Archive for the 'Announcements' category

Announcing Dr. Free-Ride's Ethics Line, discreet ethical advice by phone.

Apr 01 2012 Published by under Announcements, Ethical research

Do you have an ethical dilemma?

Are you tired of grappling with it all by yourself?

Would you like to have my capable, experienced hands wrapped around your big, hard ethical problems?

The wait is over!

I'm pleased to introduce the launch of Dr. Free-Ride's Ethics Line, bringing you discreet ethics consultations by phone for the reasonable rate of $1.99/minute.

Let me talk with you about your unique ethical needs. We can do this one-on-one, or, if you're feeling adventurous, we can make it a group thing.

Or, tell me about your ethical fantasies hypotheticals. I can't wait to hear all the details and then describe to you what we will do with them ...

On Dr. Free-Ride's Ethics Line, I will cater to your specific needs.

Want to get down and dirty in the details of federal regulations for research with human subjects or animals? I'll do that with you.

Ready to work up the courage to disclose your significant financial interests to the world? Disclose them to me first on a private, non-judgmental call.

Tired of manipulating that same old figure for each journal submission? I'm prepared to tell you just how naughty you've been, to give you the punishment you've secretly been wanting, and to help you develop a plan to use your new data and figures that show off their natural beauty.

You know you want to. Click the payment button to get started.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who else have you provided with this kind of, um, "consulting" service?

Lots of scientists, with ethical problems of all shapes and sizes. I can't give you their names, though, and I'll never reveal yours -- confidentiality is just that important to me.

Does giving ethical advice for money compromise your objectivity?

Who gave you that idea? And do you really think $1.99/minute is enough to move me from my principles?

Look, if you call Dr. Free-Ride's Ethics Line, I'm going to tell you what you need to hear, not necessarily what you want to hear. It may hurt at first, but you will love it. And if you don't, at $1.99/minute, at least the pain isn't costing you much.

Do you have any conflicts of interest to disclose here?

Not until the big corporations or universities that might be able to use my ethical advice decide to pay for my services. (You know where to find me, big corporations and universities!)

If I'm paying by credit card or PayPal, is our consulting session really confidential?

Yes! The charge for our session will appear on your statement as "Free-Ride's Sexy Phone Time".

Are you ready to show me your ethical quandaries? Click the payment button now to get the ball rolling!

5 responses so far

Opportunities for you to help level the playing field.

At the San Francisco Bay Area She's Geeky conference this past weekend, I had the opportunity to chat with an awesome woman from the Level Playing Field Institute about some of the initiatives that organization is undertaking to understand bias in various work and educational environments and to do something about it.

One of these is an anonymous survey of IT engineers and managers, and employees in tech start-ups. The description of the survey notes:

This anonymous survey explores the experiences and perceptions of employees within the Information Technology industry. ... This survey is part of a research study entitled Understanding Bias and Fairness in IT Environments.

The survey runs through tomorrow (February 3, 2011), but if you complete it, you will receive a $10 Amazon giftcard and be entered to win a 32GB iPad. So if you have some experiences of IT from the inside, why not click over and take the survey?

Even if you're not in IT, there are other initiatives they're doing that may be of interest to you. For example, they run SMASH (Summer Math and Science Honors) Academy, reaching out to high-achieving, low income high school students of color in the Bay Area:

Our goal is to help SMASH students be admitted to top-tier colleges and universities where they can continue their STEM studies.

SMASH scholars spend five weeks each summer in UC Berkeley or Stanford dorms while they are immersed in rigorous classes. They also receive year-round support to stay on track for academic success.

If you know a student who might benefit from this program, the application deadline is February 21, 2011. Here's the FAQ, and the link for students to apply.

The SMASH program is also looking for instructors for these summer classes, with openings posted for instructors of algebra, pre-calculus, calculus, biology, chemistry, physics, and technical writing. If this sounds like you (or someone else you know who might be looking for a summer job), check out the job descriptions. Applications for SMASH instructor positions are all due February 15, 2011.

One response so far

DonorsChoose Science Bloggers for Students Drive 2010.

Note to longtime readers: This post borrows heavily from posts I have written for past DonorsChoose drives. If you get a feeling of deja vu reading it, you've come by it honestly.

In the science-y sectors of the blogosphere, folks frequently bemoan the sorry state of the public’s scientific literacy and engagement. People fret about whether our children are learning what they should about science, math, and critical reasoning. Netizens speculate on the destination of the handbasket in which we seem to be riding.

In light of the big problems that seem insurmountable, we should welcome the opportunity to do something small that can have an immediate impact.

This year, from October 10th through November 9th, a number of science bloggers, whether networked, loosely affiliated, or proudly independent, will be teaming up with DonorsChoose in a philanthropic throwdown for public schools.

