21 November 2012
It’s been a while since my last blog and now we are deep into paper-writing period. Every year it happens that the end of the semester sneaks up on you and you realize that you have 5+ papers to write and it can be pretty daunting. One of the many papers I’m currently writing is on the second century physician Galen and his ideas about the circulatory system for the fourth-year Humanities class “Science in the Modern World”. While many students chose to write their papers on some facet of modern science, I thought it would be interesting to contrast the work of an ancient scientist with modern science to the end of both lending credence to what the ancient scientists were doing and better understanding what modern science aims at. One really interesting thing I’ve learnt is the degree of genius necessary for the quality of scientific observation since a balance between theory and experimentation must be reached to arrive at an accurate conclusion. Scientists constantly straddle the gap between what they observe and how that fits into a theoretical framework and while I’m still researching this paper it seems that this point of intersection is hardly an obvious one.
One piece of advice that I’d like to give students both in the humanities or even just thinking about University next year is the importance of early research. Carleton has excellent facilities at your disposal for getting new and up-to-date articles and a quick search on Scholars’ Portal will turn up much of interest. The only problem is that you have to request the articles via Racer for them to be sent to Carleton. Yet, if you start thinking about your papers at the beginning of term and request a few articles this can not only provide you with ideas you might not otherwise have access to but it will help develop your ideas over a longer period of time, both improving your paper and the degree to which you are engaged in the classes you’re taking.