Musings for the week of April 3rd

General Notes: We are past the last HQV date, so I cannot drop you from the course.  However, if you do not participate (as outlined in the syllabus), you will receive a grade of 0.0 (E) for failure to participate if you do not withdraw before the term deadline.  Several people have received emails this week alerting them to this eventuality.

CEM131: Exam day today, I know, I love it too (come on, only two problems NEED a calculator). Hopefully it wasn’t too traumatic and I plan on getting them graded by Wednesday.  Overall the class is going well and we will start Chapter 7 (Gases) on Wednesday.  The lab will be Lab 11 (Molar Mass of Butane) on Wednesday.

On the labs last week I gave you a plus/minus error of one on the hydration number for Copper (II) Sulfate.  The actual value was five (5) water molecules for each formula unit of Copper (II) Sulfate, so 4-6 were acceptable. Any value above or below that cost you a point (every group was within two), due to sloppy lab technique (resulting in a poor determination).

BIO220: Exam Day on Tuesday, I hope you worked through the Genetics problems… well if you didn’t, I’ll know soon enough.  We also have lab on Tuesday where we will do the second Gram Stain test and the Second Streak Plate Evaluation.  Thursday we will start in Chapter 12, please read through the Fungi section.

I’m finishing up the labs right now, and I must say that I am rather unimpressed with the depth of short answer responses and the quality of mathematical calculations (forgetting to calculate original concentrations from diluted values, medians, etc.).  When I ask you to do some research and compare the behavior of three different microbes in a system, “they are different so they respond differently” is a pretty crappy answer.

BIO161: You guys don’t have an exam this week, but you do owe me a formal lab.  The class will be working on Chapter 34 (Protostomes) this week.  You should be at least through the introduction of the chapter by Tuesday.  We are on track for the next exam to be on schedule (4/13).

The overall grades have been updated and include all materials to this point (yes, even the lab quiz).  Speaking of the lab quiz, the overall median was 17/25 and the high was 22/25, that gave a curve of +2 (took the median to ~74%).