DonorsChoose is a site where public school teachers from around the U.S. submit requests for specific needs in their classrooms — from books to science kits, overhead projectors to notebook paper, computer software to field trips — that they can’t meet with the funds they get from their schools (or from donations from their students’ families). Then donors choose which projects they’d like to fund and then kick in the money, whether it’s a little or a lot, to help a proposal become a reality.

Over the last few years, bloggers have rallied their readers to contribute what they can to help fund classroom proposals through DonorsChoose, especially proposals for projects around math and science, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars, funding hundreds of classroom projects, and impacting thousands of students.

Which is great. But there are a whole lot of classrooms out there that still need help.

As economic experts scan the horizon for hopeful signs and note the harbingers of economic recovery, we should not forget that school budgets are still hurting (and are worse, in many cases, than they were last school year, since one-time lumps of stimulus money are gone now). Indeed, public school teachers have been scraping for resources since long before Wall Street’s financial crisis started. Theirs is a less dramatic crisis than a bank failure, but it’s here and it’s real and we can’t afford to wait around for lawmakers on the federal or state level to fix it.

The kids in these classrooms haven’t been making foolish investments. They’ve just been coming to school, expecting to be taught what they need to learn, hoping that learning will be fun. They’re our future scientists, doctors, teachers, decision-makers, care-providers, and neighbors. To create the scientifically literate world we want to live in, let’s help give these kids the education they deserve.

One classroom project at a time, we can make things better for these kids. Joining forces with each other people, even small contributions can make a big difference.

The challenge this year runs October 10 through November 9. We're overlapping with Earth Science Week (October 10-16, 2010) and National Chemistry Week (October 17-23, 2010), a nice chance for earth science and chemistry fans to add a little philanthropy to their celebrations. There are a bunch of Scientopia bloggers mounting challenges this year (check out some of their challenge pages on our leaderboard), as well as bloggers from other networks (which you can see represented on the challenge's motherboard). And, since today is the official kick-off, there is plenty of time for other bloggers and their readers to enter the fray!

How It Works:
Follow the links above to your chosen blogger’s challenge on the DonorsChoose website.

Pick a project from the slate the blogger has selected. Or more than one project, if you just can’t choose. (Or, if you really can’t choose, just go with the “Give to the most urgent project” option at the top of the page.)


(If you’re the loyal reader of multiple participating blogs and you don’t want to play favorites, you can, of course, donate to multiple challenges! But you’re also allowed to play favorites.)
DonorsChoose will send you a confirmation email. Hold onto it; some bloggers (including me) will be offering donors nifty prizes. Details about the prizes and how to get them will be posted here soon!

Sit back and watch the challenges inch towards their goals, and check the leaderboards to see how many students will be impacted by your generosity.

Even if you can’t make a donation, you can still help!
Spread the word about these challenges using web 2.0 social media modalities. Link your favorite blogger’s challenge page on your MySpace page, or put up a link on Facebook, or FriendFeed, or LiveJournal (or Friendster, or Xanga, or …). Tweet about it on Twitter. Sharing your enthusiasm for this cause may inspire some of your contacts who do have a little money to get involved and give.

Here's the permalink to my giving page.

I'll be sharing links to other giving pages, plus details about some fabulous "thank you" prizes, soon. Thanks in advance for your generosity.

One response so far

Job opening to support STEM students who are low-income, first-generation college students, or have disabilities

From Kim Hannula of All of My Faults are Stress-Related comes news of a position being advertised at her fair college as a director of a STEM student services program. Kim says:

We recently received a grant from the Department of Education, to provide support for science/technology/engineering/math students who are low-income, first-generation, or have disabilities. We have a similar program (the Program for Academic Advancement) for students college-wide, but this new program will support math, science, and engineering students. I'm excited about this program - our PAA program does a fantastic job helping students finish their degrees and move on to graduate school or the workforce, and I'm looking forward to working with the STEM3 program.

Here are the details (which you can also find here in the official job posting):

STEM3 Student Support Services Program
Fort Lewis College
Durango, Colorado

Fort Lewis College invites applications for the Director of its new STEM3 Student Support Services Program (a federally funded TRiO program). The position is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education that requires application for renewal every five years. The Director is responsible for organizing and managing support services for 120 academically and/or economically disadvantaged college students. Services include tutoring and academic, career, financial aid, and graduate school advising for eligible students in the STEM disciplines. STEM disciplines include the Sciences (Agriculture, Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Exercise Science, Geology, Geoscience, Physics, and Psychology), Technology (Computer Science Information Systems), Engineering, and Mathematics. The Director will also be responsible for approving expenditures, maintaining budget control and responsibility for the appropriate use of grant funds; facilitating and overseeing development and implementation of effective, objective project evaluation; maintaining data collection and a program database for monitoring and tracking of participant progress and outcomes; working closely with the Dean of the School of Natural and Behavioral Sciences and the FLC STEM faculty to ensure program delivery will meet STEM student needs; overseeing preparation of fiscal and technical reports for the U.S. Dept. of Education and Fort Lewis College; managing and supervising program personnel; providing intrusive academic advising and monitoring, and financial aid advising to a small caseload of participants; attending STEM Department Chair meetings; and serving on relevant college committees.

