Plant Science Bulletin archive

Issue: 1957 v3 No 2 SummerActions


A Publication of the Botanical Society of America, Inc.

VOLUME 3, NUMBER 2, April, 1957

HARRY J. FULLER, Editor 203 Nat. Hist. Bldg., University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois
George S. Avery. Jr. - Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Harlan P. Banks - Cornell University
Harriet Creighton - Wellesley College
Sydney S. Greenfield - Rutgers University
Paul B. Sears - Yale University

16 mm. Instructional Films for College Botany (1956)

16 mm. Instructional Films for College Botany (1956)
Prepared by Committee on Education
Marie Clark Taylor, Howard University


Title Producer1 Date Timing2 Sound3 Color4 Description
LIFE CYCLES            
The Onion IFB 1950 11 Sd Bw  
Living plants Fltwd 1955 10 Sd Bw Shows time-lapse
Life of a plant (pea) EBF 1950 11 Sd Col  
Dodder EBF 1931 11 Sd Bw Life cycle and destructive effects
Poison ivy Picnic NFBCa 1954 2 Sd Col, Bw Cycle, effects, treatment
Tree Portraits Harlow 1955 22 Sd Col Identification of 30 species of trees, seasonally, byleaf. flower, fruit, twig. bud. bark
Time Lapse Studies of growing trees NYSt 1953 12 Sd Col Unfolding of buds, development fruits, dispersal of seeds
Birth of a Southern Pine SoPu 1949 15 Sd Col Flowers, cones. seeds, young pls.
Glory of Spring IFB 1950 11 Sd Col Opening of buds of trees and shrubs
Miracle of the Trees IFB 1950 11 Sd Col Opening of buds of trees and shrubs
Seasonal Change in Trees Cor 1949 10 Sd Bw Seasonal aspect and classification
The fern Dartm   2 rls si Bw
Ferns AlmF 1951 10 Sd Bw Includes evolution of ferns
Life story of a Fern UW-ED 1949 10 Sd Bw  
Miracle of the Moss AlmF 1952 10 Sd Bw Includes physiology
Gathering Moss Ideal   11 Sd Bw  
Budding of Yeast Cells Std   15 Si Bw Life processes during 8 hours
Budding Yeasts (Monilias) SocAB 1947 4 Si Bw  
Pin Mold IFB 1950 10 Sd Bw A typical fungus
Magic Myxies Ideal 1936 Sd Bw Myxomycetes
Growth of Bacteria, Yeast and Molds SocAB 1933 20 Si Bw Includes methods of culture
Microscopic Plant Life ASBE   30 Si Bw Molds and Yeasts
Life Cycle of a Yeast Cell SoI11 1951 17 Sd Bw Demonstrates micromanipulator and other modern tools
Syngamy and Alternation of Generations in Allomyces Brice 1953 20 Si Bw Phase-contrast in a water mold includes animated sequences
Bacteria, Friend or Foe EBF 1954 Sd Col Types, habits, conditions
Blister Rusts - Enemy of the Pines UW - Gvt 1948 13 Sd Col Includes hosts, methods of control, economic significance
Dutch Elm Disease NFBCa 1948 10 Sd Col Symptoms, efforts to control
Stem Rust UW -Gvt 1950 20 Sd Col Hosts, controls, quarantine
Celite- (Diatoms) J-M Caravel 1952 35 Sd Col First half of film explains diatomaceous earth through life history
Plant Oddities ITF   10 Sd Col Insectivorous. sensitive-influences of light, temperature, and moisture upon motion
Plant Reactions Acad 1950 11 Sd Col Reactions to water, light, gravity, chemicals
Power of Plants AlmF 1950 11     Lifting of rocks, jars, weights
climbing plant UW-Educ 1950 10 Sd Bw  
Sensitivity of Plants AlmF 1950 11 Sd Bw Simple laboratory experiments with electricity. carbon dioxide, heat, gravity, light, ether
Carnivorous Plants FoND          
Carnivorous Plants Moody 1955 10 Sd Col Trap mechanisms under photomicrography
Insect Catchers of the Bog Jungle Harlow 1954 10 Sd Col Time-lapse study of mechanisms

