scientific presentation

Zodiac Checklist: Aquarius
  • ☑: Your used to having a 'noisy head'; and can easily get lost in the company of your own thoughts
  • ☑: You have a tremendous imagination but still find yourself applying scientific evidence to everything presented to you
  • ☑: You love humanity but loathe people
  • ☑: It is hard to arouse emotions within yourself; your in relationships, although they just feel as though they are 'closer friends
  • ☑: You will argue something until you have proved your point, and proved to others why they should also value this ideal
  • ☑: You feel at one with the crowd and your friends, then the familiar wave overcomes you and you need to be alone, away
  • ☑: You are more responsible than you seem, you feel intense duty for secret, higher purposes

anonymous asked:

Different anon than the one who asked about Iruka and Urahara, but your response got me thinking of just who else in Naruto-verse, besides Oro, has pulled enough shit to deserve the creepy courting rituals of one Mister Hat-and-Clogs, and my evil, broken brain spat (T)Obito at me, so now I'm sharing the pain. Just imagine them though: two overly-strategic, manipulative bastards with a penchant for trolling everybody by masquerading as happy ditzes. (1/4?!)

The cat-and-mouse game between them would be epic and utterly obnoxious to everyone forced to witness it, but Obito without a mask must have a critically weak pokerface and it’d probably take Kisuke no time to tease out that all he needs to break it with a blush is lay the innuendo on thick. That pale Uchiha skin. The rest of the challenge for Urahara is entirely based on managing to contrive excuses to get in Obito’s personal space without him using Kamui to slip away, because I’m of the opinion that every Obi-pairing ever, in any universe, should include touch-starved!Obito eventually getting scooped up and overwhelmed with cuddles. For a side of angst, they’d have to work through Kisuke’s tenuous grasp of scientific ethics when presented with someone with such a fascinating hodgepodge of ridiculous powers, colliding with Obito’s probable PTSD and body-horror from cave time with Madara and Zetsu. :( 

 But since my real OTP is Obito/ANYbody-big-enough-to-cuddle-him, in any universe, eventually Kisuke’s gotta sneak some snuggles. Maybe right after Obito genjutsus the fuck out of Aizen for being another wannabe-god, and it’s the sexiest thing Urahara’s ever seen. Just. If any Naruto character is enough of a karmic mixed-bag  to deserve being affably harrassed and poked at and force-fed sweets by goddamn Urahara Kisuke, isn’t it Obito?

For the record, I hate you muchly and this is now a thing I ship. Whyyyyy. 

Gin knows he’s going to die.

It’s not as if this was ever in question; betraying Aizen isn’t something survivable, and Gin’s been aware of that from the very first. That doesn’t mean he’s going to stop, though.

Rangiku is worth more than that, and so is getting revenge for what was taken from her.

The Hōgyoku pulses in his grip like a heart torn free, and Gin doesn’t think he’s ever hated anything except Aizen himself more.

In the rubble left behind by Kamishini no Yari, something stirs. Gin glances up, muscles winding tight, because of course it wasn’t going to be as easy as snatching the damned thing from Aizen’s chest and beating a retreat; he’s bought himself some breathing room, a calm like the moment before a hurricane hits, and—

The Hōgyoku trembles like it’s going to wink out, and in the same instant a scarred hand closes over Gin’s, all five fingertips glowing incandescent violet.

Gin jerks, startled into flight, but another hand grabs his wrist as his head snaps up. Not Aizen, because he would be dead if it was, but a complete stranger, scarred and grim with eyes like red-and-black pinwheels.

“Seal,” the stranger commands, not so much as looking at Gin, and Gin yelps as a burning heat races across the skin of his abdomen. The Hōgyoku shivers like struck crystal, then winks out of existence, and simultaneously Gin feels it. There’s a rush of heat through his whole body, a tingling awareness that it’s there just beneath the surface, and he collapses to his knees with a gasp.

In the same moment, there’s a scream of pure fury from Aizen, out of sight beyond the rubble, and Gin realizes that the overwhelming pressure of the Hōgyoku on the town around them is entirely gone.

“Sorry,” the stranger says, releasing Gin’s wrist, though he doesn’t sound all that apologetic. “That was the thing all of this is about, right? The perverted bastard’s pet project?”

Well. Gin’s more used to hearing that phrase used to describe him, but in this context he’s going to assume the man means Urahara. “What did ya do?”

“Sealed it,” he says precisely, as if this answers everything. “If the Kyuubi no Kitsune can’t break an Eight Trigrams Seal, neither can that thing. I’m sorry it had to be you I sealed it into, but I was kind of short on options.”

On the list of things Gin truly Does Not Want, having the Hōgyoku sealed inside of him probably ranks up there with kissing Aizen full on the mouth. Still, it’s definitely better than the alternative, and he gets his feet under him with an effort and pushes upright. His shihakusho is already tattered, and he tugs it aside to find dark, heavy lines written across his stomach, a spiral of black ink surrounded by neat characters.

“I don’ think I want ta be a butterfly,” Gin says, a little faintly.

