Education Sessions at AGU Fall 2010 Meeting

NAGT is pleased to outline a variety of geoscience education sessions planned for the Fall 2010 AGU Meeting held in San Francisco, CA, from 13-17 December, 2010. Please submit an abstract and plan to attend the following sessions highlighting key issues of importance to geoscience educators at all levels. The deadline for submitting abstracts to the 2010 meeting is September 2, 2010.

Field Trips

Topical Sessions

ED02: Traditional Knowledge and Geoscience Research and Education

Pat Cooper, Ann Coopersmith, Ray Barnhardt

This session will explore strategies for incorporation of traditional knowledge into modern research and education. Traditional knowledge is the totality of experiential knowledge of the natural environment of a people, acquired over time, and comprising part of a people's cultural identity. Modern scientists and educators are beginning to recognize the value of multiple approaches to inquiry in the generation of new knowledge. Like modern scientists, indigenous peoples collect and analyze data. Traditional knowledge often provides contextual/baseline data that may be unavailable to the researcher. In a classroom, respect for and incorporation of traditional knowledge into science education makes it relevant to learners.

ED03: National and International Programs in Geosciences and Space Sciences Education

John Farrington, Michael Feder, Christos Michalopoulos, Stephanie Stockman

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education improvements have been recognized as important to fostering a better quality of life worldwide and at national levels. This session will highlight recent programs in geosciences and space sciences education and ongoing planning and reviews of such efforts. Integrative efforts in geosciences as well as efforts focused on individual subdisciplines, e.g. ocean sciences, atmospheric sciences, climate, space sciences, biogeosciences, are welcome. The focus will be on strategic planning, evaluation of outcomes, and reviews of programs by internal and external groups to highlight effective practices and recommendations for future efforts.

ED04: Public Participation in Geoscience Research: Engaging Citizen Scientists

Sandra Henderson, Annette Schloss

This session will focus on best practices and lessons learned from public engagement programs that promote greater understanding of geoscience content and processes through participation. Tens of thousands of individuals regularly contribute to a variety of research projects in the geosciences. Submissions that address citizen science planning, marketing, recruiting, retention, web site design, data entry, data quality control, coordination and management, communication between participants and researchers, and project evaluation are encouraged as are those that represent the diversity of participants including K-12 school groups, informal science centers, individuals, communities, universities, and laboratories.

ED05: Developing Geoscience Expertise: Bridging the Gap Between Master and Novice

David Mogk, Cathryn Manduca, Kim Kastens

A long apprenticeship is required to develop a professional geoscientist. In the classroom, laboratory, and field settings master geoscientists provide the context for training the next generation including: development of a knowledge base; historical perspectives; mastery of both general research/quantitative/writing skills, and more specific geotechnical skills; selection of appropriate tools; ways of knowing; modes of communication; metacognitive strategies; affective aspects and social norms; and ethics and value systems expected of the profession. This session will explore strategies and approaches that can be used to effectively initiate novices into the ranks of professional geoscientists. The session focus is undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate education; but middle or high school programs would also be welcome.

ED06: Using Real- and Near-Real-Time Data in the Classroom

Michael Poland, Katrien Kraft, Rachel Teasdale

Real- and near-real-time data related to Earth science have become increasingly available on the Internet. As an example, geophysical monitoring data, geologic maps, and daily reports regarding the activity of Kilauea Volcano are provided via the Web by the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. While these datasets are intended as a public outreach service, they can also be used to communicate the dynamic nature of Earth in a range of educational settings. This session will highlight the use of Internet-accessible data in the classroom, emphasize resources that provide real- or near-real-time data related to dynamic Earth processes, and highlight examples of successful practices with these data in the classroom.

ED07: BRIGHT STaRS: Bright Students Training as Research Scientists

Ines Cifuentes, Jennifer Saltzman

Science programs around San Francisco encourage talented high school students to discover Earth and Space Science in after school and summer programs that provide hands-on research opportunities. This invitation-only session highlights recent student research associated with such programs including the East Bay Academy for Young Scientists at U.C. Berkeley-Lawrence Hall of Science, the SF-ROCKS Program, a partnership between San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Unified School District, and the Earth Sciences High School Intern Program at Stanford University. High school students involved in summer research programs at other locations are encouraged to contact the conveners and submit their research projects.

ED08: The Imperative of Climate Literacy

Mark McCaffrey, Susan Buhr, Steven Ackerman, Tamara Ledley

One observer has described climate literacy in education as 'an imperative for survival,' but the challenges of addressing the complexity of the science, the emotional, cognitive and ideological barriers, and the cross-disciplinary nature of global change are daunting. Efforts such as Climate Literacy: The Essential Principles of Climate Science have begun to make headway in addressing these issues. This session focuses on innovative formal and informal climate education programs that address effective practices, education standards, misinformation and misconceptions, institutional and societal resistance, the integration of climate science and evidence-based solutions, and ways of bringing 'place-based' regional or thematic contexts to frame the science.