1Producer may be identified in Section II, Producers and Distributors
2Timing = Number of minutes for completion
3Si = Silent; Sd = Sound
4Col = Colored Films; Bw = Black-White Films


Title Producer1 Date Timing2 Sound3 Color4 Description
Plant Traps EBF 1954 11 Sd Col.Bw Time-lapse of trapping mechs.
Life of a Plant EBF 1950 11 Sd Col Life cycle plus animation for internal processes
Root Development UW-Educ 1950 9 Sd Bw Microphotography of root structure and growth, animated diagrams
Allergic Diseases, 1st reel Ldrl 1939   Si Col Relation of pollen to hay fever. 2nd reel is medical
The Atom and Biological Science EBF & USAEC   12 Sd Bw Identifies and illustrates uses of radioactivity on growth, heredity
The Atom and Agriculture EBF & USAEC   10 Sd Bw Tagged atoms in fertilizers, photosynthesis, chromosomes, etc.
Gift of Green SuInf 1946 20 Sd Col Produced by NY Botanical Gardens. Shows the green key to all life. Very highly rated by botanists
Photosynthesis UW-Ed 1950 14 Sd Bw  
The Riddle of Photosynthesis Handel USAEC 1955 120 Sd Bw Research at Berkeley with radioactive carbon as tracer
Color of Life NFBCa 1954 24 Sd Col.Bw Physiological processes in maple, and seasonal change of colors
Carbon Fourteen EBF 1954 12 Sd Col.Bw Tracing history and processes of growth, decay, photosynthesis with radiocarbon
Hunger Signs NaFA 1946 15 Sd   Virgin soil. soil history, malnutrition in plants and animals; causes and correction
Eternal Cycle Handel 1954 12.5 Sd Bw Biological cycles and other experiments possible with radioisotopes
Atomic Greenhouse Handel 1954 120 Sd Bw Experiments to determine absorption and utilization of various soil atoms
Nitrogen Cycle UW-Ed 1953 14 Sd Bw Links atmosphere. soils. root hairs. nodules, fungi and bacteria
Putting Nitrogen in its Place SubFa 1954 13 Sd Col History and development of ammonia as fertilizer to supply nitrogen
The Plant Speaks AmPotl 1945   Sd Col  
1. Through Deficiency Symptoms     25      
2. Through Leaf Analysis     18      
3. Through Tissue Tests     14      
Energy Release from Food Upjohn         A molecular study
Enzymes in Dough Fermentation Std   45 Si Bw Cellular actions of proteases, invertase, and diastase in production of bread
Seifriz on Protoplasm EFLA & IND Un 1945 26 Sd Bw Physarum in micrurgy, anesthesia, toxicity, stimulation. fusion, torsion
Plant Growth and Mutation Brice 1952 11 Sd Bw Nuclear and cell division in stamen hairs of Tradescantia
The Hybrids (Corn) All-Ch   15 Sd Col Procedures in securing high yielding seed corn
The Great Story of Corn FarmFFed   31 Sd Col From prehistoric time to latest in hybridization
Heredity Variations in Coleus OhioSt 1949 11 Sd Col  
Wisconsin Corn Hybrids WisU 1950 45 Sd Col Research at Wisconsin Agriculture Experiment Station
Breeding Better Food Crops NaGB 1949 20 Sd Col Production of new quality varieties of vegetables in California
Modern Roses AssoF 1945 30 Sd Col Steps in the production of hybrids
Wizards of Svalof USDA 1941 14 Sd Bw Various techniques of wheat breeders at Svalof
Vegetable Plant Propagation EBF 1941 30 Si Bw Cuttings, layering. separation, grafting
SEED DISPERSAL            
Seed Dispersal UW-Ed 1949 18 Sd Bw Close-ups of devices
Sow and Sow AlmF 1951 10 Sd Bw Emphasis on agents of dispersal
Green Vagabonds AlmF 1951 10 Sd Bw  
Elementary Laboratory Techniques in Bacteriology UnSoCal 1954 20 Sd Col Lectures and demonstrations of cultures, transfers, microscope study
Studies in Bacteriology (3 Films) UW-Govt 1953 4
Si Bw Part I. Taxonomy and classification Part II. Motility of bacteria Part III. Cell division of bacteria

