Questions About the Homework Assignment

An adequate submission for the portion of the homework assignment that requires students to submit a question to be covered during the Tuesday lecture (or be addressed individually) follows:

If you are unable to answer a question or are unsure of the answer, identify the part(s) of question/answer that you do not understand and/or cannot answer.

Record the following with your completed homework answers:

• The question number, example number, or page and paragraph of the text
• What part of the question/answer or text you do understand
• Which specific part of the question/answer is confusing, needs clarification, or explanation. Please quote. Explain what makes the part confusing or requiring reconciliation.
• Which specific pages you believe are most related to the question and how you attempted to resolve the issue

The above format should be used when presenting questions to your professor. If all requirements are met the student will obtain credit for the “send in question” portion of the the assignment.

If You Have No Questions:
If you are the rare individual without questions, please select one(or more) problem from the homework set as a recommendation for which problems the class should review in class, on Tuesday. Indicate why this/these questions are particularly important to review in terms of key topics and course goals. Be sure to indicate which topicS the problem is related.

Short Answer Rubric

I. General Rubric

An award is granted if the response(s):
1) includes a clear and correct thesis that directly addresses the question with a basic explanation, and/or includes a sketch of the computations if the answer requires a computation,
2) includes two supports to the correct answer and is free from any substantial errors. The supports do not need to directly address the question. Each support can be any of the 5 suggestions for adding a little depth.

Individual supports can include:

a) a developed description of the evidence or argument in favor of your answer which relates to concepts covered in the course,
b) a drawing or diagram of the related concept with a textual description (see III),
c) the importance, how it relates to other concepts or tools, or its interpretation,
d) an explanation of why an alternative solution would be either reasonable or incorrect. If you give an incorrect example, explain why some people might select that solution incorrectly. For instance, what common misconception might lead them to select that response.
e) a related example, which can be real or imaginary. If you make one up, make it an extremely good fit to the solution, concept, or point you are making.

Examples are great. They can be real or hypothetical. They can be examples of the issue or an example of how you might improve the presented situation in the question. When you use an example, it shows that you can transfer your knowledge to relevant situations.

II. Special Homework Expectations
Where applicable,  these questions should be addressed:

  • What is the biological hypothesis (or question)? [this is always required for a 4 Step problem]
  • What is the point and interval estimate of the key parameter in the problem? [This applies after we discuss confidence intervals]
  • What is a useful statistical null hypothesis? (One that if falsified, would be consistent with the biological hypothesis) [This applies after we discuss significance testing]
  • What is the P-value for this problem? [This applies after we discuss significance testing]
  • How do sampling distributions relate to this problem? [This applies after we discuss significance testing]
  • How strong is the evidence against the the statistical null hypothesis? [This applies after we discuss significance testing]
  • What can we conclude about the biological hypothesis?

If some items are not applicable you should be able to explain why.

III. Drawings and Figures
Verbally explain your drawings/figures.

IV. Constraints
As appropriate, writing constraints apply to assessments.

Here are some examples of developed answers.

Short Reports
Student Generated Comments
(See the Instructor Generated Suggestions Here)

Discuss the patterns in the figures in the textUse figures that are useful in supporting the conclusions
Use past tense when describing the statistical findings
Keep consistent with significant figures
Summarize the results
Answer the question directly and explicitly in the text
Explain why you did a subset analysis (ie analyze part of the whole data set, separately).

Include methods descriptions unless it is related to justification of the conclusions.
List the same statistics in the text and the figures
Be redundant

Words to Avoid
Illustrates, shows, as seen in…

Words to Use Correctly in the Context of Biology 200 Content
Bias, Precision, Accuracy, Skew

If you discuss accuracy, be sure to indicate the magnitude and direction