Student queries

G÷ran SahlÚn
Wed, 19 Jan 2000 14:00:17 +-100

Odonata -

Dear all,

John Belshe has absolutely got a point. As a teacher myself I have come across many "reports" looking suspiciously like something directly downloaded from the internet... These reports are of course always returned with some innocent remarks on sources, and often asking the student to compare other authors as well... This usually results in something more or less "home-made".

But it is a problem, though. I have met many students who, having very little fondness of books, collects all their information from the web. This, of course, means a great loss of knowledge since only a fraction of all information is available on-line today. Perhaps it is time to re-introduce more books in school?

Anyway, this is NOT to say that students shouldn't put their questions on the dragon list, but merely to imply that there are numerous (well... some) textbooks on dragonflies today in which to find the references sought for. All students should be able to get hold of such a textbook. Pester your supervisors for a copy - they probably have them in their locked-up book-collections... And if you really have a specific question that you have been unable to find an answer to in the textbooks - please do put it on the web! That's when your research begins to get interesting! Being a student means that you should spend a lot of time doing research, which includes looking through odo books searching for obscure references...

Best wishes from a cold and somewhat snowy Sweden

G÷ran SahlÚn PhD
Systematic Zoology,
Evolutionary Biology Centre,
Uppsala University,
Norbyvńgen 18D
SE-752 36 Uppsala
tel.: +46-18 471 6480
fax: +46-18 471 6457

- - -

Dragon list,

        As a university instructor, I have always been hesitant to simply
answer student questions with an answer they could learn about themselves
if they spent some time in the library.  My answers have usually been a
reference they could seek.
        I bring this up because I have seen several, one this morning,
requests for information which the inquirer could answer for themselves in
a library.  If they do not have access to a library, they should be
requesting reprints or references and not simply information to solve their
question of the moment.


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