This semester I enrolled in English 211. I signed up for the class to satisfy an elective requirement. I am very pleased with the amount of knowledge I gained by taking this class. I was able to review writing skills that I have not used in a long time. I am able to apply the skills learned to my other classes that I am currently taking. I found all of the writing assignments to be challenging. I have listed below the major writing assignments completed in the class and how they helped me to become a more efficient writer.

The first writing assignment that we conducted was a progress report. The progress report was an interesting assignment. I had to develop a progress report based on a Computer Installation project we were assigned. It was written for the Vice President of the company. It allowed for individual creativity. Given a basis for the assignment, I was able to come up with my own ideas. The progress report had a specific outline and guidelines to follow. This assignment required me to organize my thoughts in chronological order. I had to pay close attention to detail. In addition, I had to describe the project, work completed, work planned for the future and an appraisal of progress. I can see how this assignment relates to the “real world” and the workplace. These types of reports are used in many job professions. I believe that it was important to give the class this assignment in order to gain necessary skills to use in the future.

A second assignment that I found helpful in this class was the set of instructions. We had to write the first set of instructions individually. Later in the semester, the class was assigned a second instruction assignment. For the second set of instructions, we were assigned to work in partners. This assignment was more “in depth” and accurate in comparison to the first set we wrote. We had to think of every aspect of our project and include every minor detail. It had to be extremely organized and follow a proper format. I liked the fact that we were able to chose our own topic to write the instructions on. It made the assignment more interesting. I also like the ability to work with a partner. I think working with a partner helps to get more ideas and different viewpoints.

A third influential assignment in the class was the Literature Review/Annotated Bibliography. This assignment was the most difficult for me. It had to be written in APA Format. I find APA format to be very confusing and hard to remember all of the rules. Mr. Johansen did a great job at reviewing the rules of APA and answering questions. The handouts given to us were extremely helpful and I will definitely hold on to them ( they have been useful for my writing assignments in other classes). This assignment helped me to learn how to use articles in my writing. I also gained more experience retrieving articles from the school library database. I became more proficient in writing article summaries. I also gained more experience and knowledge of how to integrate quotes from articles into my writing and how to cite them properly.

Lastly, the Research paper was very a very important assignment. I really liked the fact that we were able to use the same topics from our Literature Review and expand on information to write a research report. Using the same topic, allowed me to feel as if I learned a great deal about the subject (Generation Y workers). Honestly, I did not even know that major issue existed and that experts were taking the time to study them until this assignment was given. I learned how to break articles down and pull out the important points and aspects. I gained more experience using citations and APA format. I enjoyed the research paper and learned a great deal from it.

The climate and atmosphere of the classroom was comfortable. I felt that I could ask any question that I had and my questions always were answered. The classroom discussions allowed the classmates to get to know each other, which I think is important. It was a comfortable, friendly, fun, humorous, atmosphere. I have to add, sometimes the humor got out of control. I believe the teacher was disrespected by the students at times. It is perfectly fine to have a sense of humor, however respect should always be maintained for teachers and others.

Overall, I am very satisfied with the information that I gained from this English class. I am glad that I enrolled in the class, even though I was taking the course to satisfy another course. I believe that I needed to review my English writing skills so that I can succeed in all of my future college classes. I will remember the information that I learned and this class definitely had an impact on me. Mr. Johansen is a wonderful teacher. He is very knowledgeable of the course content and found better ways to teach the material. I enjoyed going to class everyday.