1Producer may be identified in Section II, Producers and Distributors
2Timing = Number of minutes for completion
3Si = Silent; Sd = Sound
4Col = Colored Films; Bw = Black-White Films


Title Producer1 Date Timing2 Sound3 Color4 Description
Pasteur's Legacy MFC 1946 24 Sd Bw Pasteur's scientific career and many of his experiments, Produced for Society of American Bacteriology
Story of Louis Pasteur TFC 1935 90 Sd Bw Pasteur's crusade to establish the microbe theory of disease with anthrax
Man Against Microbe Metro 1932 15 Sd,Si Bw Leewenhoek. Pasteur, Lister, Koch, Behring
Cellulose Decomposition in Nature loSt 1941 30 Si Bw Microbes which convert cellulose into soil constituents
You Can, Too (3 Reels) Heinz     Sd Bw History of food preservation from Napoleon to modern canning industry
The Smallest Foe Ledrl   20 Sd Col Research equipment, facilities, and skill against viruses at Lederle
And the Earth Shall Give Back Life Squibb 1952 25 Sd Bw The quest for earth-derived antibiotics, isolation, production testing, and clinical trials
Birth of the Soil EBF 1948 10 Sd Col Origin of the constituents of a good soil
Topsoil; Water; Soil and Water Conservation; Erosion (4 Films) USDA 1948 11 Sd Bw The dependence of city and rural communities upon farmland topsoil
Living Earth Series EBF 1948 11 Sd Col  
1. Birth of Soil           1. Formation of topsoil
2. This Vital Earth           2. Interrelation and balance
3. Arteries of Life           3. Water and forests
4. Seeds of Destruction           4. Types of erosion and conservation
Living Forest Series EBF 1949 11 Sd Col  
1. Forest Grows            
2. Forest Produces            
3. Forest Conservation            
4. The Living Forest            
Yours is the Land EBF   22 Sd Col Wise management of soil, forests. biota, water
Just Weeds NFBCa 1945 20 Sd Col Weed damage, identification and control
Lost Harvest dPont 1947 22 Sd Col Improved crops through herbicides
Story of Karmex DL Herbicide dPont   20 Sd Col The utilization of the specific herbicide in cotton

1Producer may be identified in Section II, Producers and Distributors
2Timing = Number of minutes for completion
3Si = Silent; Sd = Sound
4Col = Colored Films; Bw = Black-White Films

Educational Screen. Inc.. Blue Book of 16mm Films, 1951. 26th Annual Ed., Chicago, Illinois
Educators Progress Service Educators Guide to Free Films, 1952, Randolph, Wisconsin
Forest Service Forest Service Films, Washington 25, D. C.
Morton. Harry F., Chairman. School of Medicine, Committee on Visual Instruction in Microbiology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
United States Department of Agriculture Films and Filmstrips, Handbook 14, 1954, Government Printing Office, Washington 25. D.C.
Wilson, Carl L. Instructional Films in Botany, 1937; Instructional Films in Botany, 1949, Department of Botany, Dartmouth College Hanover, New Hampshire: Correspondence, 1956.
Wilson, H. W. & Company, Educational Film Guide, 11th Ed., 1953 and 1954, 1955, 1956 Supplements, New York 52, New York


Univ. of Oklahoma: An NSF grant will provide funds for grants-in-aid for competent students and investigators in biology to work at the 1957 summer term of the university's Biological Station, Lake Texoma. Three types of grants are available: 1. post-doctoral grants of $500; 2. predoctoral grants of $350: 3. $200 grants for superior undergraduates and beginning graduate students. Investigations to be pursued must be suitable for the Biological Station. Applications should be sent by April 10 to Carl Riggs, U. of Okla. Biological Station. Norman. Okla.

