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BIOL& 211 (Majors Cellular Biology)

Fall 2021, Instructor Amy Lawrence


Lab Exercise 2: Dissecting a peer-reviewed paper


Watch Lab Video 2 for this week (also in Panopto Recordings) for some great instruction on using the OC databases and searching for references.

Use the OC Databases to find one peer-reviewed/scholarly journal article related to biology.  The reference you choose may be something you decide to use for your research project, or on another biology-related topic entirely.  

Use the reference to answer the following questions.  To submit your work, use the text box or file upload (.doc or .pdf file).  You do NOT need to attach the actual reference, I can find it myself if I have questions.

1.  How did you find the reference?  List the database and search terms you used.

2.  What date was the reference published?

3.  Provide a citation in APA format.  See the very helpful guides here and here.   Remember, if you use any kind of automatic citation/reference generator, make sure you proof-read what it generates.

4.  Review the article and identify/briefly describe the main following main parts of the paper.

  1. Question.  What is the main question raised by the paper?  Where in the paper (what section, or page) was this found?  Was it explicitly stated?
  2. Hypothesis.  Briefly describe the hypothesis of the paper.  Was it explicitly stated?  (Hint:  It probably isn't.)
  3. Methods/Experimental Design.  Were these clearly stated?  Is there enough detail that one could (with the appropriate tools and experience) repeat this experiment?
  4. Results.  This section may be lengthy, but identify one or two main figures or tables that best answered the question, or supported/refuted the hypothesis.  You can very briefly describe the type of results/data used to answer the question.
  5. Discussion.  Were the results placed in context?  Name one follow-on question presented in the Discussion.