A mathematical sightseeing tour of the natural world from the author of THE MAGICAL MAZE Why do many flowers have five or eight petals, but very few six or seven? Why do snowflakes have sixfold symmetry? Why do tigers have stripes but leopards have spots? Mathematics is to nature as Sherlock Holmes is to evidence. Mathematics can look at a single snowflake and deduce the atomic geometry of its crystals; it can start with a violin string and uncover the existence of radio waves. And mathematics still has the power to open our eyes to new and unsuspected regularities - the secret structure of a cloud or the hidden rhythms of the weather. There are patterns in the world we are now seeing for the first time - patterns at the frontier of science, yet patterns so simple that anybody can see them once they know where to look.
The contemporary discipline of biolinguistics is beginning to have the feel of scientific inquiry. Biolinguistics--especially the work of Noam Chomsky--suggests that the design of language may be "perfect": language is an optimal solution to conditions of sound and meaning. What is the scope of this inquiry? Which aspect of nature does this science investigate? What is its relation to the rest of science? What notions of language and mind are under investigation? This book is a study of such foundational questions. Exploring Chomsky's claims, Nirmalangshu Mukherji argues that the significance of biolinguistic inquiry extends beyond the domain of language. Biolinguistics is primarily concerned with grammars that represent just the computational aspects of the mind/brain. This restriction to grammars, Mukherji argues, opens the possibility that the computational system of human language may be involved in each cognitive system that requires similar computational resources. Deploying analytical argumentation and empirical evidence, Mukherji suggests that a computational system of language consisting of very specific principles and operations is likely to be involved in each articulatory symbol system--such as music--that manifests unboundedness. In that sense, the biolinguistics approach may have identified, after thousands of years of inquiry, a specific structure of the human mind.
Team working and learning through reflection are both fundamental to quality healthcare. This book is the first to explore the use of the practices of reflection to develop health care teams that can deliver sustainable, high-quality personalised care. Developing the Reflective Healthcare Team is structured in three parts which are about new views of reflective practice, improving team working, and the use of the TA2LK facilitative reflective process to develop high performing teams.
Fundamentals of Biogeographyoffers a fresh, uptodate, introduction to biogeography, explaining the ecology, geography and history of animals and plants. The book defines and examines populations, communities and ecosystems - examining where different animals and plants live and how they came to be living there, investigating how populations grow, interact and survive. Stressing the role of ecological, geographical, historical and human factors in fashioning animal and plant distributions, Huggett reveals how life has and is adapting to its biological and physical surroundings. The book includes several sections on human attitudes to Nature differ, and how biogeography can affect conservation practice. As well as explaining key concepts and interactions, Huggett tackles many topical and controversial environmental and ethical concerns including: animal rights, species exploitation, habitat fragmentation, biodiversity, metapopulations, patchy landscapes and chaos. Illustrated throughout with informative diagrams and photos, and including chapter summaries, guides to further reading and an extensive glossary of key terms, Fundamentals of Biogeographypresents an engaging introduction for students.
In the social sciences today, students are taught theory by reading and analyzing the works of Karl Marx, Max Weber, and other foundational figures of the discipline. What they rarely learn, however, is how to actually theorize. The Art of Social Theory is a practical guide to doing just that. In this one-of-a-kind user's manual for social theorists, Richard Swedberg explains how theorizing occurs in what he calls the context of discovery, a process in which the researcher gathers preliminary data and thinks creatively about it using tools such as metaphor, analogy, and typology. He guides readers through each step of the theorist’s art, from observation and naming to concept formation and explanation. To theorize well, you also need a sound knowledge of existing social theory. Swedberg introduces readers to the most important theories and concepts, and discusses how to go about mastering them. If you can think, you can also learn to theorize. This book shows you how. Concise and accessible, The Art of Social Theory features helpful examples throughout, and also provides practical exercises that enable readers to learn through doing.
Learning and teaching complex cultural knowledge calls for meaningful participation in different kinds of symbolic practices, which in turn are supported by a wide range of external representations, as gestures, oral language, graphic representations, writing and many other systems designed to account for properties and relations on some 2- or 3-dimensional objects. Children start their apprenticeship of these symbolic practices very early in life. But being able to understand and use them in fluid and flexible ways poses serious challenges for learners and teachers across educational levels, from kindergarten to university. This book is intended as a step in the path towards a better understanding of the dynamic relations between different symbolic practices and the acquisition of knowledge in various learning domains, settings and levels. Researchers from almost twenty institutions in three different continents present first hand research in this emerging area of study and reflect on the particular ways and processes whereby participation in symbolic practices based on a diversity of external representations promotes learning in specific fields of knowledge. The book will be useful for persons interested in education, as well as cognitive psychologists, linguists and those concerned by the generation, appropriation, transmission and communication of knowledge.