Univ. of Oregon: NSF will sponsor a 1957 summer institute in marine biology at Charleston. Oregon. in cooperation with Univ. of Oregon. Planned for college teachers of botany and zoology who need first-hand experience in marine biology, the program provides stipends, subsidies for dependents, and limited travel funds for 20 participants. Site of the program is Oregon Institute of Marine Biology at Charleston. Closing date for applications is April 1. 1957. For information and application blanks, write Robert W. Morris, director, NSF Summer Institute in Marine Biology, Univ. of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon.

Other notes on NSF grants: Approximately 4500 high school and 250 college teachers of science will receive grants for 1957 summer institutes supported by NSF to the tune of $4.800.000. Eighty-six institutes will be open only to high-school teachers of science and math., 4 will be open to both high-school and college teachers, and 5 to college teachers only. Institutes for both high-school and college teachers will be held at Claremont College, Claremont, Calif.; Montana State College, Bozeman, Mont.; Univ. of Washington, Seattle; Univ. of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. Institutes for college teachers only will be held at Univ. of Oregon, Eugene (Marine BioI.); Cornell Univ., Ithaca, N. Y. (Botany): Univ. of N. Carolina, Chapel Hill, N. C. (Chemistry); Univ. of Illinois, Urbana (Geology): Univ. of Colorado, Boulder (Math.). In addition, NSF is supporting 1957-1958 academic year institutes at 16 U.S. colleges and universities; information concerning these academic-year institutes and grants for them may be obtained from the NSF office. Washington 25. D.C.; a sum of $4,065,000 has been appropriated for grants to the 750 high-school science teachers who will attend these academic-year institutes and for other institute expenses.


Edgar Anderson resigned the Directorship of Missouri Botanical Garden in January 1957, and Hugh Cutler


has been appointed Acting Director of that institution. Anderson has received a Guggenheim grant and is currently working in mathematics and statistics at Princeton; his grant, which will support his research for at least 3 years, will enable him to conduct additional work in statistics as applied to botanical and zoological problems, to complete west coast studies of hybrid Salvias, to carry out some work in Ethiopia, and to engage in other botanical and bio-statistical activities. On his return to Mo. Bot. Gard., Anderson will have the title Curator of Useful Plants.

Recent deaths: Howard E. Pulling (professor-emeritus,Wellesley) ; John M. Beal (U. of Chicago); A. J. Kluyver (Delft, Netherlands), a Corresponding Member of Bot. Soc.; J. H. Hoskins (Univ. of Cincinnati); Henry R. Kraybill, Meat Institute Foundation, Chicago.

Recent retirements: B. C. Tharp (U. of Texas); Harold St. John (U. of Hawaii); Alma G. Stokey (Mt. Holyoke); Heber W. Youngken (Mass. College of Pharmacy); Cecil Yampolsky, New York; Walter S. Fields (USDA).

Hardy L. Shirley, Dean of State Univ. College of Forestry at Syracuse U., has been made an honorary member of the Society of Finnish Foresters for "out- standing contributions to the field of international forestry. "

Harry J. Fuller, U. of Ill., is vice-president for Section G (Botanical Sciences) of AAAS for 1957.

W. P. Jacobs, Princeton Univ., will spend the 1957 spring and summer at Marine Station, Naples, Italy, on an NSF fellowship to investigate developmental problems of siphonaceous algae.

K. B. Raper, U. of Wisc., has received a George I. Haight Travelling Research Fellowship from the Wisc. Alumni Research Foundation. Dr. Raper will visit and work at labs. in France, Netherlands, and England.