The stranger blinks, clearly startled, and then snorts. “You’re not going to transform. It’s sealed. You can’t use its power, and neither can anyone else.” Apparently dismissing the matter, he turns away, just as a familiar figure staggers around a broken street corner with seething fury in his face.

“You,” Aizen spits, bringing Kyōka Suigetsu up like a threat. “What have you done?”

Despite himself, Gin almost takes a step back. He’s never seen Aizen truly angry, even at the moment of his betrayal, never seen raw shock on his face like this before. It’s…terrifying.

But the stranger just snorts, facing him squarely. His eyes flicker past Aizen’s figure, to where Urahara Kisuke is just stepping down onto the street with narrowed eyes and an unreadable expression, and he smiles.

It’s not a nice expression.

“You’re not the first would-be god I’ve dealt with,” he says flatly. “And compared to the actual god I’ve faced, you don’t even begin to match up.” A step, and the air warps around him like a vortex. He vanishes, winking out of existence, and Gin shifts forward before he can help himself, not entirely sure what he means to do beyond help, and—

Aizen spins, sword slashing through the air, but it passes right through the stranger ass he reappears. Then he’s abruptly solid again, just in time to whirl and kick Aizen in the gut.

A flicker of flash-step and Urahara appears next to Gin, one hand holding his hat in place and a small, quirked smile on his lips. “My, my,” he says, and the tone is light but his eyes are sharp. “It seems our visitor from another dimension has lots of tricks up his sleeve.”

Gin glances at the stranger just in time to see him slam a hand against Aizen’s chest, fingertips glowing again, and Aizen cries out as every last trace of his reiatsu vanishes from the air. “You were keepin’ the kid in reserve?” he asks, because this is definitely not something Aizen knew Urahara had.

It’s hard to tell whether he’s getting more satisfaction from that thought or from watching Aizen get his ass kicked by a man who doesn’t even seem to be trying.

Well. Both, probably. Scratch that, both definitely.

Urahara chuckles, tipping his hat down over his eyes a little more, though his gaze doesn’t leave the rather one-sided fight. Gin had known that Aizen had never excelled at hand-to-hand the way he did at kido, because he’s spent decades learning the bastard’s weaknesses, but even knowing that it’s easy to see the stranger is good, on top of his ability to turn intangible. “No, no. Our cute little visitor didn’t even know about Aizen until a few minutes ago. He must have felt the two of you appearing in the real Karakura and come to find me. Such an adorable tsundere, don’t you think?”

Gin watches the adorable tsundere deliver an uppercut to Aizen’s jaw that audible cracks bone, and refrains from commenting.

There’s no need, anyway; without the Hōgyoku, without his reiatsu, the blow knocks Aizen back on his heels, and a final roundhouse kick catches him in the side of the head. He crumples like a puppet without strings, collapsing into a heap on the ground, and the stranger pulls back, breath still even as if he hadn’t just gone up against a man who practically laid the Gotei 13 to waste.

“Oi, pervert,” he calls, without looking away from Aizen. “You want him gift-wrapped or something?”

Urahara laughs merrily, flash-stepping to the strangers side. “My, my, Obito, you’re certainly thorough.”

Obito turns a dark look on him, though it holds more aggravation than true anger. “I just watched him kick your ass. And Yoruichi’s. Was I supposed to go easy on him?”

“Revenge? For our sakes?” Urahara asks cheerfully, and before Obito can dodge he catches him around the waist and pulls him into what’s either a hug or an octopus’s stranglehold—Gin can’t quite tell. “How sweet of you!”

With a squawk, Obito tries to pry him off, but doesn’t get far. “Let go, you damned creep! Hey! Where do you think you’re putting your hands—hey!”

“Ouch,” Urahara says in mild protest, though his wince isn’t entirely faked. “I’ve already been abused once today, you know.”

Tellingly, Obito stops struggling instantly, practically sinking back into Urahara’s hold. “Idiot,” he says, and there’s more relief than anything in his tone. “You know I would have helped if you had just asked.”

“How was I supposed to know out new freeloader had experience taking out gods?” Urahara protests with something that’s probably supposed to be a pout. “How rude, keeping these things from your lover, Obito.”

“Who’s my lover?” Obito retorts without hesitation. “Stop saying when it’s not even true!”

“But it could be—ow.”

“I changed my mind. Go die,” Obito snarls, shoving Urahara back by the face. “Let me go, you can deal with the butterfly bastard—”


Gin turns quickly, catching a flash of color out of the corner of his eye, and just has time to open his arms before Rangiku plows into him. He huffs, staggering back a step, and feels her hug him impossibly tight for three full seconds. Then she pulls back, expression shading towards fury, and slaps him full across the face.

“You bastard, you knocked me out,” she hisses, though her eyes are distressingly damp. “You can’t just apologize and then disappear, I thought you were going to die!”

“Ah, Ran-chan—”

You were?!”

Rangiku has always been able to read him far too well.

Somehow it’s that thought above all others that makes Gin suddenly realize that—they’re done. Aizen has been beaten, and while Gin won’t relax until the bastard is nothing but ashes, he’s certain Central 46 will take care of that soon enough. The man looks small and pathetic inn defeat, and Gin can’t help but laugh, slumping forward as every muscle goes weak with relief.

