a general audience.
"Paradigms Lost and Paradigms Found: Examples of Science Extraordinary and Science Pathological And How To Tell the Difference"
Nicholas J. Turro, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2000, 39, No. 13
"Strong Inference" John R. Platt, Science, 1964, 146 (3642) 347-353 (Oct 16).
One of my favorite books to read is Carl Djerssai's Cantor's Dilemma. I originally read it for a Philosophy of Science class in college and now discuss it with my Literature & Seminar students.
Although this book isn't explicitly about the nature of research, it's an interesting way to talk about issues related to the culture of science. Another interesting book along these lines is Allegra Goodman's Intuition.