The Univ. of Illinois has purchased the 40,000 specimen herbarium of Virginius H. Chase (a nephew of Mrs. Agnes Chase) of Peoria Heights, Illinois. Born in 1876 in Wady Petra, Ill., Dr. Chase attended country school, spent two winters at Princeville Academy, the final portion of his formal education. His degrees, M.S. from Kenyon College and Doctor of Science from Bradley University, are honorary. The Chase herbarium is the last of the larger private herbaria in Illinois not yet turned over to a university or museum and represents the residue of a much larger collection distributed through 50 years to several of the large herbaria of the U.S. About 1/3 of the specimens were collected in Illinois, the others from other portions of the U.S., Mexico, Europe, South America, and New Zealand. The specimens are of exceptionally high quality and scientific value. This addition to the U. of Ill. herbarium brings its total accessions to about 400,000, making that herbarium the 4th largest in American state universities (larger herbaria are those of Universities of Calif., Minn., and Mich.). The Chase herbarium is the second important botanical acquisition of the U. of Ill. Bot. Dept. within two years, the first a collection of Gregor Mendel manuscripts, specimens, and relics of his life and work. Curator of the U. of I. herbarium is G. Neville Jones.


The Darbaker Prize Committee of the Botanical Society of America will accept nominations for an award to be announced at the annual meeting of the Society in 1957. Under terms of the bequest, the award is to be made for meritorious work in the study of the algae, particularly the microscopic algae. The Committee will base its judgment primarily on the papers published by the candidate during the last two full calendar years previous to the closing date for nominations. Only papers published in English will be considered. Nomi- nations for the 1957 award, accompanied by a statement of the merits of the case and by reprints of the publications supporting the candidacy, should be sent to the Chairman of the Committee in order to be received by May 1, 1957. The value of the Prize for 1957, which depends on the income from the trust fund, is expected to be about $200.

Harold C. Bold, Vanderbilt University; Robert W. Krauss, University of Maryland; Ruth Patrick, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia; Richard C. Starr, Indiana University; George F. Papenfuss, Chairman, University of California, Berkeley, California.


A member of Bot Soc. proposes that PSB make this suggestion: that the visits of many foreign botanists (especially Europeans) to the International Botanical Congress in Canada in 1959 will furnish an opportunity for American colleges and universities to invite some of these visitors to give lectures or to conduct short summer courses preceding and following the sessions of the Congress; names of distinguished foreign botanists who are Corresponding Members or Active Members of Bot. Soc. are included in the new Bot. Soc. Yearbook now in press. Honoraria paid to these botanists for such lectures and short courses will help defray the expenses of their travel. Think it over and be especially nice to your Dean and President if you plan to act on this suggestion.


The program for this institute, described in the last number of PSB, is the following, according to Director Harlan Banks:

June 30-July 5: Nuclear Cytology (Norman Giles, Yale); Developmental Anatomy (Adriance Foster, U. of Calif.); Economic Botany (H. J. Fuller, U. of Ill.).

July 7 -July 12: Photosynthesis (Robert Emerson, U. of Ill.); Developmental Anatomy (Adriance Foster);


Species Differences-Their Recognition and Measurement (Edgar Anderson. Mo. Bot. Garden).

July 14-July 19: Water Relations (Paul Kramer. Duke Univ.); Growth and Metabolism. including Chromatography and Isotopic Techniques (F. C. Stew- ard. Cornell); Paleobotany, Its Role in Morphology (Henry Andrews. Washington Univ.).

July 28-Aug. 2: Paleobotany (continued); Algae (Harold Bold. Vanderbilt Univ.).

Aug. 4-Aug. 9: Genetic Concepts in Biology (George Beadle. Cal. Tech.); Some Non-vascular Cryptogams (Harold Bold. Vanderbilt Univ.). .

Applications from college teachers for grants for this summer institute should reach Director Banks before April 15, 1957.


The 7th Annual Wildflower Pilgrimage to Great Smoky Mts. National Park at Gatlinburg, Tenn., will occur April 24-27. 1957. The pilgrimage, to be led by park naturalists, botanists, and photographers, will include trips to study wildflowers, mosses and ferns, and birds, and illustrated evening lectures. For further details, write A. J. Sharp, Dept of Botany, Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville.


