Genetics Homework

Article Review Assignment The purpose of this assignment is to take what you have learned from class and see what is currently happening in the world of genetics or to find something new that interests you and learn about it. For this assignment, you are to find 10 articles that relate to genetics and summarize as well as comment on them. You may find the articles from different published sources either in print form or online. Each article must be a minimum of seven paragraphs and from the last 5 years. Make sure there is some focus on genetics – sometimes people have found interesting scientific or medically related articles and submitted them, but they have had no genetic component. The articles should be from periodicals/scientific journals. You are not limited to any sources that I mention below, but here are some ideas and information that might help you get started:

• You can go to the primary source for your article – this means the article is written by the people who actually did the work and has been peer reviewed by experts on the subject. These articles are usually in very specific genetics journals like The American Journal of Human Genetics, Cell, or Nature Genetics, but they can sometimes be very technical and difficult. The journal Science is often a little less technical but has articles from all different sciences so you would need to search for ones specific to genetics.

• You may also use a secondary source such as Scientific American, Science News, The

Scientist or Discover that are written by someone summarizing the work published in a primary source. These are often more reader friendly but can also be mixed with someone’s interpretation or opinion of the work that was done.

• You may also use articles from the popular press if they are from a widely circulated

newspaper like the Washington Post, The New York Times, or The Wall Street Journal. However, you may only use each of these for one article review, not all ten.

• Another resource is the Tri-C Library. Here is a link to the Biology Subject Guide: You will find tabs titled Article Databases, Print Resources, Websites, and Help & Cite Your Sources. There is information under each tab and links to many other resources. If you don’t use the link I provided, you can also get there by going to the Tri-C Homepage (, click on “Student Resources” at the top, then scroll down to “Support and Services” and you will find a link to the library. When you get to the library site, there is a link to “Subject Guides” and then you will be able to click on “Biology” when the guides are sorted by subject.

As I mentioned, your sources may be online or in print. Some print sources also have their articles online so you would be able to include the web address with your summary. If you choose a source that is completely online, make sure that it is a true publication and not a blog or personal website with information. There should be the name of the source, the date it was published as well as the name of the author – if you can’t find these things, then it is probably not an officially
published article. If you choose a source that is strictly in print you need to give me a copy. There are directions below for submitting print articles. You may NOT use sites like Web MD, personal blogs or homepages, advertisements, support group websites for various genetic disorders, tabloids or gossip magazines. If you have a question about the appropriateness of a resource be sure and ask me! Here are the specific directions for this project 1. For each article, summarize the article and write your personal reaction to the article. The

summary should be in your own words. Do not just change the order of the words in the original article. If you quote the author, be sure to indicate that it is a quote. Plagiarism will not be tolerated. Your reaction or comment on the article needs to have substance – in other words don’t just say “I thought it was interesting” and leave it at that. If you have concerns as to whether your comments are enough – you can always send me a sample and I can give you feedback.

2. Each article summary/reaction should be a minimum of 2 paragraphs and a maximum of 4

paragraphs. A paragraph should be at least 5 sentences; this is approximately 200 words. (you can easily do a word count in the program that you are using. In Word it is under “Review” then “Word Count”.

3. Articles should not be more than 5 years old.

4. Summaries should be saved in one document and numbered. With each summary, be sure

to include the name of the article, the source of the article, any page or volume numbers, and the date of publication. Points will be deducted for not following these directions. Look at the examples posted for reference.

5. Submit a web address or a copy of the article with each summary.

A. Web articles: Obviously there will be no problem submitting the web address with the article and sending it with your assignment or pasting an electronic copy.

B. Print articles – you may do one of the following: 1. Depending on the source, many periodicals have electronic versions as well so you

can submit a web address. You can also copy the article if it is from an electronic source that I won’t have access to and submit it electronically with the summary. If you choose to do this, please “clean up” the article and remove anything unrelated to the article (advertisements, pictures, unnecessary page breaks, etc.);

2. Scan the article and submit it electronically with your summaries; 3. Fax the articles to me at 216.987.5066. Please let me know if you do this so I know

to go and get the fax; 4. Deliver the articles to my mail box at the Western Campus 5. You may send me the articles by mail:

Dr. Cathy Jenkins

Cuyahoga Community College 11000 Pleasant Valley Road Parma, OH 44130

6. To give you have an idea of what the assignment should look like I have posted two examples under the “Assignment Link”. These students received all the points for the assignment. Notice that they have the references cited properly and have summarized things in their own words.

This assignment is worth a total of 50 points (11% of your grade); each article and summary you submit will be worth a maximum of 5 points. Remember 5 points will be deducted for each day the article is late. This assignment is due before or by Friday, July 28th. I will be posting directions on how to submit your assignment closer to the due date. If you are going to mail the articles, plan ahead so that the materials reach me by the due date. Points will be deducted for article reviews received after the due date, if you do not follow the directions for formatting the assignment, or using an inappropriate source. If you have any questions about this assignment, feel free to contact me.

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