1. Randy Kochevar
  2. http://ltd.edc.org/people/randy-kochevar
  3. Director, Oceans of Data Institute
  4. Ocean Tracks: Investigating Marine Migrations in a Changing Ocean
  5. http://oceansofdata.org
  6. Education Development Center
  1. Erin Bardar
  2. Senior Curriculum/Instructional Design Associate
  3. Ocean Tracks: Investigating Marine Migrations in a Changing Ocean
  4. http://oceansofdata.org
  5. Education Development Center, Oceans of Data Institute
  1. Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  2. Ocean Tracks: Investigating Marine Migrations in a Changing Ocean
  3. http://oceansofdata.org
  4. Education Development Center, Oceans of Data Institute
  1. Leana Nordstrom
  2. Ocean Tracks: Investigating Marine Migrations in a Changing Ocean
  3. http://oceansofdata.org
  4. Education Development Center, Oceans of Data Institute
  1. Jessica Sickler
  2. Consultant
  3. Ocean Tracks: Investigating Marine Migrations in a Changing Ocean
  4. http://oceansofdata.org
  5. J. Sickler Consulting, LLC
Public Discussion
  • Icon for: Randy Kochevar

    Randy Kochevar

    Presenter
    May 15, 2017 | 02:58 a.m.

    Greetings! Thank you for visiting our video. On behalf of the Ocean Tracks team, I hope that you enjoy it! We look forward to receiving your comments and questions, and will be doing our best to respond right away.

    Best wishes,

    Randy

     

    Dr. Randy Kochevar

    Director, Oceans of Data Institute, EDC

  • Icon for: Donna Charlevoix

    Donna Charlevoix

    Program Director
    May 15, 2017 | 12:22 p.m.

    What a great project. I've been aware of Oceans of Data for some time now but had not heard about Ocean Tracks. I'm curious as to how you are disseminating your tool for adoption by educators. Do you run professional development workshops for instructors/teachers? Online dissemination? Other avenues? Are you also able to track adoption and usage and is that information informing your dissemination and training methods? Thanks so much!

     
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    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
    Sarah Haavind
  • Icon for: Randy Kochevar

    Randy Kochevar

    Presenter
    May 15, 2017 | 01:26 p.m.

    Thanks for your kind words Donna! The work we've done so far on Ocean Tracks focused initially on development of the interface (through an NSF DRK-12 grant), and then on developing the curriculum modules and student supports (through an NSF IUSE/EHR grant). We are just now turning our attention to teacher training materials and broadening dissemination. But Ocean Tracks is free and available to anyone who wants to use it - so I'd encourage anyone who is interested to check it out!

    We are able to track users, and we've found that it's being regularly visited by folks from 85 different countries, and all 50 states! Regarding how our users have impacted development - one of our initial surprises was to discover that, even though it was initially developed for use in high school classrooms, many undergraduate marine biology and oceanography instructors found it useful in their classrooms - so we now have learning materials available for both high school and undergraduate audiences.

    Because of the broad interest from around the globe, we have also been exploring ways of adding datasets from other ocean basins. And we are now doing some tests with a prototype version that adds data visualization and anaysis tools from Concord Consortium's "Common Online Data Analysis Platform" (CODAP). So keep checking back on the Oceans of Data website, and we'll provide updates as these new features come on line!

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
    Natalya St. Clair
    Sarah Haavind
  • Icon for: Sarah Haavind

    Sarah Haavind

    Facilitator
    May 15, 2017 | 01:03 p.m.

     Hello Randy and Ocean Tracks visitors,

    Exploring Ocean Tracks and seeing the ocean through the eyes of its inhabitants via Tagging of Pacific Predators (TOPP) is clearly an engaging way to introduce learners to the value of using big data sets to make new discoveries and ask new questions about our planet. Exciting work! Donna asks some great questions above. Related, I noticed with interest your recent Faculty Workshop on your oceansofdata.org linked site. Can you share some of your current thinking or next steps that emerged from the session?