ED09: Enhanced Geoscience Learning Through Community Interaction

Edward Laine, Suzanne O'Connell

Service and community based learning projects can successfully engage students in the process of science at the same time as they have an impact upon their community. A broad variety of pedagogical approaches, pure service learning, problem-based service learning, action-based research, internships, and capstone courses fit within the context of service and community based learning. We invite faculty to submit examples of learning activities, projects, and courses, which allow students to focus their minds and efforts on addressing community issues and problems in the context of the learning goals of their courses. Of particular interest would be examples of problems overcome in course and activity design.

ED10: Climate Change Adaptation - Education and Communication

James Byrne, Daniel Fagre, Francesca Grifo, Andy Jarvis, Thomas Pedersen, Stephen Schneider

Strategies for climate change education and communication - there is a substantial communication gap between the global climate science community, educators and society. This session seeks to define and improve ways and means to broaden and enhance climate change communication and education for classrooms, and for all sectors of society.

ED11: New Resources, Approaches and Technologies for Teaching about Plate Margins

Jeffrey Ryan, Rosemary Hickey-Vargas, Donald Reed, Andrew Goodliffe, Cathryn Manduca

Students must understand the relationships among the tectonic, structural, petrologic and geochemical processes that occur at plate boundaries if they are to move from undergraduate geoscience courses into modern multidisciplinary geoscience research. This session seeks to highlight innovative resources and approaches to teaching plate boundary science, as have been produced in association with major research initiatives (MARGINS, Ridge2000, IODP, Earthscope), or as facilitated by new data and geospatial information resources (EarthChem, GeoMapApp/MGDS, Google Earth). Programs that move students from the classroom into plate margin research, at either the undergraduate or graduate level, are also of interest.

ED12: Learning and Understanding Complexity in the Geosciences

Catherine Gautier, Daniel Zalles

Complexity pervades the geosciences, be it in the climate system through the interactions and feedbacks occurring among the different spheres or in the various adaptive systems that are central to the biogeochemical cycles. It behooves educators to help students make sense of such complex systems and help them grasp their structures, functions, and behaviors through a variety of instructional strategies. We invite contributions from geoscience educators and researchers who are addressing how to teach and learn about Earth system complexity by identifying cognitive requirements, articulating conceptual frameworks, and communicating innovative instructional and assessment practices for the classroom, the lab, and the field.

ED13: Shedding Light on NSF Review Criterion Broader Impacts

Susan Buhr, Bruce MacFadden, Heather Pacheco

While acceptance of the NSF Broader Impacts Merit Review Criterion is improving, many in the research community find broader impacts challenging and a bit mysterious. Since NSB first approved Criterion 2, 13 years ago, excellent examples of highly impactful broader impacts activities have been funded. Current, new and future PIs will have increasing attention directed to broader impacts associated with their proposed research. This session invites contributions that demonstrate effective and creative endeavors, best practices and/or successful outcomes from all sectors of the broader impacts criterion to shed light on this requirement and facilitate collaborative efforts to strengthen the geophysical science communities.

ED14: Lessons Learned from IPY: Building Effective Education, Outreach, and Communication (EOC) Programs

Louise Huffman, Jenny Baeseman

Many IPY EOC projects grew into successful science communication models for projects that can be applied to any field. This session invites groups and individuals to share their best practices and the adaptations that will lead to continued and better communication with non-technical audiences from school children, to media and policy makers. This includes: How are networks built, nurtured and motivated? What are the most effective strategies to reach the next generation of scientists? How are you bringing diversity to research and education? What models for EOC have been successful and which have failed? What 'tips and tricks' can you offer other scientists for communicating science?

ED15: Teaching About the Deep Earth: Slabs, Drips, Plumes and More

Vincent Cronin, Michael Williams, David Mogk

This session expands upon a recent NAGT/NSF-sponsored workshop exploring current research about the deep Earth (lower crust, mantle and core), and working on how to bring these exciting results to the undergraduate classroom ( We seek a wide range of contributions related to our emerging understanding of the deep Earth gleaned through seismology, magnetotellurics, analysis of xenoliths, isotopic studies, experimental work, modeling, and interdisciplinary studies facilitated by EarthScope, IRIS, CIG, COMPRES, CIDER and other collaborative projects. How can we integrate this information effectively into a full spectrum of undergraduate geoscience courses?

ED16: How Do You Measure Broader Impact Success?

Chris Parsons, J. Theodore Repa, Patricia Kwon

Researchers applying for National Science Foundation funding must address this question: What are the broader impacts of the proposed activity? A quality broader impact statement includes a defined audience, validated need, plan with measurable objectives, an evaluation plan to measure success, and a budget. During this session scientists and evaluators will present the development and evaluation of broader impacts: how the audience and objectives were chosen, what the broader impact activity was, what the criteria for success were, how those criteria were measured, and how successful the broader impacts were (or weren't). We welcome proposals by scientists or evaluators, but especially encourage scientist-evaluator teams to submit to this session.

