Abstract Title

Session S-05I: Education, Communication, and Citizen Science

Keywords

Citizens/Education

Start Date

1-5-2014 5:00 PM

End Date

1-5-2014 6:30 PM

Description

The foundation of scientific inquiry at the Ocean Research College Academy (ORCA) is student investigation of the local estuary system. This early college program through the Everett Community College gives a two-year cohort of high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to have an educational experience that integrates science, math, English, humanities, and history with the local marine environment while earning a high school diploma and associates degree. Students acquire content knowledge in marine science while carrying out research on the State of Possession Sound (SOPS), a project designed to integrate core learning outcomes in the chemical, physical, geological, and biological components of the marine system. Learners are empowered by their role as undergraduate researchers who are capable of generating their own hypothesis, investigating their questions by using both a historical data set and continued collection of data on SOPS cruises, and making connections between the classroom content and their field experience. The first quarter field experiences are comprised of an overnight retreat for incoming students at a regional research center, the annual River Trip and monthly SOPS cruises to support their developing understanding of the estuary system, boat-based research and oceanographic instrumentation. Students complete group projects to address questions about water chemistry fluctuations in the estuary system using collected data. Winter quarter projects in the Introduction to Oceanography course reflect increasing sophistication of hypotheses and consideration of more variables as students delve deeper into marine science. Spring quarter Marine Biology culminates in the integration of biological aspects of ongoing research projects, as well as more regional field experiences. Second-year students complete individual research projects for English 102 that build on the skills and scientific approach to understanding that are developed during the first year. By focusing on students’ ideas and local data, the instructional design engages students in the research process to become more informed and science-minded citizens.

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May 1st, 5:00 PM May 1st, 6:30 PM

Undergraduate Research and Student Engagement as Citizen Scientists in Introductory Marine Science Courses

Room 6C

The foundation of scientific inquiry at the Ocean Research College Academy (ORCA) is student investigation of the local estuary system. This early college program through the Everett Community College gives a two-year cohort of high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to have an educational experience that integrates science, math, English, humanities, and history with the local marine environment while earning a high school diploma and associates degree. Students acquire content knowledge in marine science while carrying out research on the State of Possession Sound (SOPS), a project designed to integrate core learning outcomes in the chemical, physical, geological, and biological components of the marine system. Learners are empowered by their role as undergraduate researchers who are capable of generating their own hypothesis, investigating their questions by using both a historical data set and continued collection of data on SOPS cruises, and making connections between the classroom content and their field experience. The first quarter field experiences are comprised of an overnight retreat for incoming students at a regional research center, the annual River Trip and monthly SOPS cruises to support their developing understanding of the estuary system, boat-based research and oceanographic instrumentation. Students complete group projects to address questions about water chemistry fluctuations in the estuary system using collected data. Winter quarter projects in the Introduction to Oceanography course reflect increasing sophistication of hypotheses and consideration of more variables as students delve deeper into marine science. Spring quarter Marine Biology culminates in the integration of biological aspects of ongoing research projects, as well as more regional field experiences. Second-year students complete individual research projects for English 102 that build on the skills and scientific approach to understanding that are developed during the first year. By focusing on students’ ideas and local data, the instructional design engages students in the research process to become more informed and science-minded citizens.