# Sample Proposal: Independent Inquiry

## College of Natural Sciences

Please direct all questions about the flag proposal process to the Center for the Core Curriculum.

### BIO 337: Research Methods: UTeach

School of Biological Sciences

How does the proposed course satisfy the flag requirements?*

All students in Research Methods complete four independent inquiries. The first is a one-week home inquiry, the second is a 4-week laboratory inquiry, the third is a two-week survey, and the fourth is a six-week final project that usually involves laboratory work, but may involve mathematical modeling. Each inquiry is designed and implemented by the student in consultation with course instructors. In addition to writing papers on each of their inquiries, students give three oral presentations: Inquiry II results, Research on a Topic of Social Importance, and Inquiry IV results.

Describe typical assignments related to Independent Inquiry.

The following are Inquiry IV topics from Spring 2010. All were chosen by the students in consultation with instructors. Does the probability distribution of craters on the moon depend on proximity to a volcano? Calculate the height a person reaches when jumping off a force plate from the force measured on the force plate. Measure the motion of heat through a metal rod sitting on a hot plate at one end and model the results mathematically. Determine the gravitational constant from streak photographs of a marble fired from a projectile launcher. Make sure to correct parallax in the photographs Find the force exerted by soap bubbles stretching between a metal ring and the surface of a liquid as a function of height Check Boyle’s Law for the equation of state of air carefully and determine if there should be corrections. If so, find the best mathematical representation of the corrections. Are the solubility products of calcium and magnesium the same? How does plant growth depend upon soil alkalinity?

Please explain how at least one-third of the course grade is based on content related to Independent Inquiry.

60% of the final course grade comes from evaluations of the written inquiries, proposals for the inquiries, and oral presentations. The balance comes from homework and attendance.

*The questions on the Independent Inquiry proposal form have changed since this proposal was submitted. Please see the Independent Inquiry Proposal Tips page for the current questions.