Cell Phone Use and Cancer
A Case Study to Explore the Scientific Method
University of Puerto Rico
In this case study, students analyze a scientific study, first by analyzing news articles reporting on the research and then by reading the original research article. In working through the case, students identify the basic elements of a scientific study; evaluate the study and offer suggestions for improvement; analyze the appropriateness of the headlines of news articles in relation to their content; and compare the accuracy of information offered to the public in a news article with the information presented in a scientific paper. Designed for an introductory course in biological sciences for non-majors, the case could be used in any course that includes the study of the scientific method as well as in a scientific journalism course.
- Identify the basic elements of a scientific research study.
- Evaluate a scientific study and offer suggestions for improvement.
- Analyze the appropriateness of the headlines of news articles in relation to their content.
- Compare the accuracy of information offered to the public in a news article with the information presented in a scientific paper.
- Appreciate the nature of science and how science affects our lives.
KeywordsMobile phones; low level RF; long-term exposure; radiofrequency energy; radio waves and health; electromagnetic fields and public health; acoustic neuroma; tumor growth;
Topical AreasScientific argumentation, Scientific method, Science and the media
Educational LevelHigh school, Undergraduate lower division
Type / MethodsDiscussion, Interrupted, Journal Article
Subject HeadingsBiology (General) | Science (General) | Public Health | Journalism |
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