    There is much to explore via the links you share on the right-hand navigation bar. I’m sure others will have questions as well. Thank you for sharing your work, I look forward to hearing more visitors questions and further comments!

     

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Erin Bardar

    Erin Bardar

    Co-Presenter
    May 15, 2017 | 02:27 p.m.

    Hi Sarah! We are indeed fresh off our Ocean Tracks-College Edition faculty workshop, held last week at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. This workshop brought together several members of the OT-CE research and development team with three faculty members who pilot tested our undergraduate curriculum this past fall to: 1) reflect on and interpret a wealth of research findings, 2) create a plan for further revisions/refinements to OT-CE curriculum materials and instructor supports, and 3) begin the revision process. We were beyond thrilled with the energy and insight the faculty brought in sharing their individual experiences teaching with Ocean Tracks. We had two west coast community college faculty in attendance (one who used OT-CE in a course for majors and one who used it in an intro-level course for non-majors) as well as one instructor from a four-year college on the east coast who teaches a 200-level course with an extensive field component. Even with such a small group, we were able to get perspective on a wide range of implementation scenarios and their associated successes and challenges. During our time together, each faculty member was paired up with a member of our curriculum team to work through one or more of the six curriculum modules to identify key areas for revision, primarily focusing on how we can use what we learned from our research results and review of student work samples to further support development of data literacy and critical thinking skills; how students communicate with data, particularly with respect to quantitative comparisons and using appropriate scientific vocabulary; and where instructors might need additional background information, technical support, or tips on how to effectively facilitate discussion. Over the next two months, the curriculum team will complete these revisions with feedback from our faculty participants. We are also very excited that each of the faculty who attended the workshop will be writing an entry for the Oceans of Data Institute Blog to share their personal story of using Ocean Tracks in the classroom. Keep an eye out for those over the summer!

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
    Natalya St. Clair
    Sarah Haavind
  • Icon for: Sarah Haavind

    Sarah Haavind

    Facilitator
    May 15, 2017 | 02:50 p.m.

    Erin,

    So glad that I asked! The upcoming blog stories should be terrific. I wonder if your description of your upcoming work here opens up more questions and connections from our visitors...please chime in!

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Breanne Litts

    Breanne Litts

    Facilitator
    May 15, 2017 | 11:10 p.m.

    Ocean Tracks is an intriguing way to visualize some large data sets. I've seen similar models in other content areas and am curious what your experience has been in how teachers and students have taken up the tool. For instance, I initially wonder what the connection between the library and the map is meant to be. Often there's a tension between data and ease-of-use in UI/UX design, so I'm interested to know whether there's training or other resources that teachers need before implementation. I see the blog is coming, but I'd also like to hear some stories of how this has been used in classrooms. And/or ideas from some current practitioners and how they might envision using it.

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Jessica Sickler

    Jessica Sickler

    Co-Presenter
    May 16, 2017 | 09:48 a.m.

    Breanne,

    I'll chime in with just a couple of thoughts in addition to Randy and Erin's thorough answers.  Regarding the link between the library and map, we just had a discussion about this at last week's faculty workshop -- In at least one module, the library is used as an additional data source that needs to be triangulated with analysis of map-based data in order to do the higher-level critical thinking that is required.  Students have to synthesize what they interpret from patterns in the data alongside the meaning from contextual information about the ocean or human systems affecting the ocean.  The example I'm thinking of is a module that asks students to propose a Marine Protected Area for white sharks.  They have to reason through the relationships between the data of animal movements, the data of human impacts, and all of the other logistical and political parameters that would impact the efficacy of such an MPA, much of which they will pull out of reading in the library.

     

    The other resource I'd point to regarding the relationship between data and UI/UX is the Visualizing Oceans of Data report, which was a foundation for the development of Ocean Tracks.  It's a comprehensive review of design strategies to make data interfaces accessible and still very rich learning environments.