Division of Biol. and Med. Sci. of Nat. Sci. Foundation announces that the next closing date for receipt of research proposals in life sciences is May 15, 1957. Proposals received before that date will be reviewed at the summer meetings of NSF's Advisory Panels and disposition will be made about 4 months following this date. Proposals received after May 15 will be reviewed following Fall closing date, Sept, 15, 1957. In addition to funds for support of basic research, limited funds will be available for support of research facilities and programs at biological field stations. Inquiries should be addressed to NSF, Washington 25. D.C.


Bot. Soc. Treasurer has reported to PSB Editor that he receives many notices of address changes in the autumn and at the time when dues bills become payable in December, that most of these notices are unaccompanied by information concerning what lies behind these changes. The Treasurer suggests that, if members reporting new addresses were to include some personal information about these changes (e.g.. do some of these indicate promotion in rank on changing institutions and thus professional advance, do they involve shifts from academic to non-academic careers [or vice versa], do they suggest translation of professorial gentry to administrative sinecures?) when they send in these changes, this information might constitute newsworthy items for the columns of Plant Science Bulletin. The Editor agrees: think it over, put aside your natural modesty, and, when next you send in a notice of address change, state what it's all about.


Dr. James Zetek, Curator of Barro Colorado Island Biological Lab., retired from that post on May 31, 1956. Dr. Zetek, now 70, has spent 45 years engaged in biological research and administration in the tropics. He plans now to write the history of the Barro Colorado Lab. and his memoirs and to prepare a catalog of the land. fresh-water, and marine shells of Panama. Although he is an entomologist rather than a botanist, Dr. Zetek has been helpful to many botanists who have conducted investigations on Barro Colorado. These botanists are joined by the Editorial Board of PSB in wishing for Dr. Zetek good health and the energy for the completion of these important projects. Dr. Zetek writes, "I do not yet know what I shall do with my mollusk collection. nearly 7,000 species, 35.000 specimens, about half of these in duplicate for exchanges." Pass the word.


Pines more than 4000 years old have been discovered growing at timberline in the White Mts. in eastern California by Edward Schulman and C. W. Ferguson, Jr. of the Univ. of Arizona's Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research. These pines exceed the age of the oldest known Sequoias of California by approximately 1000 years.


Heard recently about a botany professor whose students christened his car "Xylem" because of the sap which travelled in it.


A career pamphlet "Should You Be A Lawyer?" by Roscoe Pound as told to Donald Robinson and published by the New York Life Insurance Co., contains some material about the education of the famous former Dean of Harvard Law School. Writes Dean Pound: "When I was a senior at the University of Nebraska-that was quite awhile ago, in 1888, to be


exact - I started to think very seriously of botany as a career. The reason for this was simple. I was studying under an exceptional old professor of botany who had me all excited about his subject. Luckily, I asked my father what he thought of it. Father was a man of practical, good sense and he quickly convinced me that I was much better suited for law than for botany. I have felt deeply grateful to him ever since." (Reprinted through courtesy of New York Life Insurance Co.) .

The "exceptional old professor of botany" was, of course, Charles E. Bessey. Donald Rogers reports that Pound was a charter member of the Mycological Society, that he relinquished his membership in 1954.


(This letter. addressed to the Editor. has been circulated to members of the Editorial Board. who have indicated their approval of its publication.)
44 Pond Street
Jamaica Plain, Mass.
January 11, 1957

As you and so many of your members knew my late husband, Dr. Elmer D. Merrill. who was for a great many years a member of your Society, you have probably noted the review of his life and work which appeared in the July, 1956, issue of the Journal of the Arnold Arboretum. This account omitted what seems to me a most important fact relating to his last years and without this fact I feel very strongly that the record is not complete.