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Video Games in Education:Why They Should Be Used and How They Are Being Used

How can Educators reach Children who have been called the Net Generation? This question is asked due concern of the United States’ ability to sustain scientific and technological superiority in the future. In 2003, a movement began to integrate video games in teaching and training. This movement is referred to as, “serious games”. Video games have changed the way the new generation socializes and entertains. Games are a primary focus in the lives of the net generation. According to Annetta, “Games are not just played: they are talked about, read about, fantasized about, cheated at, altered, and become models for everyday life and for the formation of subjectivity and intersubjectivity.” (2008, 230). Games can be used for educational purposes which needs political and financial support from the federal government. One example of an educational game is called “Immune Attack”. This game was devised to teach students biology. The purpose of the game is to teach an immune system how to properly function or die. Each level includes different cells and pathogens. I think that this idea of teaching students by the use of video games would have a great impact on today’s students. My son, for example is seven years old and in second grade. He scores above average in math and reading. He spends a significant amount of time playing the Lego video games. He learns the games quickly and memorizes the puzzles and methods involved.  Watching the way that he learns by using the video games has impressed me to a great level. The games require mathematic skills and reading. I believe the use of games have increased his knowledge in these subjects. This relates to Annetta’s statement that, “Childhood is a time for constructing the relationship between the world through play.” (2008, 232).

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Cell Structure and Function

This chapter begins with an outline of information. All living things are made of basic units of life. These units of life are known as cells. Some organisms are made up of one single cell and others are made of many different cells. Cells are units of structure and function. They come from pre-existing cells. They consist of an outer membrane, interior nucleus, and a cytoplasm mass around the nucleus. Figure 2.1 shows the structure of a typical animal cell. Functions of a cell are carried out by organelles. The membranes (cell and plasma) control the passage of materials into and out of the cell. A cell wall surrounds the plasma membrane. Figure 2-2 on page 318 shows the fluid mosaic model of a membrane. Definitions of the endoplasmic reticulum, rough endoplasmic reticulum, ribosomes, Golgi apparatus, mitochondria, lysosomes, flagella and cilia are found on page 318. All of these terms refer to the way a cell transports materials. The cytoskeleton is described on page 319, which provides cellular support and movement. The nucleus is located near the center of the cell. Surrounding the nucleus is the membrane. Pores allow materials to leave the nucleus. The genetic makeup of the cells is located in the chromosomes. On page 320 a comparison chart shows the difference between animal cells and plant cells. In plants and animals the cells are organized into tissues. Tissues have a specific job and are located in the organs. The movement in and out of the cells is described on page 320-321. Cellular respiration includes cell metabolism, anaerobic pathways, Krebs cycle, Electron Transport Chain, Oxidative Phosphorylation and Biosynthesis. On page 323 a chart summarizing key events in Aerobic Metabolism following Glycolysis per Glucose Molecule is shown. At the end of the chapter, three problem solving questions are presented along with a summarizing answer to the questions. The information regarding cells was very informative. All of the key terms were shown in bold print and the context was easy to understand.

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The Science of Marine Biology

The chapter begins with an introduction to Marine Biology describing its importance. Marine life contributes to human life in many ways. Some examples include medicine, tourism, and money. Marine biology is related to the study of Oceanography. The study of Marine Biology began in ancient times. As time progressed, scientists learned more about the ocean and life that existed in it. One major voyage noted in history is the Challenger Expedition. During this expedition the ocean’s sea floor was investigated. The ship named HMS Challenger sailed off in 1872 and collected an abundance of information on organisms and sea-floor life. The information was so great that it took nineteen years to publish the results. This expedition also created standards for the studying of the ocean. After this expedition, scientists began to collect and preserve live specimens form the ocean in laboratories. After the start of World War II, sound navigation ranging was developed. This is the process of listening to the sea by underwater echo. After World War II, the first scuba diving was conducted.

Today, marine biology is just as important as it was in the past. The growing field of technology has allowed new elements of the ocean to be found and researched. Satellites are used to track ocean currents. Remote Sensor applications are used, such as electronic buoys, which can track oil spills.