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Randy Kochevar

    Randy Kochevar

    Presenter
    May 16, 2017 | 12:03 a.m.

    Hi Breanne,

    Thank you for your questions. There is a lot of ground to cover here, so I'll take a first stab at it, and will welcome additional thoughts from my co-presenters! Also - feel free to ask follow-ups if I'm not getting to the things you're most interested in.

    Regarding the library - As we were starting to test Ocean Tracks in some high school classrooms, we realized that there a lots of background questions that would fall outside of most teachers' experience, like "How do the electronic tags work?" "Why do we care about chlorophyll-a?" and "What the heck is 'Curviness?'" So we created the library from scratch, specifically to address those kinds of basic background questions that students (and teachers!) are bound to ask sooner or later. There are some resources in the library which are linked directly from content in the map, but I think the more typical use case is that students are directed to read about something in the library as part of the learning modules (which can be found under the "Curriculum" tab).

    Regarding the tension between data and ease-of-use in UI/UX design -- This is indeed a challenge, and I'd say that it's especially daunting when you're trying to design a Web-based experience that can be used on a wide range of computers, in settings where the wireless connection is less-than-optimal! With Ocean Tracks, we tried to provide enough data through the interface so students could make meaningful comparisons (e.g., among different species, or among different seasons or years), without providing so much data that they'd be likely to "bury themselves" when they (inevitably) try to turn on all the tracks and all of the environmental layers at once. 

    Regarding teacher training - In each round of classroom testing, we've spent a bit of time with teachers orienting them to the various features in the interface, and walking them through the curriculum materials, prior to the beginning of each term. Because these have been relatively small trials (9 undergraduate classrooms in the most recent test), we have also been available to answer questions and to help troubleshoot technical issues as they have arisen. However, we realize that that is not a viable solution for dozens or hundreds of classrooms - so we are now seeking funding to develop the materials and training that instructors will need to implement Ocean Tracks in their own classrooms, without in-person intervention from us!

    Regarding how Ocean Tracks has been used in classrooms - We've now tested Ocean Tracks in high school and undergraduate classrooms, in courses including high school biology and environmental science, undergraduate marine biology for non-majors, introductory oceanography, and some upper-division oceanography courses. It has been exciting to see that instructors have found relevant and useful applications in such a wide variety of settings - and we've been surprised to discover how readily it has been adapted at both the high school and college levels.

    With that said, the Ocean Tracks materials are designed to be used in a very inquiry-driven setting - which is not necessarily "the norm" in all classrooms. Furthermore, the integration of data visualization and analysis skills - which have often been relegated to statistics classrooms - into science classrooms, has occasionally pushed instructors into unfamiliar territory; although most of them have worked extensively with data (especially at the undergraduate level), many of them have never actually taught with data. I think that developing the methods for effectively teaching these skills, including the critical and analytical thinking skills that data literacy requires, is the next great hurdle we need to overcome.

    I'm sorry for the long-winded answer, and I hope it was helpful! I'd welcome others to jump in on this as well!

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Erin Bardar

    Erin Bardar

    Co-Presenter
    May 16, 2017 | 09:34 a.m.

    A couple quick additions to Randy's fantastically thorough response...The undergraduate curriculum modules, which have been the focus of our energy over the last 2+ years, are aimed at the introductory undergraduate level (i.e., 100-level non-majors) and were designed to be implemented in a 3 hour face-to-face lab setting with an instructor present to act as a facilitator. Knowing that the time it takes students to complete a module will vary by skill level, background knowledge, and the speed of their device, we have made suggestions to instructors that they might consider doing the Engage and Explore sections during class time and assign the Synthesize section as homework if time is short. As Randy said, however, we have seen the modules used successfully in a variety of classroom settings from high school through upper-level marine science majors and even online courses. Some students find the modules challenging (which we think is largely a good thing!) because of the open-ended nature of asking questions of real data, but we've also gotten feedback from students that using Ocean Tracks has been a rewarding experience, saying things like, "My interest in the ocean has really increased since using Ocean Tracks! Now I catch myself watching documentaries, and I never would have done that before.” and "I learned more in 6 modules than all other classes I’ve had in my life.” Faculty have indicated that a major draw for them is the focus on developing students' critical thinking skills, which we are seeing as a goal for many undergraduate institutions and departments. They also like the modularity of the curriculum, which gives them flexibility to pick and choose the modules that fit best within their existing course structure and flow. Contextual issues, such as available time, access to devices/internet, and differences in how quickly students progress through a module, have come up as common challenges instructors face when navigating how to implement Ocean Tracks. We've gotten some great suggestions from faculty about where to include additional tutorial videos, discussion prompts, and other facilitation tips that we would love to develop further with a follow-on grant. 

