The site is a page from the Smithsonian magazine, a publication designed for the general public. The short article describes the “inaccuracies” in the portrayal of certain dinosaurs in the film Jurassic Park. The author describes how the novelists and film makers may have interpreted the paleontological data resources incorrectly.
Type of Material:
Instructors could assign this article or students could use it for research.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
None stated. This would be a great article for instructors teaching about the intricacies of nomenclature or the use and abuse of science in popular culture.
Target Student Population:
High-school or undergraduate students.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
None stated; however, having seen the movie Jurassic Park would be important to understanding the article. A working knowledge on naming fossils and living organisms will be helpful.
Evaluation and Observation
The information is high quality and detailed on this topic
The article provides a good basic background about the material
It describes arcane aspects of nomenclature in an interesting and accessible way
There are no sources or references given for people who might want to go farther
Although there is some organization within sections, it is not clear if this approach follows traditional pedagogy for teaching this subject
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The article is well written and engaging, especially for a relatively arcane topic
Material promotes conceptual understanding
A student researching this topic would find it useful as a resource
The paleontological story told in this article would make an excellent assignment for instructors teaching biological nomenclature or how science and society interact
Users who encounter this site may not understand its utility
The materials, and the way they are presented are very straightforward
The information presented is very narrow and not deep enough to meet academic requirements
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
The website is easy to use and the article is graphically nicely presented (with a large print block at the beginning and the full article below)
There are numerous ways of sharing this article provided, from printing, to email to many social media platforms