Faculty of Science news
Congratulations to Prof. Fred Genesee (Department of Psychology) for winning the 2014 Gold Medal Award from the Canadian Psychological Association. This award recognizes distinguished and enduring lifetime contributions to Canadian Psychology, and is fitting, as Professor Genesee's research on immersion education, bilingualism, and language acquisition has had enormous impact on science and public policy over the course of several decades.
Prof. Ehab Abouheif and Prof. Aashish Clerk, NSERC E.W.R Steacie Memorial Fellowships; Michael Lifshitz, NSERC André Hamer Postgraduate Prize
Three McGill researchers among the recipients of NSERC national prizes Two McGill researchers—Prof. Ehab Abouheif, of the Department of Biology, and Prof. Aashish Clerk, Department of Physics—have been named as 2014 recipients of E.W.R Steacie Memorial Fellowships, awarded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada’s (NSERC). In addition, doctoral candidate Michael Lifshitz, working in the cognitive neuroscience lab of Prof. Amir Raz, has won NSERC’s 2013 André Hamer Postgraduate Prize.
Congratulations to Dr. Derek Gray, Emeritus Professor in the Department of Chemistry, for winning the 2014 Macromolecular Science and Engineering Award from the Chemical Institute of Canada. This award is presented to an individual who, while residing in Canada, has made a distinguished contribution to macromolecular science or engineering. Professor Gray’s research interests have focussed on the structural polymers in wood, and in particular on cellulose and cellulose derivatives.
Dr. Oz has absolutely gone haywire. In pushing the "alkaline" diet he takes a piece of kidney and pours acid on it to show how it disintegrates and infers this is happening in the body. This is insane. The pH of the blood is maintained at about 7.35 no matter what the diet. Oz has lost all perspective and is falling deeper and deeper into the abyss of quackery.
The wizardry of Dr. Oz The surgeon and TV celebrity has succeeded in winning fans and influencing public health debates - which troubles some experts. Mehmet Oz's followers believe he is a trustworthy, serious-minded (and hot) physician. His equally fervent flock of critics say he is a fad-foisting, ratings-grubbing (and smart) TV celebrity. In the 10 years since Oprah dubbed him "America's Doctor," the 53-year-old Oz has shown he is comfortable in both roles.
"Food for Thought" launches at exactly noon today! At 12:00 you can log on and watch the first lecture. The course is totally free but you have to register. We now have over 20,000 students registered in 150 countries. https://www.edx.org/course/mcgillx/mcgillx-chem181x-food-thought-1213
What is it like to teach a class of more than 20,000 students? I don’t know, but I’m about to find out. Colleagues David Harpp and Ariel Fenster and I have been selected to offer McGill’s first “massive open online course,” known in the trade as a MOOC.
Many strains of E.coli are necessary for human digestion, but O157:H7 can be deadly. To view the video, click here
We are pleased to announce that we now have an “App” both for Apple and Android devices so that the McGill Office for Science and Society’s nifty and sometimes quirky science can always be at your fingertips. The Apps are free and can be downloaded here: For Apple devices, download the app at: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/office-for-science-society/id779488353?mt=8
SKEPTICAL INQUIRER: Miracles are pretty rare events. Except on television’s Dr. Oz Show, where they appear with astonishing frequency. Oz of course doesn’t claim to raise the dead or part the Red Sea, but he does raise people’s hopes of parting with their flab. And he’s certainly not shy about flinging the word miracle about. But it seems miracles fade as quickly as they appear.
Physics World cites work by South Pole Telescope team Scientists in McGill’s Astrophysics group have been honoured in Physics World magazine’s list of top 10 breakthroughs in physics for 2013.
Drilling in Japan Trench by international scientific team finds unusually thin, slippery geological fault The devastating tsunami that struck Japan’s Tohoku region in March 2011 was touched off by a submarine earthquake far more massive than anything geologists had expected in that zone.
Congratulations to Prof. Niky Kamran (Department of Mathematics and Statistics) for receiving the 2014 CRM-Fields-PIMS Prize, Canada's premier prize in mathematics. Professor Kamran's achievements lie in the areas of analysis and differential geometry. The prize citation highlights both his work on the topic of exterior differential systems and his contributions to the mathematical analysis of the Einstein equations of general relativity.