Rangiku catches him.

Of course she does.

“It’s over,” he tells her, just in case she missed it.

There’s a long pause, and then a careful kissed pressed to his hair. “It is,” Rangiku agrees. Amusement shades into her tone as she asks, “Their doing?”

Gin doesn’t look to where Urahara and Obito are still bickering, just hums quietly in agreement.

Then, without any warning, a truly massive beacon of reiatsu practically explodes into existence. Gin wrenches around on instinct, shoving Rangiku behind him as he grabs for his zanpakuto, and a figure in black with daylily hair seems to spontaneously appear before them.

There’s a long moment of silence as Kurosaki Ichigo blinks at Gin and Rangiku, at Obito still shoving at Urahara as the exile clings to him, at Aizen unconscious in the dirt. Then, in a tone of utter bewilderment, he says, “What?”

A laugh cracks out of somewhere deep in Gin’s chest. He staggers with the force of his mirth, hanging onto Rangiku to stay upright, and doesn’t stop laughing for a very long time.

It feels better than anything has in almost a hundred years.

Stress-induced changes in maternal gut could negatively impact offspring for life

Prenatal exposure to a mother’s stress contributes to anxiety and cognitive problems that persist into adulthood, a phenomenon that could be explained by lasting – and potentially damaging – changes in the microbiome, according to new research in mice.

When pregnant mice were exposed to stress in the study, it appeared to change the makeup of the bacteria in both their guts and placentas, as well as in the intestinal tracts of their female offspring, researchers at The Ohio State University found. And those microbial changes lasted into adulthood.

On top of that, the mice with stressed mothers struggled in tests aimed at gauging anxiety and cognitive health compared with female offspring of mice that were not stressed during pregnancy. And markers of inflammation increased in the placenta, the fetal brain and the adult brain of the offspring while a supportive protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) decreased.

“More and more, doctors and researchers are understanding that naturally occurring bacteria are not just a silent presence in our body, but that they contribute to our health,” said Tamar Gur, the lead researcher and assistant professor of psychiatry & behavioral health, neuroscience and obstetrics & gynecology at Ohio State.

“These mice were more anxious, they spent more time in dark, closed spaces and they had a harder time learning cognitive tasks even though they were never stressed after birth.” Gur presented the study on Nov. 14 in San Diego at Neuroscience 2016, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.

Previous studies have found associations between maternal stress in both animals and people to later mental health and behavioral problems in their offspring. This study could begin to explain what’s at play in that relationship.

“We already understand that prenatal stress can be bad for offspring, but the mystery is how,” said Gur, a psychiatrist who is a member of Ohio State Wexner Medical Center’s Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research.

Gur said microbes from a mother’s gastrointestinal and reproductive tracts are the first to colonize in a developing fetus (and in newborns). That makes the bacteria an interesting potential explanation of why and how stress before an animal or person is born could prompt mental illness that can last a lifetime.

This study is pointing to alterations in the microbes that live in the placenta and outlines changes found in the placentas of fetal mice that had stressed mothers.

Gur and her colleagues found significant microbial changes to the placentas of the female offspring of stressed mice. They also found alterations in inflammation and growth factors in the placenta, pointing to changes in how the microbes were influencing important dynamics before birth.

And in the female offspring of the stressed mice, the researchers found a lower ability to learn and higher anxiety-like behavior compared to the offspring of non-stressed mother mice. Gur said the team found interesting changes in the male offspring as well, but the details of that part of the study are still in the works.

Gur said she wants to know more about the links between the brain and the bacteria that live in the gut, and she and her colleagues have plans to expand their investigation to pregnant women and their babies. Perhaps one day the work will lead to knowledge about how probiotics could help mitigate the effects of stress and the downstream repercussions, but it’s too soon now to say if they would have any impact, she said.

The stressed mother mice underwent two hours per day for seven days of restraint meant to induce stress. For comparison, the researchers left another group of pregnant mice undisturbed during gestation. Gut bacteria were assessed using fecal samples from the mice.

Gur stressed that the message here is not that mothers are to blame should their children suffer mental illness later in life. Rather, she said, this scientific development presents an opportunity to talk more about the importance of mental health in general and during pregnancy.

“As a psychiatrist who treats pregnant women, if you’re stressed, anxious or depressed, I think pregnancy is a prime time for intervention,” Gur said. “And what’s good for mom is good for the baby.”

The Mind Cage - Epilogue

Title: The Mind Cage
Summary: In another world, Stanford Pines places a metal plate in his skull far too soon. In another world, Bill Cipher is in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Characters: Bill Cipher, Ford Pines, Stan Pines, Fiddleford McGucket
Rating: T
Click here for the first chapter, warnings and links to all chapters up so far.

A/N:  And here’s the epilogue - if you read the Journal, you’ll definitely know which scenario it’s based on!
(If you haven’t: it’s from a parallel reality where Stan left with Jornal 1 when told to, Ford reconnected with McGucket and together they made interdimensional travel possible without allowing Bill access to their world. Happy ending for everyone… except Stan, clearly. So I had to fix that.)


The Astonishing Anomalies of Gravity Falls

Fiddleford H. McGucket, PhD
Stanford F. Pines, PhD

– To Stanley Pines, without whom none of this would have seen the light of day.


