I use Nobelprize.org in my classes to give students perspective on the fundamental discoveries underlying their areas of study. The Nobel citations and lectures contain fascinating background material that is – most attractive to students – FREE! The resources there provide a unique window to the state of the science leading up to the discoveries and, depending on the laureate, an interesting human side to the work.
For example, we used the example in my virology class yesterday of Harald zur Hausen (2008, Medicine or Physiology) and his work on HPV genomic integration in HeLa cells to talk about viral transformation, E6 inactivation of p53, E7 inactivation of Rb, and a general discussion of the Henrietta Lacks story.
The site recently added a sidebar widget for the top 5 searches and I thought it telling as to who makes the list today:
- Albert Einstein – 1921, Physics
- Marie Curie -1911, Chemistry
- Martin Luther King – 1964, Peace
- Barack Obama, 2009, Peace
- Nelson Mandela – 1993, Peace
I’m of two minds: part of me is encouraged but the other part of me is disappointed.
How about you?