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English to Thai: (Some part of) Why Science Majors Change Their Minds (It’s Just So Darn Hard) Detailed field: Education / Pedagogy
Source text - English (Some part of) Why Science Majors Change Their Minds (It’s Just So Darn Hard)
By CHRISTOPHER DREW
LAST FALL, President Obama threw what was billed as the first White House Science Fair, a photo op in the gilt-mirrored State Dining Room. He tested a steering wheel designed by middle schoolers to detect distracted driving and peeked inside a robot that plays soccer. It was meant as an inspirational moment: children, science is fun; work harder.
Politicians and educators have been wringing their hands for years over test scores showing American students falling behind their counterparts in Slovenia and Singapore. How will the United States stack up against global rivals in innovation? The president and industry groups have called on colleges to graduate 10,000 more engineers a year and 100,000 new teachers with majors in STEM — science, technology, engineering and math. All the Sputnik-like urgency has put classrooms from kindergarten through 12th grade — the pipeline, as they call it — under a microscope. And there are encouraging signs, with surveys showing the number of college freshmen interested in majoring in a STEM field on the rise.
But, it turns out, middle and high school students are having most of the fun, building their erector sets and dropping eggs into water to test the first law of motion. The excitement quickly fades as students brush up against the reality of what David E. Goldberg, an emeritus engineering professor, calls “the math-science death march.” Freshmen in college wade through a blizzard of calculus, physics and chemistry in lecture halls with hundreds of other students. And then many wash out.
Studies have found that roughly 40 percent of students planning engineering and science majors end up switching to other subjects or failing to get any degree. That increases to as much as 60 percent when pre-medical students, who typically have the strongest SAT scores and high school science preparation, are included, according to new data from the University of California at Los Angeles. That is twice the combined attrition rate of all other majors.
For educators, the big question is how to keep the momentum being built in the lower grades from dissipating once the students get to college.
“We’re losing an alarming proportion of our nation’s science talent once the students get to college,” says Mitchell J. Chang, an education professor at U.C.L.A. who has studied the matter. “It’s not just a K-12 preparation issue.”
Professor Chang says that rather than losing mainly students from disadvantaged backgrounds or with lackluster records, the attrition rate can be higher at the most selective schools, where he believes the competition overwhelms even well-qualified students.
“You’d like to think that since these institutions are getting the best students, the students who go there would have the best chances to succeed,” he says. “But if you take two students who have the same high school grade-point average and SAT scores, and you put one in a highly selective school like Berkeley and the other in a school with lower average scores like Cal State, that Berkeley student is at least 13 percent less likely than the one at Cal State to finish a STEM degree.”
The bulk of attrition comes in engineering and among pre-med majors, who typically leave STEM fields if their hopes for medical school fade. There is no doubt that the main majors are difficult and growing more complex. Some students still lack math preparation or aren’t willing to work hard enough.
Other deterrents are the tough freshman classes, typically followed by two years of fairly abstract courses leading to a senior research or design project.
“It’s dry and hard to get through, so if you can create an oasis in there, it would be a good thing,” says Dr. Goldberg, who retired last year as an engineering professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and is now an education consultant. He thinks the president’s chances of getting his 10,000 engineers is “essentially nil.”
แต่ความจริงกลับกลายเป็นว่า เด็กนักเรียนระดับชั้นมัธยมต้นและมัธยมปลายเป็นกลุ่มที่สนุกกับการเรียนสาขาวิชาเหล่านี้มากที่สุด พวกเค้าสนุกกับการได้เล่นชุดอุปกรณ์ประกอบเครื่องจักรกลและสิ่งก่อสร้างจำลอง ได้เรียนรู้เรื่องกฎของการเคลื่อนที่ข้อแรก (วัตถุจะมีความเร็วคงที่เสมอตราบใดที่ยังไม่มีแรงภายนอกมากระทำต่อมัน) จากการทดลองทำให้ไข่ตกลงในน้ำ ความตื่นเต้นกระตือรือร้นเหล่านี้เหือดหายไปอย่างรวดเร็วเมื่อเด็กนักเรียนได้เข้ามาสัมผัสกับโลกของความจริงที่ เดวิด อี โกล์ดเบิร์กเรียกมันว่า “การเดินขบวนมรณะแห่งเส้นทางสายคณิต-วิทย์” (the math-science death march) เด็กปีหนึ่งในมหาวิทยาลัยจะต้องเดินฝ่ามรสุมความโหดหินราวกับพายุหิมะของวิชาแคลคูลัส ฟิสิกส์ และเคมี พร้อมๆกันไปกับนักศึกษาหลายร้อยคนอื่นๆ และมีจำนวนมากที่ล้มหายไปในระหว่างทาง
จากการสำรวจข้อมูลล่าสุดของ University of California at Los Angles พบว่า ประมาณร้อยละ 40 ของนักศึกษาที่วางแผนจะเลือกสาขาวิชาเอกด้านวิศวกรรม และ วิทยาศาสตร์ กลับใจเลือกเรียนสาขาวิชาอื่นแทนหรือเรียนไม่จบสาขาใดๆเลยในที่สุด และจำนวนนี้เพิ่มขึ้นเป็นถึง ร้อยละ 60 เมื่อรวมเอาจำนวนนักศึกษาเตรียมแพทย์เข้าไปด้วย ซึ่งจริงๆแล้วเด็กกลุ่มนี้เป็นเด็กที่ได้คะแนน SAT และ คะแนนวิชาพื้นฐานทางวิทยาศาสตร์ สูงที่สุดในสมัยที่เรียนระดับมัธยม มันเป็นจำนวนที่มากกว่าถึงสองเท่าทีเดียวเมื่อเทียบกับอัตราจำนวนนักศึกษาที่เปลียนสาขาวิชาเอกหรือเรียนไม่จบทั้งหมดจากทุกๆสาขาวิชารวมกัน
English to Thai: DETECTION METHODS FOR LEGIONELLA IN COOLING WATER SYSTEMS General field: Science Detailed field: Biology (-tech,-chem,micro-)
Source text - English DETECTION METHODS FOR LEGIONELLA IN COOLING WATER SYSTEMS