Nikola Tesla once said that the history of science shows that theories are perishable; with every new truth that is revealed, we get a better understanding of Nature and our conceptions and views are modified.

Much of what is written in this paper defies what most believe to be real; research on the cause of these phenomena is still ongoing. Only by keeping an open mind on the scientific evidence presented in this work, and abandoning all preconceptions…


Stan had seen it coming from a mile away.

Keep reading

“… present day scientific analyses of capital proclaim a complete disregard for human beings who, for some, are nothing but a residue without consistency. this means that the discourse of science is the discourse of capital, or that science is possible only after the destruction of human beings; it is a discourse on the pathology of the human being. thus it is insane to ground the hope of liberation on science…”

- jacques camatte, the wandering of humanity

My interest in the ethical issues surrounding the use of non-human animals grew out of my investigations into the phenomenon of dehumanization- the tendency to conceive of groups of people as creatures that are less than human. Dehumanization is a common feature of war, genocide, slavery, and other atrocities (Smith, 2011). Its purpose is to disinhibit violence against the dehumanized group by excluding them from the universe of moral obligation.
Dehumanization raises deep metaphysical and ethical questions about the human/non-human binary…
…Speciesism is parasitic on the category of “species”. It refers to the moral privileging of certain biological kinds… [I]t is generally supposed that “human” straightforwardly refers to the species Homo sapiens, and therefore that “human” is a name for a biological kind. If this assumption is correct then it provides a clear basis for demarcating humans from non-humans. Only Homo sapiens are human, and all other species are non-human. But what if this isn’t correct? If “human” and “Homo sapiens” are not equivalent terms, then this upsets certain suppositions about the human/non-human dichotomy as well as the moral implications that supposedly flow from them.
What is it to be human? …[T]he dictionary gives us three options (Homo sapiens, some proper subset of genus Homo that includes Homo sapiens among its members, or all of genus Homo); the scientific literature presents us with even more. Although for the most part paleoanthropologists identify humans with Homo sapiens, or with the genus Homo, some restrict it to the subspecies Homo sapiens or enlarge it to include all of the hominin lineage (for a range of views, see e.g. Leakey and Lewin, 1993; Falgueres et al., 1999l Potts, 2003; Schmitt, 2003; Lewin and Foley, 2004; Mikkelsen, 2004; Pollard, 2009).
These differences of opinion are not due to the scarcity or ambiguity of empirical evidence. They are due to the complete absence of such evidence- or, to put the point with greater precision, the absence of any conception of what sort of evidence would settle the question of which primate taxa or taxon should be counted as “human”. Biological science can specify, with a reasonable degree of accuracy, the taxon to which an organism belongs, but it cannot tell us whether an organism is a human organism. The epistemic authority of science does not extend to judgements about what creatures are human because “human” is a folk category, not a scientific one.
…Claims like “an animal is human only if they are a member of the species Homo sapiens” are stipulated rather than discovered. Neither you nor anyone else has sifted through the available data (what data?) to emerge with the finding that humans are Homo sapiens. Rather, in deciding that all and only Homo sapiens are humans, you are expressing a preference about where the boundary separating humans from non-humans should be drawn (Clark and Willermet, 1997; Corbey, 2005; Bourke, 2011).

The Politics of Species (2013) -Chapter 3 (Idexically Yours: Why being human is more like being here than like being water)- David Livingstone Smith on the politics of human identity and “human” as a social construct and folk category versus a biological fact. // Part I.

“We exclude other animals from the moral community by conceiving of them as essentially different from ourselves.”

have some haikyuu 3rd year captains in a same high school au:

