Data Skills

The Desire To Use Data

The Oceans of Data Institute has put considerable energy into understanding what it means to be data literate in the age of “big data”. We, of course, are not the only ones interested in this as awareness of the shifting landscape grows. An internet search we did recently revealed attempts by organizations around the world to describe data literacy with definitions that vary in length from a short sentence to more than 200 words.

Ocean Tracks: College Edition Modules

These modules were developed to engage undergraduate students with authentic scientific data through investigations that mirror those currently being conducted by scientists studying the broad-scale effects of climate and human activities on top predators in ocean ecosystems. Using the Ocean Tracks interactive map and data analysis tools, students will explore and quantify patterns in the migratory tracks of marine animals in the northern Pacific Ocean and relate these behaviors to fluctuations and trends in physical oceanographic variables.

Looking Back and Moving Full STEAM Ahead

The work of a teacher rarely ceases once the doors of the school finally close for summer vacation. Just a few short days after the school year had ended, I had the opportunity to head back to my old high school stomping grounds and reconnect with many of the teachers who were, and in some cases continue to be, my most influential mentors, helping to shape me as a learner and as a person. But this time, instead of turning to former teachers for wisdom, I was suddenly being treated as the “expert” in the room.

“It’s all about critical thinking”

...this is a phrase I’ve heard repeatedly from expert big data analysts since we first launched the Oceans of Data Institute in 2013. Indeed, in ODI’s 2014 survey of close to 100 big data analysts, analytical thinking and critical thinking emerged at the top of the list of skills and knowledge essential to working with big-data across a broad spectrum of disciplines.

What are our motivations for teaching with data?

These presentation slides were presented at the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) Teaching with Data Workshop on May 20-22, 2016.

Big Data Down on the Farm

Big data has become a big buzzword. For many though, this term remains very much a black box, its real world applications shrouded in ambiguity. For some, big data can often carry some negative connotations: they think of secret government agencies, tracking their every move. They think of large corporations following their every click, peering deep into the souls of consumers to predict their buying habits and preferences. But big data isn’t reserved only for the likes of Google, the NSA, and companies on the Fortune 500.

Getting Agile in the Classroom

This past week I had the pleasure of traveling out to Oregon wine country to visit Dayton High School. While Dayton may be a small rural town, big changes were taking place in the classroom. The school is experimenting with a new type of learning model, dubbed Agile Learning, to spark a culture of creative problem solving and collaboration throughout its halls.

Implementing a Module from Ocean Tracks College Edition in My High School Marine Biology Class

After using the Ocean Tracks modules from the high school curriculum for the past few years in my marine biology course, I was excited to try out some of the newly developed (draft) curriculum modules that had been designed as part of Ocean Tracks College Edition (OTCE). In this blog entry, I want to describe the steps I took to implement the Ocean Tracks College Edition module, “What’s UP with the California Coast?” in my high school classroom.

Sharing What We've Learned Through Ocean Tracks

I first learned of the Oceans of Data Institute because they had a great idea.


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