Report no 827/1/01
i. BACKGROUND AND MOTIVATION
The presence of large numbers of Legionellae in water distribution systems and in industrial waters, including cooling tower environments, presents a potentially serious health risk to both workers and the general public. It is well known that Legionella species are frequently isolated from South African industrial water distribution systems and the prevalence of antibodies in the general public is high (Bartie, 1994). No official guidelines exist in South Africa for the maintenance of water distribution systems and for treatment of such systems contaminated with Legionella. Treatment procedures currently available are expensive and only successful in the temporary reduction of bacterial numbers. Although certain biocides have been proven to be effective against Legionella in laboratory conditions, their efficacy under field conditions has not been studied in detail. The exact role of protozoa, especially in biofilm conditions, in the protection of these organisms against biocide treatment is not clear and needs to be studied.
Although standard methods for detection and identification of Legionella have been formulated in the USA, Britain and Australia, such standards have not been set for South Africa. As a result, local laboratories have been testing water samples for the presence of legionellae, using a variety of methods that have not been standardized. A recent interlaboratory study conducted by a number of laboratories in South Africa and one in Britain, has confirmed this lack of standardization among laboratories and identification methods used (Truscott, 1998). A general lack of quality control in the preparation of culture media was also observed. This has in turn resulted in contradictory results regarding water quality in industrial systems and a lack of confidence in local water testing, specifically for Legionella. The organism apparently prefers biofilm conditions which further complicates current methods of detection and identification, as a number of these methods do not make provision for analysis of such samples.
All the methods currently used in South Africa for the detection and quantification of Legionella are conventional methods, dependent on the culturing of legionellae prior to identification. These methods are reported to be time consuming and to require special identification reagents and culture media as well as a high degree of technical skill in their application. As mentioned, a distinct disadvantage of all these methods is the fact that only information on the culturable fraction of the organisms present in the sample will be possible. Advances in molecular biotechnology and development of diagnostic applications of the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in particular, have recently enabled rapid and reliable assays with many advantages over conventional culturing methods, including their lack of dependence over the cultureability of the target organisms.
The presence of Legionella spp. in cooling water systems has raised a number of questions concerning their growth and survival. If legionellae can be prevented from multiplying in cooling water systems, the probability of having an infective dose is greatly reduced. Information on the factors controlling the multiplication of Legionella in cooling water systems can facilitate efforts to control and minimize the risk of infection. Considering the above background outline, the following research objectives have been formulated.
ii. Research objectives
1. Isolation of Legionella species present in South African industrial cooling water systems.
2. Evaluation of currently available identification and enumeration methods using type cultures (ATCC) and isolated Legionella species.
3. Use and evaluation of standard PCR methods and commercial kits for the identification and enumeration of Legionella.
4. Comparison of all methods in terms of cost, applicability to field conditions, sensitivity, specificity and availability.
5. Correlation of Legionella species and free-living protozoa (identified to species level) commonly found in industrial cooling water systems.
6. Determination of the ecology of Legionella in the biofilm and water phase of cooling towers.
7. Recommendation of guidelines for a standard method for detection of Legionella in industrial water systems.
I have worked in a medical laboratory for many years. Apart from scientific articles, I also have been reading news, magazines, novels, poems, and many other reading materials in English (and Thai, of course) since I was an undergrad. So, I'm quite familiar with the cultural differences and differences in English/Thai language structures.
Although, I signed up to Proz.com in 2010, I haven't been active here until now (Nov 4, 2011)
And..this is actually my first time trying to get translation jobs online, as I've only been working on some translation jobs received from friends of a friend, and some acquaintances in the past few years. But most works were quite confidential and I cannot show them here.
Anyway, now I've gained more confidence that I really can commit to this kind of job. Or at least, I can definitely tell, after seeing, which job I can, or cannot do.
Currently, I'm offering a free of charge (up to 500-words) English to Thai translation service in exchange for being one of my customer referrees. Please feel free to contact me if you are interested.
I just hope to get a chance to serve my best service to my customers here.
Ps. Please check my sample translation to see if my quality meets your requirement.
Keywords: English to Thai, Sci/Tech, social-media, education, journalism