BIOS E-16/W Writing Assignments
Undergraduate Assignment 1: Constructing a Summary
For your first assignment, you will summarize the results, conclusions, and significance of a research article. The purpose is to hone your reading comprehension skills, particularly for primary scientific works. The intended audience for your summary is college freshman majoring in biology. This means they have had high school science courses, but are not fluent in complex scientific terminology.
Your paper should be 3-5 double-spaced pages, which totals approximately 750-1250 words (use Arial or Times 11-12 point font). Your summary should consist of 3 parts: introduction, summary, and conclusions. During section meetings, you will go over the two assigned articles and discuss the components of your paper. You will choose one of the articles to summarize. A rough draft will be due for peer review in section on February 24. A rough draft will be due to your TA on March 2, and final drafts are due after spring break on March 16.
Introduction (~1 page): Begin your paper with a brief introduction to the topic covered in the primary article. This should include an explanation of major cell biology subject examined (i.e. apoptosis) and the model system(s) used with a description of strengths and weaknesses of the model. Use one-two review articles on your topic to support your claims.
Summary (~2 pages):State the major conclusions of the primary article. Describe the most relevant experiments in layman terms.
Conclusions (~1 page):In this final section you should put the relevance of the work into a broader context. Convey the significance of the work to humanity.
References (<1 page):List of citations used in your paper. Citations should follow The Cell journal format.
- Jason C. Young et al. Molecular Chaperones Hsp90 and Hsp70 Deliver Preproteins to the Mitochondrial Import Receptor Tom70. Cell (2003) 112: 41-50.
- Moore, MS and Blobel, G. The GTP-binding protein Ran/TC4 is required for protein import into the nucleus. Nature. 1993 Oct 14;365(6447):661-3.