On page 198 the author discusses how the field of science has lead to the advances in Marine Biology. The set of procedures used by scientists to make discoveries is called the scientific method. Scientific conclusions are based on observations. Scientists use two different types of thinking. One type is called induction, meaning to arrive at conclusions by using separate observations. The other way is deduction is when scientists make predictions based on statements. These two ways of thinking lead scientists to developing a hypothesis. The hypothesis is then tested to be considered true or false. A hypothesis has to testable to be considered valid. If it is not testable, the hypothesis is invalid. The author gives an example. If a hypothesis states “somewhere in the ocean there are mermaids”, and there are no mermaids to be found then then the hypothesis is invalid. Sometimes scientists have to decide between options of two or more alternative hypotheses. Scientists use experiments to test and evaluate the different hypotheses. When scientists are testing the hypothesis there are many factors that can arise, which will affect the observations. The scientists refer to those factors as variables. To prevent a variable from having an affect on an experiment they keep the variable from changing or make sure that any changes made are performed on both groups.  This is called a controlled experiment. For example, if a scientist is testing how water temperature affects the growth of mussels, they would give all the mussels the same food and that would be considered the controlled experiment.

Throughout the chapter I found many pictures that caught my attention. The pictures included captions below them to further describe the purpose.  The map on page 200 Shows Ocean observing systems that are installed or planned to be installed around the world. There are articles inserted throughout the chapter for further reading on the topics discussed. Overall, the science of marine biology plays such an important role and is a growing area of research. It is important to understand how the research is conducted and the hypothesis, experiments, and conclusions are found.

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Generation Y Workers

The first article I read was named, “Brace Yourself, Here Comes Generation Y”. The writer of this article believes that the qualities that generation Y workers posses lead to a high stress work environment. Most experts consider generation Y to be those who were born from 1980 to 2001. Some alternate names for this generation are Millennium Generation, Millennial, the Entitled Generation or the Echo Boom. The main focus of this article is how generation Y workers affect the healthcare related field, although one may also see how these qualities may also have an impact on all areas of the job field. Generation Y is beginning to enter the nursing workforce. They are joining the workers of Generation X, which also includes Baby Boomers, and veterans. The author states that the characteristics and observations stated may be stereotypes and not true to every person, however, from looking at statistics and evaluations the author has come to these conclusions.

When observing a generation this author looks at characteristics, values, strengths and weaknesses. Positive aspects of generation Y include racial diversity and global awareness. They like entertainment. They adapt to new situations quickly. They can handle the pressures of multitasking. They have a great ability to process information quickly. They are great listeners. They thrive on new challenges and have teamwork skills. Generation Y workers have the technical knowledge and tools to have successful careers. In the section, “Formative Influences and Core values” the author lists the events that occurred during the lives of the Generation Y that have had an impact on their personalities.  Some of these events include the Iraq War, rise of AIDS/HIV, and 24 hour Media.

Generation Y workers show some negative traits as well. They seem to expect others to do things for them. They also lack experience and organization skills. They dislike reading. Some stressors that Generation Y nurses posses include work schedules, professional image and learning styles. Schools that Generation Y workers attended emphasize success and this can cause them to feel like failures. The positive and negative traits are discussed in the sections called, “Why Should We Brace Ourselves” and “Stressors”.

The difference between generation X and Y is great and it can cause conflict in the workplace. Management tends to be those of the Generation X. The generation conflict has shown in studies that the resignation rate may become high. The author referenced another study that shows that nurses under the age of 32 are unsatisfied with their job. The author also speaks about work schedules and how the expectations of Generation Y may affect them in the workplace and how the management of Generation X may accommodate them better by being flexible. The author gives some examples of how the issues and problems can be solved. Orientation should be a requirement of all new nurses entering the field. This will help to prepare them for all of the life changes and how to help eliminate “shock” of such life changes. This information is found in the section named “Orientation Needs.”  Supervisors should also meet and review progress with them often to help steer them away from feeling like a failure. They should focus on the “right fit” and “right time” which is discussed in “Performance Appraisals”. Author and speaker, Michele Deck has many ideas on how to help the Generation Y workers. One idea is giving them many breaks between jobs and offering something fun during those breaks. Management should also change the dress codes due to the fact that Generation Y has more tattoos, Multi colored hair and piercings than the previous generation.