  • okay, so as a disclaimer i will have them not play volleyball in this, okay? an abomination, i know so yeah… here we go
  • so say that they’re in an exclusive boys school and they all belong in the same class, so they’re classmates, but their group was formed because they kind of know a person or another, outside of the school
  • like bokuto and kuroo are childhood friends, who are neighbors with daishou, who happened to go to the same middle school as okudake, who is neighbors with oikawa who went to summer camps with ushijima, when they were children, an event annually sponsored by nakashima’s family, who are like business partners of sawamura’s family, who also delivers ingredients to moniwa’s family restaurant, who is next door neighbors to akimiya’s family flower shop. yeah.
  • in their group there are different designations, so to speak, like, you have the team dad made up by sawamura and okudake, with ushijima as an honorary member
  • of course you’ll have the team mom, which are composed of moniwa, akimiya and nakashima is an honorary member
  • (honorary because it’s only in the absence of the first two would they take up the mantle)
  • (but ushijima mostly likes to keep to himself, and nakashima is sort of a floater that is happy to join whichever cause he feels like it)
  • then they have the wayward children in the form of the Formidable Four: bokuto, kuroo, oikawa, and daishou
  • of course, the main troublemakers are kuroo and bokuto, who are always ‘responsible’ for the different shenanigans the group members get into
  • you also have the team Salt&Sass ™ which, you guessed it, formed by oikawa and daishou, and its a miracle that they dont drag each other or are not actual enemies, but their cat fights could get nasty, and no one really wants to deal with that except maybe kuroo 
  • (only for a chance to drag the both of them because hey, killing two birds with one stone, the cat gets the canary)
  • so like he’s an honorary member or something. yeah
  • it’s universally accepted that moniwa, akimiya, and bokuto must be protected at all costs. PROTECT AKIMIYA AND HIS AHOGE AT ALL COSTS.
  • so because of that, kuroo is actually one with sawamura and okudake, and they just want to rest.
  • but hey, big groups of friends are fun, but the most unlikely friendships formed were between ushijima and moniwa (a certain 7 minutes in heaven game instigated by the Formidable Four may have been the culprit)
  • daishou has all but adopted akimiya, and he will fight, and drag to hell and back those who would lay even a nasty pinky finger on him
  • oikawa baptized okudake as ‘the ushijima that i can more or less stand’
  • and bokuto is just so happy to have nakashima understand, and out of all of them, he’s pretty much the only one who can match his energetic nature
  • (kuroo is good for ideas, but he’s physically weak af and he would rather hangout in the lab than outside)
  • and since they don’t necessarily play volleyball in this, have some sport swap/respective electives/clubs AU: 
  • daichi - archery; okudake - baseball; nakashima - track and field; ushijima - kendo; bokuto - karate
  • kuroo (the nerd) - advance classes in chemistry; daishou - writer for the school paper; moniwa - wind music; akimiya - painting; oikawa - theater
  • and yeah, they are each other’s cheerleaders, like they make it a point to watch the games as much as they can, and support scientific presentations, recitals, and exhibits, and shows, and trust that they more or less have a section dedicated to them in the school newspaper.
  • overall its a riot, but its family and its fun and as much as they want to throw each other outside of a moving car on occasion, they would make sure to cushion the fall
  • (not that they would admit it out loud even when tortured)

I picked off nearly all of my nail polish during the post presentation q&a when my professor said “you actually presented specifically on my area of expertise, let me ask you a follow up about this neurotransmitter,” but I think I handled myself well and a couple different people came up to say how smart I sounded so the first advanced scientific presentation of my life went pretty well

OK but the anti-vaxxer movement is deeply offensive on so many levels and not just because it adamantly refuses to accept reality, screams over anyone who presents scientific evidence as to why they are literally causing innocent children to needlessly die, and comes up with more absurd claims. Vaccines cause autism, now cancer? Get fucked you idiots. It’s offensive for more than the obvious core element that is willful neglect and child abuse. It’s offensive that they saw the idea of an autistic child as a nightmare scenario they’d rather risk harming their child than submit them to. What utter ableist fuckery. As a person who is on the autistic spectrum it’s this uncomfortably personal position where an entire movement of people are masquerading as “concerned parents” who want what’s best for their kids but what it really says is “we hate you, we don’t understand you, but we think being like you is disgusting and we will do anything we can to stop our child from being like you - including abusing them.” I will not be shamed by the anti-vaxxer movement into thinking of myself as someone who needs to be cured of some life-destroying impediment because I’m fucking not. Even if there was some magical fantasy alternative reality where vaccines sometimes caused autism then the idea that not giving a child a vaccine to prevent autism is still not being a concerned parent. It’s being an ableist asshole.

Fuck you. Fuck your denial of reality. Fuck you for causing premature deaths in children from preventable diseases. Fuck you for your willful neglect. Fuck you for spitting on the humanity of every person with autism out there and treating us like we’re diseased and unwanted.

Fuck. You.

So dcuniversewatchtower just asked me some questions about applying to grad school (school psychology or clinical psychology specifically) and I hope you don’t mind me making the answers public, because I feel these are questions every grad school hopeful asks and I would love to help out as many people as I can!

How do you think I should approach my professors when or comes to letter of recommendations? Is an email good or should I make an appointment with them? Any tips for applying to grad school? I’ve researched the schools I’m interested in and I meet the requirements except the GRE which I haven’t taken yet. My GPA isn’t excellent but it isn’t bad either.

Letters of Rec

  • Email is fine. Professors are oftentimes hard to catch during the day. But make sure the professor knows who you are! You may want to jog their memory by reminding them of any special projects you did for them, if you TA’d, or volunteered in their lab, etc. If all you did was sit in lecture and get good grades, the professor won’t know who you are. And you also want the professor to know you well so they can write a genuine letter. You can also let them know what qualities you would like them to highlight in your letter. For example, if you helped them design exam questions for a special projects, ask them to describe your critical thinking and attention to detail, and experience in teaching. The more you outline your letter of rec for them, the happier they’ll be. 
  • Attach to your email the following things: your resume/CV and your personal statement. The personal statement is important because they can tailor their letter to what your goals and aspirations are for grad school. 
  • Then let them know if they’re willing to write a letter of rec for you, instructions from each university’s application will come via email. Grad school applications aren’t like common app for undergrad; every school is a separate application. And on it will be instructions for you to fill out 3 or more names and contact info for letters of rec. The application will then email those professors, and in turn the professors will submit the letters electronically. It helps to give your professors a list of the schools you’re applying to, so they can check off letters they’ve submitted.
  • Send out your requests for letters at least 3 months before the applications close. This will give your professors plenty of time to write the letters. Professors are very busy people. If you approach them 1 week before the deadline, they’ll be very angry and most likely won’t write the letter. 
  • It’s okay to email your professors reminders as the application deadline nears and they still haven’t submitted the letters. You’ll be able to see on your application who’s submitted letters and who hasn’t. 2 weeks before the application closes, send a courtesy email to those professors who haven’t submitted theirs yet. Professors are just like us and will forget things all the time, so trust me that they appreciate your reminders. 
  • Be sure to thank them afterwards with a quick email or thank you card. And also let them know if you got admitted to any schools! Professors love to be proud of their previous students :)
  • More tips: make sure at least one (though all would be better) of the professors writing you letters of rec is in the field you’re applying to. They know what it takes to succeed in that specific program, so a recommendation from them shows the school you’re legit stuff. Also, those writing you a recommendation should have a graduate degree themselves. This also shows authenticity in their words. 