The article dwells at length upon my husband's work as Director of the Arnold Arboretum between 1936 and 1946. It refers particularly to his part in drawing up preliminary plans for the policy which became known in due course as the Bailey Plan. This is quite correct as far as it goes, but the article omits to state that in 1946, on study of the plan as it had evolved, Dr. Merrill became convinced that the plan would be injurious to the Arboretum. Notwithstanding Dr. Merrill's opposition, the plan, as qualified by the Harvard Corporation in 1953, was applied to the Arnold Arboretum, resulting in the transfer of most of the Arboretum's library and herbarium from the traditional headquarters at Jamaica Plain to the Harvard University Herbarium Building in Cambridge.

It required, as you must understand, a great deal of courage for Dr. Merrill publicly to reverse his position and to come out against a policy of the University. It seems proper, as I have pointed out, that the botanical world should know that from 1946 until the time of his death he opposed the above plan both privately and publicly.

I hope you will be good enough to publish this so that your members can know the facts.

Yours sincerely,
(Mrs. Elmer D. Merrill)


William S. Hillman, Research Associate, Dept. of Botany, Yale Univ., New Haven, Conn., would like to receive live specimens of any native or exotic Lemnaceae (except L. minor), particularly L. gibba, L. trisulca, L. valdiviana, and Wolfiella.


The Northeastern Section will sponsor a field foray August 20-22, inclusive, with the Univ. of Maine, Orono, Maine, as headquarters. Trips will be taken to Mt. Katahdin, University forests, Jackson Labs. at Bar Harbor, and blueberry barrens. In addition, one or two evening meetings will be held. Inquiries should be directed soon to Jesse Livingston, Dept. of Botany, Univ. of Maine, chairman of local arrangements, or to T. T. Kozlowski, Dept. of Botany, Univ. of Mass., Amherst, Mass., secretary of the section.


The 9th Pacific Science Congress of the Pacific Science Association will be held Nov. 18 - Dec. 9, 1957, under the auspices of His Majesty's Government of Thailand and the Science Society of Thailand on the campus of Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok. Organizing Chairmen of plant science sections are: M. C. Lakshanakara Kashem Santa (Botany Section), Ministry of Agriculture, Bangkok; Thiem Komkris (Forestry Section), Dept. of Forestry, Ministry of Agriculture, Bangkok; Insee Chandrastitya (Crop Improvement Section), National Development Co., Ltd., Bangkok. Chairmen of plant science standing committees are: F. Raymond Fosberg (Botany), Pacific Vegetation Project, National Res. Council, 2101 Constitution Ave., Washington 25, D.C.; G. S. Brown (Forest Resources), District Forest Office, Kuala Pilah, Negri Sembilan, Malaya; T. H. Shen (Crop Improvement), Joint Commission on Rural Reconstruction, Taipeh, Taiwan, Formosa. American botanists and other scientists interested in attending the Congress or in learning more about its program should communicate with Harold J. Coolidge, Pacific Science Board, Nat. Res. Council, 2100 Constitution Ave., Washington 25, D.C. NRC is the official representative of the U. S. in the Pacific Science Association. The 8th Pacific Science Congress was held in the Philippines in 1953, with 123 U. S. participants.


Members of the General Section of the Botanical Society are reminded that they voted a $1.00 assessment for each member to defray the expenses of mimeographing abstracts. This is now due. Checks or money orders should be made payable to Barbara F. Palser, Secretary of the Section, and sent to her at the Department of Botany, University of Chicago, Chicago 37, Illinois. The few members who sent $1.00 last year need not do so this year unless they so desire.



Construction of a new biology building has commenced at the Univ. of Illinois. The first wing will house the departments of bacteriology and physiology and the biology library; a wing to be erected later will house botany, entomology, and zoology.


William B. Drew. Mich. State Univ., has just completed his sentence as Business Manager of American Journal of Botany and now looks forward to peace, quiet, and the restoration of his shattered nerves. James E. Canright, Dept. of Botany, Indiana Univ., Bloomington. Indiana, has succeeded Drew as Bus. Mgr. of Amer. Jour. Bot. PSB expresses to Drew the gratitude of members of Bot. Soc. for his valuable services and to Canright applause for his bravery in taking over this time-demanding and exacting job upon which the success of our journal so largely depends.