Overall generation Y has many positive and negative traits. The problems that arise in the nursing workplace can cause conflict but there are many ways both Generation X and Y can work on resolving these issues. Generation Y has is very educated and has great experience in technology. They can really help advance in the workplace and can bring many new concepts and idea. I believe this author did a great job explaining the two generations and their similarities and differences, I found the article very informative. The information was easy to comprehend. I think the information will be useful towards my assignment.

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“Science and Fuzzy Objects” Specializing in Sociology, pg 216-224

The start of the chapter begins with a quotation as follows. ‘It is difficult to paint a clear picture of a fuzzy object: Ludwig Josef Wittgenstein, (1959). Many sociology students like things to be “cut and dry”. However, that is not always how things are. Physicist Werner Heisenberg made an argument that stunned many physical scientists. The acceptance of the existence of fuzzy objects is a discipline that many scientists have to learn in their career. After the introduction, the paragraph titled, “Dividing up the task” breaks the information down to inform how sociologists approach their research. Table 3.1 shows popular topic areas within sociology. The chapter discusses the three major theoretical perspectives: functionalist, conflict, and symbolic interactionist. Each perspective is broken down into sections with examples provided. On page 221, there is an overview of the perspectives and the conflicts among them. Many sociologists divide their discipline to distinguish between different levels of analysis (micro sociology and macro sociology). I found this chapter informative: however, I do not understand how it applies to this class. As I read the chapter, I clearly understood the content, just did not comprehend the purpose or intent.

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Health Psychology: Stress, Coping, and Well-Being


Chapter eleven begins with a prologue called “So much time, so little time to do it”. This prologue gives a short story about a mother’s busy day and schedule. I can relate to the story. When I read the prologue I felt as if I was reading a story about myself. Stress is the main issue that is discussed in the chapter. Health psychologists have proved a strong relationship between stress and the impact it has on a person’s overall health. Stress produces biological and psychological consequences. The amount of stress in a person’s life can affect their ability to fight illness, disease, and recover from surgery. Some psychophysiological disorders result from stress, which include backaches, skin disorders and high blood pressure (pg. 253).  When a person has a response to stress, there are three stages (alarm and mobilization, resistance, and exhaustion). This theory is known as the General Adaption Syndrome Model.  Table 11-1 on page 254 includes an evaluation to determine how stressful your life is. Stress has three major consequences. The first consequence is direct physiological results. Second, is harmful behavior and the third consequence is a decline in health.  Examples of these three consequences are found on page 255. The three categories of stressors are Cataclysmic events, personal stressors and background stressors.  Coping with stress is very difficult, but there are things that an individual can do to become better at it. Some coping methods include problem solving, positive thinking and social support.  Stress and behavior has also been linked to heart disease and cancer. Psychological factors that relate to physical illness are also discussed. Throughout the chapter vocabulary words are highlighted and defined. In order to obtain further research, website links are posted throughout the chapter. On page 272 a recap of all the important facts pertaining to the chapter are highlighted and emphasized, thus helping me to remember key points of the information. At the end of the chapter questions are presented, relating to the story in the prologue. The questions helped me to take what I learned from the chapter and apply it to a real life situation. I found this chapter very informative. Everyday, I find myself feeling stressed. I have three kids, work and school; therefore, I can relate to the chapter and learned a great deal from it.

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Writing, Reading, and Researching in the Natural Sciences

Reading this chapter helped me to understand the importance of writing in relation to science. The chapter is divided into separate topics, which are very easy to comprehend. After each topic there is a brief statement of information. Upon reading, I found that all of the important elements are highlighted in shaded boxes, thus making the main points clear. The text clearly states the four main genres of writing in the natural sciences. The steps that are listed for drafting, revising, editing and proofreading are clearly stated with examples that I can relate to. Following the introduction the chapter proceeds in further detail to describe the different styles of writing and common features. The use of examples helps me understand when reading the strategies for reading difficult texts. As the chapter continues with evaluating sources, internet sources, integrating sources, and preparing reference pages, many visual examples are used. Overall, I find this chapter extremely easy to comprehend. The information is clearly stated and main points are emphasized in good detail.

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