General application tips

I have a few on my grad school blog here, but I can jiggle a few more out of my brain!


  • Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis is the sole reason I did so well on the reading part of the GRE. It has fun worksheet-style activities that help you learn vocabulary a gazillion times better than any flashcards. I highly recommend it. 
  • When writing the essays, keep your words and sentences concise, and try to argue both points for the argumentative essay (have your main opinion but also be able to see it from the other point of view at the end, followed by a very strong rebuttal). And focus on facts; not emotion. Do not do what I did the first time and treat it like writing a novel and slapping all sorts of descriptive flowery junk to my sentences. 
  • That being said, try to pick up as much random factoids as you can. If you can slap in a date or name or a specific court case or historical event into one or both your essays, then man oh man will the graders love it. 

The personal statement (my experience is only in personal statements for science programs. so this may not apply to everyone)

  • Focus on your previous experience in the field to highlight why you’re a good fit for the program. This should be the main chunk of your essay. In undergrad we could get away talking about practically anything. Can’t do that anymore! The purpose of the grad school personal statement is to show the following: a) your commitment to the field, b) reasons why that particular school and program is a good fit for you, and c) what you can contribute to that particular school and program. Point A should be the most important, and talk about what you learned from that experience too, and how it expanded your knowledge and passion for the field. 
  • But of course also pay attention to the prompt. It may ask that you don’t talk about your specific past experience at all, and highlight other things. 
  • If you published any scientific papers, or presented any posters at conferences or showcases, be sure to include that!
  • Revise revise revise! Never send in your first draft as your final. Give it to others to proofread and give feedback. It helps the most if you give it to other grad students already in the program or similar as they know what works. 


Because every school’s application is separate and unique, the process can become pretty chaotic! Here’s how you can better keep track of everything. 

  • Make an Excel sheet with all the schools, and create separate columns for their deadlines and requirements that you can check off as they get done. This is an easy all-in-one place to check statuses of letters of recs and deadlines. Also helpful to put your usernames and passwords here too for logging into applications. 
  • Have a separate folder on your computer for each school, so when you go to submit documents online, you don’t accidentally send University A’s personal statement to University B. 
  • Some schools require hardcopies of transcripts to be mailed to them, while others are okay with electronic scans. Be sure to keep track of this. And keep in mind requesting official transcripts costs $$ and may take a few days. 
  • Back up all your personal statements/etc onto an external hard-drive, or electronic backing system such as Google Docs or Dropbox frequently. Nothing worse than losing all that 2 weeks before the deadline!

I think that’s all I can think of regarding application tips. As for your GPA, I wouldn’t worry too much as long as you meet the required overall GPA and science GPA (if the schools ask for it). Undergrad grades aren’t as important as previous experience for grad school. I got a C in 2nd semester OChem and I still got into grad school :) During interviews, no one asked me about my grades at all. They just wanted to know about my previous lab experience and why I wanted to go to that particular school. 

I think the most important thing about applying for grad school and even getting through grad school is to always have faith in yourself. Even if there are others who doubt your skill, you should always pay attention to your own voice first. After all, you’re doing this for you. This is your life. Not theirs. It will never be theirs. So this degree you’re seeking, this opportunity to further your education, to one day help others with your experience–this is all yours. And if you believe in yourself, and work hard to achieve it, then no one else can ever keep you from achieving your goals. 

I had an orchestra director in high school who told us something one day in class that’s always stuck with me. She said: “People were always telling me that as a black woman, I should be staying home and having kids, not going to college. Well you know what, I proved them all wrong. I got my Bachelors. I got my Masters. And then I got my PhD.” 

I wish you all the best, and if you have any further questions, or just need someone to listen to you or believe in you, you know where to find me :)

anonymous asked:

Could you summarise diamat pls?

yeah so diamat stands for dialectical materialism and im pretty bad at explaining this bc it took me a while to understand myself but ill try. so diamat is kinda like a combination of two things: hegels dialectics (which is often described as idealist) and materialism (which is more mechanistic). dialectics and materialism are very different kinda incompatible things, so diamat is the synthesis/struggle between them. im gonna quote something bc its better worded than i could ever word it but “the central theories of dialectical materialism are presented as scientific laws of a completely general kind governing nature, society, and thought” the materialism part of diamat basically asserts “matter can exist without mind but not vice verse and mind was historically emergent from matter and remains dependent on it” basically: things happen because of the material conditions people are in. the dialectics part of diamat says that the conflict of really opposite things is what drives history and the historical process

to be honest, a dictionary of marxist thought has a more in depth definition which is what i got the quotes from anyways so if u want a more detailed and probably better explanation scroll to page 156 in the pdf:


+ we light up the world.


