college classes collège

Apr 28, 2010

Nearly every college student sits through lengthy lectures and carts around mammoth textbooks. Unfortunately, these methods often do little to prepare students for their lives in the working world. Now, many graduate and undergraduate programs are supplementing their meat and potatoes—lecture-driven classes—with some dessert: career-oriented offerings. In these classes, students will shake hands and share ideas with real-world business leaders, find their own ways to isolate proteins in a lab setting, or make closing arguments in a simulated court case


University of Colorado lab to study in-depth reporting on mobile devices

Apr 19, 2010

Steve Outing reports that he is working with the University of Colorado School of Journalism & Mass Communication to create a journalism and technology laboratory called the Digital Media Test Kitchen. The Test Kitchen's first project, a collaboration with I-News: The Rocky Mountain Investigative News Network, will focus on how to present in-depth reporting on mobile (small screen) devices. Outing (a former Poynter staffer) said on his blog that the objective of the lab will be to study "news business models, new techniques for journalism, and new technologies for news." He described the collaborative approach this way: "We are bringing together Journalism students and faculty with their colleagues from Computer Science and Business ... as well as outside partners, to address the problems of journalism and the news sector and invent new solutions."


Liverpool University gets £1m to dig up undersea oil secrets, writes Peter Elson

Feb 25 2010

LEADING world oil companies have given £1m to University of Liverpool scientists to explore oil and gas reserves buried deep in submarine channels.
The project’s first sample bores are now being analysed in South Africa.
The Liverpool scientists are working with 13 leading oil companies to increase knowledge of these fossil fuel reservoirs.
Prof Stephen Flint and Dr David Hodgson, from the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, have been awarded £1m by a global consortium of oil producers including BP, Shell, Exxon, Mobil and Total for their studies.
They are researching how sand is transported along deep-sea submarine channels and deposited in them at undersea continental margins.
Submarine channels transport sediments such as sand, mud and silt from shallow marine waters to the deep sea.
They contain much of the recently discovered oil and gas reserves outside the Middle East.
The cost of drilling a well to extract new reserves in slope channel reservoirs can cost over $50m (£29m), so it is crucial that the right position is targeted.
Ancient channel systems in the Karoo area of South Africa, which are now exposed above sea level, are being studied.
Only sand-filled channels can produce oil, so scientists at the University have to predict which channels are filled with mud and silt and therefore unusable, based on analysis of the characteristics of the Karoo systems.
Prof Flint said: “We have used the latest laser imaging, satellite mapping, helicopter-based high resolution photography and 3-D computer modelling in our field work to capture the data required to understand and predict sand transfer and storage mechanisms.
“The computer models will be used by oil companies to guide development of new oilfields across the globe, helping to guarantee future energy supplies and increase the efficiency of oil recovery.”
Academically, the data will improve understanding of the mechanisms of sand transfer from shallow shelf to deep ocean floor, helping to predict and analyse how submarine landslides and natural hazards like tsunamis occur.
Prof Flint said: “We’ve drilled boreholes in the Karoo and retrieved tubes of rock core.
“We have a PhD student in South Africa analysing these rock cores. Being in the Karoo is like walking on a dry sea floor.
“It’s far easier and cheaper than surveying at sea.
“This helps us to understand how channels form and the findings can guide drilling for wells.
“We’re not actually looking for oil, but the detailed data as to where it could be.
“An example is the sand coming down the River Congo and flushing along these channels, on to the sea floor.
“As more sediment covers them, they act like giant longitudinal sponges. The oil migrates into these sponges and we work out which direction and where these channels are.
“The oil companies need all the data they can get, so exploration can be as focused as possible.”



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