On Becoming a Scientist
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On Becoming a Scientist

On the 25 and 26 of September 1992, the University of California San Francisco and the San Francisco Exploratorium presented a public symposium entitled "Winding your way through DNA." This program was designed to educate the public and to encourage a dialogue about the scientific possibilities and the social puzzles of recombinant DNA technology.

Following the symposium, a team of high school and college teachers, ethicists, historians, and scientists decided to create a series of videos that would provide a personal approach to science, its applications, and its ethical, legal. and societal issues. The second in this series is Winding Your Way Through DNA: On Becoming a Scientist, a videotape intended for high school and college classes and public education programs.

This videotape is designed to portray science students and scientists as real, approachable individuals and to dispel the myth that they are all white men who wear glasses and pocket protectors and only work in dark laboratories. The video also examines the reasons why people choose a career in science and the skills that are needed to become a scientist.

Because the video focuses on several different aspects of science and scientific careers. the projects and activities in this teacher's guide have been grouped into three categories for easier use. The Life of a Scientist projects help students discover what it is like to be a scientist. how scientists work, and how scientists apply their knowledge to societal problems. The Science Career projects allow students to explore the wide range of career opportunities available in the biological sciences and show students ways in which scientific knowledge is used on the job. And the Thinking Like a Scientist activities are step-by-step activities that illustrate aspects of the scientific process and scientific thinking.

We invite you to use these materials to introduce the possibility of a career in science to your students and to give them a better understanding of who scientists are und what they do.


We wish to thank the following individuals, corporations, and foundations for the generous funding that has made this educational videotape and curriculum project possible:

  • Anonymous donor
  • Genentech Foundation for Biomedical Sciences
  • Brook H Byers of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
  • Chiron Corporation
  • University of California Systemwide Biotechnology Research and Education Program
  • Teacher Education in Biology Program, San Franciscco State University
  • Benno C Schmidt
  • Berlex Biosciences
  • With additional support from:
  • Amgen Inc
  • Geron Corporation
  • Gilead Sciences, inc
  • SyStemix, inc

Also Available From PyramidMedia:

Winding your way through DNA

  • Part 1: Stories From the Scientists
  • Purt 3: The Promise & Perils of Biotechnology: Genetic Testing

To order additional copies of On Becoming a Scientist write or call:

Fullfilment Department
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
10 Skyline Drive
Plainview, New York 11803-2500

1-800-843-4388 (Continental US/Canada)
516-349-1930 (All other locations)
516-349-1946 (Fax)


© 1996 by The Regents of the University of California

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