Assignment 2 banner

Web Surfing

Review some basic information about searching the web and read about how internet search engines work before starting your research for the following written assignment. This additional online set of tutorials has information for both the novice and the advanced web surfer. Take a look at them. The writing assignment is due by midnight January 28, 2016.

Part I. Comparing Different Search Engines.

Search for information on chlorofluorocarbons (a general subject) using the following search engines: Google, Google Scholar (enter via "Chemical Literature" Research Guide you were shown during our class at the library),SurfWax, Ixquick, refseek, BASE, Science Direct and Yippee . The "Making the Net Easier" website is a list of 150+ different web search engines. Choose any two other search engines from this list to add to your search. Do the same exercise for the compound Buckminsterfullerene. Write a document that compares and contrasts how the various search tools responded to your chlorofluorocarbon search; how they responded to your buckminsterfullerene search; and then compare and contrast the two searches. You must do an in depth discussion with examples. The most important part of this assignment (and the bulk of your grade) is to analyze the outcomes of your searches and coherently present the results in a narrative form. Your paper will be evaluated for grammar and spelling as well as your intellectual content. Remember that you can always take your writing to the Writing Center if you would like some input on how to improve your writing skills. While writing your paper, answer the questions:

  • Were some search tools more efficient than others?
  • How relevant were the "hits"?
  • Were the listed order of hits indicative of how meaningful the returned documents were to your search?
  • Were the documents returned by your search from reliable sources (remember ANYONE can post ANYTHING on the web!) Read the document "Evaluating Internet Sources" to learn more about how to determine the reliability of internet documents

Try narrowing your search with a couple of the search engines by using multiple concepts (use information you gleaned from your initial search to develop multiple concept terms.) Describe the multiple concept search terms that you used. Were you able to improve your ratio of good hits to not so good ones?

Part II. Finding Specific Information

Use any search engines to answer the following questions:

  • Taxol is a natural product that has been approved by the FDA for medical treatment.
    1. From what natural source found in the Pacific Northwest was it originally isolated? Taxol has been approved for treatment of what two ailments?
    2. Under what tradename does Bristol-Myers Squibb Company market taxol?
  • Frederick Sanger has won, not one, but two Nobel Prizes.
    1. In what years was he a recipient?
    2. For what scientific work was he honored?
  • Locate three jobs chemistry related jobs for which to apply (you don't actually have to apply, just pretend that you are going to apply.) Research the company, and using this information, rank the positions in order of your preference and explain how you arrived at your rankings (there is no right or wrong answer here but you need to give a well defined reason for your choices including information you learned about each company, agency or organization that make it a good fit for you.)
  • Write a letter of application for your first choice position (you should do some research on how to write a job application letter.)

This assignment is to be turned in electronically as a pdf file which you can generate directly from your word processor if you are using Microsoft Word or Pages (a Mac specific word processor). Do not submit a .doc or .pages document. You will turn the assignment in using the file upload link provided on the Ch 350 Moodle site. Your letter should be a facsimile of a real letter of application complete with letterhead and turned in as a separate pdf file. Both Microsoft Word and Pages have templates that you can use for generating letters. When you turn in your files, it MUST be named using the following conventions (replace ONLY the Yourname part of the file name from the examples!):

Assign2_YourlastnameFirstinitial_websearching.pdf (Example: assign2_courtneya_websearching.pdf)

Assign2_YourlastnameFirstinitial_letter.pdf (Example: assign2_courtneya_letter.pdf)