Sept. 22, 2003 Dr. Arnold M. Clark, a resident of Woods Hole, Mass., and biology professor who advanced the ideas of teaching genetics in schools and understanding science as part of culture, died Sept. 13, in Falmouth, Mass., from complications following a stroke. He was 87 years old.
Dr. Clark served the University of Delaware from 1946 to 1981 during an exciting period in which the school grew from a small college into large university. He helped establish a graduate program in biological sciences and guided 20 students to masters degrees and 10 to doctoral degrees. He initiated courses in biology for nonmajors and served for 10 years as faculty representative to the Athletic Governing Board.
Throughout his career, Dr. Clark focused his research on four primary areas: radiation biology, developmental genetics, aging and human heredity. Along with his duties at the University of Delaware, he was in residence at the Oak Ridge and the Brookhaven National Laboratories and the Marine Biological Laboratory of Woods Hole.
In the 1960s, Dr. Clark participated in an early study of the effects of outer space on mutation rates in a NASA project at Cape Kennedy (1967). He was elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (1960). His work to increase public concern about damage from ionizing radiation helped establish a radiation safety code in Delaware. He directed a course titled "Science and Society" at the Oak Ridge Institute for Nuclear Studies (1965).
Dr. Clarks work in heredity included initiating a human heredity program at the University of Delaware, and he studied the chromosomal basis of Down Syndrome at the Hospital for the Mentally Retarded. Among his many distinctions, Dr. Clark pushed for the study of medical genetics and genetic counseling at a time before genetics was taught in medical schools. He was a member of the Genetics Society of America and the American Society of Human Genetics.
His teaching interests were directed largely to the idea of understanding science as a cultural force and teaching science for the common person. He wrote extensively about these subjects and published several works, including "Understanding Science Through Evolution," "Evolution and Cultural Literacy," "Seeing Biology," "Teaching Within the Cracks" and "Teaching EvolutionOne More Time."
After his retirement from the University of Delaware in 1981, Dr. Clark moved to the scientific community of Woods Hole where he concentrated on tennis, fishing and ibrary work at the Marine Biological Laboratory. He served as a volunteer at the Falmouth High School and developed course work on "Human Heredity and Human Affairs" in the Elderhostel Program.
Dr. Clark is survived by his wife, Constance (Mitchell) Clark, a son, Daniel Clark of Avon, Mass., a daughter, Jane Clark Tourtellotte of Los Angeles, and two grandchildren.