Impressions about Molecule of the Week Assignment
Initally, I was intimidated by this assignment. I don’t read science journals on a daily basis – actually I don’t really read them ever – and I was weary about where to begin. However, I decided to volunteer to do the assignment first with the initial notion of just getting the assignment “over with.” But fortunately, this assignment turned out to be quite a delight.
I believe I’ve never checked out an online chemistry/science journal, nor ever picked one up to read because I’m intimidated by the content. Also, I never really knew where to look – what information is legit? what information pertains to my interests? what are my interests? The list of questions is basically endless and I credit them for my procrastination. But now, thanks to this assignment, I realize that much of what is out there isn’t really intimidating at all. And actually, I felt really awesome when I understood the science that was being discussed in the article (I know 3 years ago not a word of the journal would have made sense to me and it was great to put my education to use). So I encourage you all, do not be intimidated by science journals – there are a lot of neat things amongst the pages that might just spark your interest.
This assignment also opened the door to the wonderful world of Mercury. While working on the assignment, Dr. Kassel showed me a lot of cool things that can be done to manipulate images. So I suggest you all make sure to download a copy of CSD and get acquainted with the program (its available in the Chem Office and it only takes a few minutes).
As far as the actual writing portion of the assignment is concerned, I believe it helped me recognize my weak points. This assignment has showed me the importance of learning to think and read in chemical/scientific terms and then summarize the article in a scientific manner. It’s important to note who your audience is and learn how to adapt your writing accordingly. Also, because of this assignment I was required to think and read chemistry outside the classroom – an important part to developing as a well-rounded Chemistry major.
So all in all this assignment turned out to be quite a developmental project – I didn’t just read about some metal complex and then summarize 8 pages for your personal enjoyment. I learned a lot about my own abilities, using a weblog, using Mercury, and the importance of exploring, reading, and writing about chemistry outisde the context of class.
Embrace the assignment! And if anyone needs help with anything don’t hesitate to ask.