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Tweaked science textbook diagrams boost student understanding

Life cycle diagrams are ubiquitous in science textbooks, and they may be due for some updates, according to a new study. The findings show that simple design changes in science textbook diagrams can have a dramatic impact on the ability of undergraduate students to understand key biology concepts. “We were shocked by the study results,” says Jennifer...

Thu Apr 18, 2024 18:51
Why do we die? Do we have to?

On this episode of the Big Brains podcast, Nobel laureate Venki Ramakrishnan digs into why humans die—and how we can live longer. They’re perhaps the oldest questions in the science: Why do we die? And could we find a way to live forever? But for decades, anti-aging research was a “backwater” of the scientific community, considered too fanciful and...

Thu Apr 18, 2024 18:30
How can physics become more diverse?

A new paper explores the problems with physics culture and provides a road map for making departments in the field more equitable. Physics has long suffered from the perception that the most cutting-edge work is done by lone geniuses, usually white men. It’s a bias that’s seeped into how instructors interact with their students, and even into how...

Thu Apr 18, 2024 16:58
This year’s cicada invasion will be double trouble

For the first time in more than 200 years, two broods of cicadas—Brood XIX, known as the Great Southern Brood, and Brood XIII, known as the Northern Illinois Brood—will emerge from the ground simultaneously this year. Hannah Burrack, professor and chair of the entomology department at Michigan State University, answers questions about what you should...

Thu Apr 18, 2024 16:28
Immigration benefits local economies, including wages

With immigration dominating politics and voter concerns, new research shows immigration boosts local wages and that having neighbors of foreign descent can reduce prejudice. When Americans mark their presidential election ballots later this year, immigration will be top of mind—it’s the nation’s number one issue, according to pollster Gallup. And one...

Wed Apr 17, 2024 23:06
Childhood trauma may stymie muscle function later

Traumatic experiences during childhood may get “under the skin” later in life, impairing the muscle function of people as they age, a new study shows. The study examined the function of skeletal muscle of older adults paired with surveys of adverse events they had experienced in childhood. It found that people who experienced greater childhood adversity,...

Wed Apr 17, 2024 20:44

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