As the Kratts observe, they discover that the Platypus, who Martin later names Plato but I’m not gonna wait, getting food… but her eyes, ears, and nose is closed up. Meaning that she is not using three of the senses, once of which is pretty vital when underwater. That’s odd. How can you find food underwater if you can’t see it? Or how when you can’t hear the movements of the prey or get it’s scent? Is it even possible to do anything underwater with only two senses? Well Chris is curious as to how the platypus is pulling it off… and unfortunately for Martin, he gets ideas.

Apparently Chris just had a nose-clip, ear muffs, and a blindfold on him. Don’t ask me how. But when you have a scenario presented, scientifically you have to test it. So Chris blocks Martin’s sense of sight, hearing, and smell to see if he can act as a Platypus does. Whether he can or can’t, it’ll help them figure out how the Platyus maneuvers underwater. Martin is less then thrilled, not seeming to have a good history when it comes to Chris’ experiments. But Chris convinces him to do it, for SCIENCE! Best reason! Even when Martin agrees, you an hear in his voice how much he’s going to hate himself for it later.

anonymous asked:

Hi Helen! I've been in touch with Miranda. She suggested that I contact you directly in order to pick up on your statement that "'Trans women are women' is a vicious and dangerous lie." Two questions (for starters) are "how do you define a woman" and "how do you define a transwomen". I do empathise with much of what you wrote, but I get bogged down with terminology that gets conflated and means different things to different people.

Thanks for asking this. I think that they are really important questions. On the surface they seem quite simple questions but once you start to look at the implications we can start to understand what the real issues might be.

Your first question is about the definition of woman. A good place to start with definitions is usually the dictionary.

An adult human female.

I don’t think that the definitions of human or adult are in contention, but let’s look at the dictionary definition of female.

Of or denoting the sex that can bear offspring or produce eggs, distinguished biologically by the production of gametes (ova) which can be fertilized by male gametes.”

We could just leave it there, and some people would like us to, but I think that doesn’t answer your question and wouldn’t help us to understand why these are contentious words.

The words man and woman are imbued with social connotation.

inspire or permeate with (a feeling or quality).

an idea or feeling which a word invokes for a person in addition to its literal or primary meaning.

In our society the words ‘man’ and ‘woman’ mean so much more than their literal meanings. The word ‘woman’ is imbued with what we understand women to be in relation to our culture and our social environment.

We live in a society where we have very distinct expectations of what men and women are expected to be. We have commonly accepted rules for what are considered acceptable and unacceptable behaviours for men and women.

So what is gender? Well here is where it starts to get tricky because even just looking at dictionary definitions we seem to get into a bit of a mess.


  1. The members of one or other sex
  2. The state of being male or female (typically used with reference to social and cultural differences rather than biological ones).
  3. The behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex

The first definition isn’t really very helpful as it is just the same as sex.

The second definition is a bit of a mess and actually encapsulates the confusion that we often get into. If ‘female’ denotes the sex that can bear offspring or produce eggs how can the state of being female have anything to do with social differences rather than biological differences? It’s a contradiction in terms.

The third definition I think pretty much nails it and that is what I mean if I refer to gender from now on.

Ok. Still with me? Good. So armed with this we know that the dictionary definition of ‘woman’ is an adult human female, but it has connotations of gender i.e. it invokes the idea of the behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with females.

In this sense it is quite easy to define gender identity and transgender (and apologies in advance for the repetition that is coming)

Gender Identity is how a person identifies with the behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex.”

Transgender is used to describe a person of one sex who identifies with the behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with the opposite sex.”

“A transwoman is a male who identifies with the behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with females.”

That last sentence is probably quite provocative, but it isn’t meant to be. I understand that saying that a transwoman is male hurts a lot of trans people and I understand why. But it isn’t meant to hurt. It’s a rational and honest way of describing the situation. Of course there is merit in deconstructing this further and stopping to explore why it hurts so much, but that would be a whole post in itself. We could also explore the fact that the experiences of some transwomen feel like so much more than identifying with certain traits and it’s a feeling that the whole body is wrong and that this totally ignores the feeling of body dysphoria. These are valid points for discussion also.

Now if everybody agreed on these definitions of gender identity and transwoman we could stop here, but actually these definitions are problematic to different groups in different ways.

The trans community has adopted the mantra that “transwomen are women” and of course promotes any scientific evidence that suggests that there are physiological factors in play and rejects any scientific evidence that there aren’t any inherent differences between male and female brains. “Transwomen are women” makes sense in the context that we live in a society which is heavily based on gender and so we are more closely aligned with the superficial traits associated with females than those associated with males and seek to integrate with that social group. The argument is that trans people just want to be free to get on with their lives without rejection or stigma and so the tolerant and compassionate thing to do is to accept us as women. It is how we identify and how we attempt to live.