     
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    Stephanne Ebsen-Clark
  • Icon for: Nancy Shapiro

    Nancy Shapiro

    Facilitator
    May 16, 2017 | 03:21 p.m.

    Great conversation on this project already!  I'm really intrigued by the "big data" component of the project--where the video started...Although not an expert, I see big data as both 'awe-some" and "awe-ful!"  Helping students and teachers understand the capacities/possibilities/flaws of big data tools may be one of the most important things we can do for the generation progressing through our education system right now.  their world will be so much different from ours--and the greater their understanding of how these data are generated, collected, analyzed, used, etc, the safer we will all be!

    Are you finding ways to bring high school teachers into this work?  Are you working with teacher ed programs?  or focusing more on in-service training for teachers?  or are you not ready to go there yet?  It seems to me that once you figure out how to work with Ocean Tracks, it's a short hop to using many other Nat Geo, NOAA, and NASA tracking information to challenge students (and teachers) to "think big!" 

  • Icon for: Randy Kochevar

    Randy Kochevar

    Presenter
    May 16, 2017 | 04:32 p.m.

    Hi Nancy! Thanks for your note!

    I agree that "big data" is changing our lives in countless ways - both as consumers and as producers of data. And if we are teaching students to be successful citizens in this data-intensive world, we need to be giving them the skills required to navigate this ever-growing ocean of data.

    With the Ocean Tracks project we focused on datasets that are Complex, Large, Interactively-accessed, and Professionally collected (or CLIP data):

    • Complex – includes different types of data, collected different ways
    • Large – there are more data than you need to answer any particular question
    • Interactive – you are able to explore the data interactively, comparing different sets of data via a variety of data visualizations
    • Professionally-collected – data were collected by “others” (not the student)

    Although we recognize that, in the world of "big data," there are datasets orders of magnitude larger than what we are using in Ocean Tracks, we think that these four characteristics provide a strong foundation from which to start building those skills required to work with "big data."

    The teachers we've worked with thus far have been recruited at various conferences and through some of the professional networks in which we've been involved. However, as we transition into this next phase of the project, we will definitely be exploring all of the kinds of options that you mention as ways of engaging new instructors into using Ocean Tracks with their students, as well as seeking and developing partnerships to help us succeed in this work!

  • Icon for: Nancy Shapiro

    Nancy Shapiro

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2017 | 08:55 a.m.

    CLIP--nice!  That's a new acronym for me, and I'll use it!  Meanwhile, I'm wondering if you have an advisory board or external council of experts who help you network?  the beauty of the data you are working with is that it can be used even by land-locked teachers and students anywhere!  Good luck on the next phase!

  • Icon for: Randy Kochevar

    Randy Kochevar

    Presenter
    May 18, 2017 | 02:46 a.m.

    Thanks so much, Nancy! We did have an excellent advisory board for the initial Ocean Tracks project, where we were focused specifically on interface development; and the Oceans of Data Institute has done ongoing work with panels of experts from many different disciplines. We are finding that, because the world of "big data" is evolving so rapidly, it is critical that we stay current in our own understanding of where the field is moving, so we can help provide students with the knowledge, skills and behaviors they'll need to be successful!

  • Further posting is closed as the showcase has ended.