Many biologists have noted that college courses and textbooks often fail to keep pace with advances in their science. What causes concern is not that discoveries inevitably somewhat outdate any book before it can be printed, nor the omission of specific research results. Rather, what is serious is the inertia impeding the redirection of instruction in accord with fundamental changes in many fields during recent decades. Courses may also have inadequate regard for changing student needs; students must be prepared for the biology of 1970 and 1980, not that of 1900 or even 1950. Obviously, the complexity and amount of information in any field dictate severe selectivity in designing courses. It matters greatly how that selection is made if the student, in the limited compass of a course. is to be given a foundation that will serve well for the future. But tradition and the fact that a college professor may be asked to teach subjects in which he is not expert often lead to the persistence of more or less anachronistic patterns of teaching.

The Committee on Educational Policies of the Biology Council, Division of Biology and Agriculture, National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council, has proposed a method for meeting this situation. The plan can be applied to any field by any responsible and informed group. The Committee itself, aided by a grant from the National Science Foundation, will test the plan in two subjects. If trial indicates that the approach is sound, the Committee hopes that the demonstration will encourage professional societies and others concerned with particular subjects to sponsor similar sudies.

Basically, he idea adapts the research conference technique to the development of courses, recognizing that, even in a limited field, one person's knowledge and wisdom rarely suffice. For a subject considered by those in the field to need scrutiny, an ad hoc panel would be set up, composed of biologists who represent different facets of the discipline and whose competence in research, experience in teaching, and flexibility of thought are generally recognized. The panel would make a wholly fresh start in designing the course, putting present practices aside in so far as possible. It would first consider what function the course should serve, what understanding and information students who take the course - or might do so if it were properly developed - need. This question should not be interpreted as stressing applications alone; undergraduate courses should primarily contribute to the student's maturation as a biologist through emphasis on comprehension of principles. Keeping these objectives and the present state of our knowledge in mind, the panel would then define topics to be included and the place and weight assigned to each, noting what time-worn material may be eliminated, what sequential treatment will most effectively impart a coherent picture of the subject as an area of systematic knowledge and. Especially, as a sphere for continuing inquiry. Through correspondence and meetings, the panel would exchange ideas and tentative outlines until it evolves an acceptable, fairly detailed program, perhaps with suggestions for variations. Finally, the panel would publish its report, exposing it to professional criticism and making it available for the guidance of teachers and authors. The panel would then disband, for the objective is not to replace one orthodoxy by another, but rather to initiate what should become a continuing process of periodic re-evaluation of courses.

The trial involves panels on Parasitism and Systematic Botany. After considering many suggestions from a variety of sources, including the American Society of Parasitologists and the American Society of Plant Taxonomists, panel members were selected by the Committee and appointed by the Chairman of the Division. The panels are now at work; reports due by June 30, 1957 will be published in journals or through the Academy-Research Council. Both panels will be glad to receive suggestions and ideas on the form and content of undergraduate courses in their subjects.

The ad hoc Panel on Systematic Botany Courses includes Lincoln Constance, Univ. of Calif. (Berkeley), Chairman; Harlan Lewis, Univ. of Calif. (Los An- geles); Reed Rollins, Harvard Univ.; Robert Thorne, State Univ. of Iowa; and Herbert Wagner, Univ. of Mich.

Members of the ad hoc Panel on Parasitism Courses are Clay G. Huff, Naval Med. Res. Institute, Chairman; L. O. Nolf, State Univ. of Iowa; Richard J. Porter, Univ. of Mich.; Clark P. Read, Johns Hopkins Univ.; A. Glenn Richards, Univ. of Minn.; A. J. Riker, Univ. of Wisc.; and Leslie A. Stauber, Rutgers Univ. (John A. Behnke, Chairman. Subcommittee on Instructional Materials and Publications Committee on Educational Policies, Nat. Acad. Sci.-Nat. Res. Council).

(Editor's note: the Editor would be pleased to have comments from members of Bot. Soc. on this proposal. since he plans to write an editorial on this subject for July 1957 PSB.)

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