However, the feminist community rightly points out that women have been oppressed for millennia not because of their ‘gender identity’, but because of their sexual and reproductive capacity as females. Feminists, especially radical feminists are also opposed to the concept of “lady brain” as this has been used as a justification for the oppression of females and instead assert that male and female brain function is inherently the same, and that any differences are a result of socialisation. This community tends to reject that the scientific evidence presented of measurable differences between female and male brain function is evidence that the differences are  innate rather than socialised. Instead they point to the growing evidence that there are no real differences.

An important point is also that radical feminists see gender (as described in the third definition above) as being a tool of oppression. The traits and behaviours expected of males and females places women (as a class) in a position of being subjugated by men (as a class). As a result many adopt a position of gender abolition and believe that the emancipation of women can only be achieved through abolishing the rules that constrain the acceptable behaviours of males and females.

So we can see how these two viewpoints conflict.

Gender abolitionists want to break the association between sex and behavioural, cultural, or psychological traits and so find the implication that women are defined by these things as both insulting and regressive. Hence they reject the assertion that males who identify with these traits are women as that reinforces the association that they reject.

Having spent years thinking about these things and exploring them, I believe that the aims of gender abolition actually serve women and transwomen equally. Both sides want the same thing. That we can all be free to not conform to the behaviours and traits assigned to us because of our genitals.

As a result, whilst I can see how “transwomen are women” makes sense with reference to cultural norms, I support gender abolition as a cause that better serves women and transwomen and so I don’t believe it’s necessary to consider transwomen to be a subset of women in order to support us and free us from constraints and stigma.


Plucking Stars

The pragmatic romantic strikes back as Wang So stages a PRIVATE birthday celebration for Hae Soo - STARGAZING - because no gift on the whole Earth is good enough for her, ONLY THE STARS WOULD DO FOR HER. And the only reason why HE DOESN’T PLUCK THEM AND GIVE THEM TO HER IS BECAUSE THEY ARE TOO FAR AWAY.

“I’m telling you, that’s called a fixed star. Oh, that’s an anchor star… Have you forgotten how much I know about astronomy?”

Says the man who actually MOVED INTO A FREAKING ASTRONOMICAL TOWER BECAUSE HE WANTED TO SEE THE STARS THAT REMINDED HIM OF HER! There is no point trying to hide it now, So-ya, everybody already knows how hopelessly in love with her you are! And now it turns out, HE EVEN STUDIED THOSE STARS AS WELL, becoming an expert, and now he is showing off in front of her, trying to to woo her with his knowledge! 

Their clash about stars is interesting from many reasons - once again, the star-crossed lovers are discussing the stars, but futhermore there are their different views and knowledge of the subject. So, the pragmatic romantic, is presenting the scientific approach (or at least how astronomers were able to describe the stars at that time - the reason why he says C. is an anchor is because the constellation creates a “W” shape on the summer night sky which reminded people of an anchor), while HS counters with the romanticized mythology. The awesome thing is that So isn’t laughing at her story and is actually listening to her curiously and taking everything she says at a face value; as if it all was an absolute truth. It’s obvious he is noting it all down, forever engraving it in his memory. His reaction is very similar to the times she showed her talked about Bulgarian rose oil, drew the emoji, shared her views on motherhood and freedom. It might be a hint, that just like in the novel/cdrama, that one day HS would tell So she is from the future and he will believe her.

We’re learning about sexual dimorphisms in my biopsych class and the professor brought up that male velvet monkeys tend to choose “masculine” toys like trucks etc. while female velvet monkeys tend to choose “feminine” toys like dolls etc.

He then moved on to explain the difference between young boys’ and young girls’ drawings and interests, and how regardless of if girls and boys are given the same range of toys, males are drawn to masculine toys while girls are drawn to feminine toys. He talked about how young girls tend to draw humans and symmetrical things, with warmer colors, while boys usually draw vehicles, weapons, explosions, etc. and use cooler colors.

I held my breath for approximately five seconds, just waiting. I knew it was coming.

The bitch didn’t even raise her hand. She just blurted out, interrupting him, that this data doesn’t account for gender roles. He tried to rebut, but at least four other girls jumped in to bitch about how young girls are dressed in pink and taught from birth to be feminine. He was forced to retreat and tell them that environment has a role, but it isn’t the sole influence, and that he needed to move on with the lecture.

>presented with scientific evidence that males and females are wired differently

>ignores the data

>“but gender roles!”


Zodiac Checklist: Aquarius
  • ☑: Your used to having a 'noisy head'; and can easily get lost in the company of your own thoughts
  • ☑: You have a tremendous imagination but still find yourself applying scientific evidence to everything presented to you
  • ☑: You love humanity but loathe people
  • ☑: It is hard to arouse emotions within yourself; your in relationships, although they just feel as though they are 'closer friends
  • ☑: You will argue something until you have proved your point, and proved to others why they should also value this ideal
  • ☑: You feel at one with the crowd and your friends, then the familiar wave overcomes you and you need to be alone, away
  • ☑: You are sensitive to temperate changes/weather variables