Minimum qualifications are as follows:

  • Masters Degree in Social Sciences, Education, Educational Administration, Student Personnel Administration, Counseling, or related field and a BS / BA in a STEM discipline (see above)
  • At least four years experience working with disadvantaged students (low-income, first generation, students with disabilities) in higher education
  • At least two years experience designing comprehensive programs that include courses, activities, workshops, tutoring or supplemental instruction, student monitoring, or other services that promote retention of SSS eligible STEM students at the postsecondary level
  • At least two years experience implementing procedures for delivery of services, data collection, program evaluation or similar procedures that enhance program effectiveness and promote student retention in SSS or similar programs at the postsecondary level
  • At least three years of administrative and supervisory experience that includes budget oversight and management.

Preferred qualifications include:

  • Experience as a disadvantaged (first-generation, low-income, or disabled) college student
  • Experience working with a TRiO program or other program with a similar mission
  • Ability to provide ad-hoc tutoring support, especially in mathematics
  • Successful grant writing and grant management experience.

This position is a full-time, 12 month position. Candidates must be willing to work flexible hours including evenings and weekends. Some travel is required to statewide, regional, and/or national meetings. Salary is $42,000 with full range of benefits. The position is anticipated to begin in November 2010. Individuals with experience as a disadvantaged individual or assisting disadvantaged students are encouraged to apply.

Interested and qualified applicants must submit: 1) a letter of interest detailing experience that meets the minimum and preferred qualifications, 2) a current resume, and 3) the names, addresses, email addresses, and telephone numbers of three professional references electronically to:

Deadline: Complete applications must be received no later than 5:00 pm on Monday, October 18, 2010 to receive consideration.

Fort Lewis College does not discriminate on the basis of race, age, color, religion, national origin, gender, disability, sexual orientation, political beliefs, or veteran status. Accordingly, equal opportunity for employment, admission, and education shall be extended to all persons. The College shall promote equal opportunity, equal treatment, and affirmative action efforts to increase the diversity of students, faculty, and staff. People from under-represented groups are encouraged to apply.

If this sounds like your kind of job (and the qualifications sound like you), for heaven's sake apply!

If this sounds like someone you know (especially if he or she is currently on the market), please forward this information.

One response so far

Another turning point, a fork stuck in the road.

With this post, I say goodbye to ScienceBlogs.

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15 responses so far

Americans for Medical Progress names two Hayre Fellows in Public Outreach.

Today Americans for Medical Progress has announced two recipients for academic year 2010-2011 of the Michael D. Hayre Fellowship in Public Outreach, designed to inspire and motivate the next generation of research advocates. This year, I'm especially wowed by their project.

From the AMP press release:
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Standing up for what we believe.


(Click to embiggen)
Tomorrow, April 8, 2010, Pro-Test for Science will be holding its second rally in Los Angeles in support of humanely conducted, ethical animal research and the people who conduct it. Their first rally last April drew approximately 700 people to the streets to support the scientific research that offers hope to patients (both human and veterinary) and their families.
Speaking of Research has details on tomorrow's rally:

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19 responses so far

Programming note.

Apr 01 2010 Published by under Announcements, Passing thoughts, Personal

Observant readers will have noticed that three of my last four posts -- the ones sporting the spiffy Research Blogging icon -- were posts discussing peer-reviewed journal articles. This is a substantially higher proportion of writing about the details of scholarly research than I normally feature on this blog.
But I think I've developed a taste for it.

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11 responses so far

Dialogue about animal research: save the date!

For those of you who have heard me issue calls for dialogue (not debate) on the subject of research with non-human animals -- especially if you're in the Los Angeles area -- I'm pleased to announce that there's an event coming up in February that's aimed at fostering just such a dialogue, in the three-dimensional world. Here's the announcement:

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4 responses so far

You want a post *and* comments??

Sep 17 2009 Published by under Announcements, Technical issues

And really, why wouldn't you? What could have prepared you for the possibility that reading one would make the other vanish, as if there were some kind of blogular wavefunction collapse?
The ScienceBlogs powers that be have been alerted that there's an issue with disappearing comments (if you're reading a post) and disappearing posts (if you're reading the comments). They are busy trying to get the squirrels out of the ductwork (or fix the javascript problem, whichever).
In the meantime, if you're desperate to contribute a comment to a post, or to get the 411 on a post on this blog that has up and vanished, shoot me an email and I'll do what I can to help.

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