ED17: Teacher Professional Development Programs Promoting Authentic Scientific Research in the Classroom

Constance Walker, Gail Scowcroft, Stephen Pompea

The session will focus on research experiences for teachers, the roles of scientists and education specialists, and authentic scientific research in the classroom. Specifically, abstracts are requested from scientists, education specialists and teachers who have been directly involved with teacher-research experiences. Over the years, the programs and presenters that have contributed to this session benefited from the presentations and resulting collaborations. Presentations are invited from any of the scientific disciplines and from previous and new presenters. Scientist-teacher research teams are particularly encouraged. Printed materials and CDs supplied by presenters accompany the session.

ED18: Does Citizen-Science Equal Science Plus Public?

Constance Walker, Stephen Pompea, Pamela Gay, Bryan Mendez, Brian Day

Citizen-science programs are gaining in popularity and have the potential to benefit participants, extend scientific research, and improve public understanding of how science is done by engaging non-specialists in observations, measurements or classifications that further scientific activity. There is a range of involvement from passive to active and differences in how necessary citizen scientists are to the scientific goals of programs. Some programs deal with scientific questions that could not be investigated effectively without the aid of large numbers of volunteers. Abstracts may also include lessons learned from current citizen science projects in space, environmental, biological and geo-sciences, and a discussion of future directions.

ED19: Using Water Resource Issues to Engage and Educate

Martin Stute, Brian Mailloux

Multidisciplinary projects focused on water resource issues in the developed and developing world have generated a wealth of data. These include studies on arsenic in Asian groundwaters, pathogens in drinking water in Africa, water supplies in arid climates, etc. Using this data in courses engages students. More importantly, using this data in courses provides opportunities to link diverse fields such as climate, hydrogeology, geochemistry, health science and engineering and for students to learn about approaches in these diverse fields and how to find integrated solutions to complex problems. The goal of this session is to discuss how these case studies can be used in teaching resulting in shared resources and improved learning.

ED20: Improved Broader Impacts = Enhanced Scientific Impacts

Liesl Hotaling, Gail Scowcroft, Linda Duguay

Conveying scientific research to the public continues to increase in importance to scientists and society. Scientists are required to include broader impact activities to obtain or leverage funding, strengthen status within peer groups, and enhance professional development of graduate students. In addition, scientists are often intrinsically motivated to share their research with the world. This session will solicit examples of transferable and tractable activities, such as work with citizen scientists groups, diverse audiences, online resources and activities, the media, and formal and informal science education institutions. Contributions which focus on methods for gauging activity efficacy are of special interest.

ED21: Value of a Diverse Workplace

Ann Givan, Margaret Brewer-LaPorta, Ph.D., Christine Williams, Ph.D., Denise Cox

Men and women, young and seasoned professionals communicate and process information differently. The burden of communication falls on the most recent entries to the workforce. Rigid communication or management styles result in loss of creativity and talent from the workforce. Adapting to an increasingly diverse scientific workforce is essential in recruiting and retaining qualified and creative employees. The objective of this session is to explore the current status of our workforce diversity, maximize employee potential, impact of generations and gender, strategies to actively engage employees, communication and learning styles. Individuals from various disciplines are encouraged to submit abstracts.

ED22: The Future of Cyber-Education in the Geosciences: New Directions and Opportunities

Jeffrey Ryan, Susan Eriksson, Laura Guertin, Kerstin Lehnert

Rapid advances in user-friendly information technologies; growth in data resources born from earth and planetary science research; and associated rapid changes in the behavior and predilections of learners in formal and informal settings bring new challenges and opportunities to geoscience educators at every level. This session seeks to continue and expand upon discussions begun at the 'Planning for the Future of GeoCyberEducation' workshop in January of 2010 about effective cyberinformation tools and platforms, and about successful new strategies, synergies and collaborations aimed at bringing learning in the earth, oceanic, atmospheric and space sciences to wider audiences.

ED23: Encouraging, Attracting and Retaining Underrepresented Racial Minorities to Research Intensive Universities: Lessons Learned

Justin Brown, Adrienne Block

Almost, if not every, university in the United States recognizes the importance of increasing the number of underrepresented racial minority groups at the doctoral and professoriate level. America's research intensive universities foster some of the world's best earth and space science research and leadership. Their scholars are called upon to solve a diverse range of societal problems posed to our planet. Considering the demand and scope of these issues, this session seeks strategies to encourage, attract and retain underrepresented groups at America's most influential universities at both the doctoral and professoriate level.

ED24: Visualization of Geophysical Processes for Science, Education and Outreach

James Byrne, Peter Fox, James Graham

The complexity of many geophysical processes can be confounding to students, the public and many scientists. Visualization of geophysics processes can aid understanding and inspire much greater interest, and many cases, much greater motivation to support the science and address the issue. Many geophysicists develop complex databases that are (or may be) displayed effectively in 3D or 4D visualization software. Special video or photography techniques are utilized by geophysics professionals as well – notably atmospheric scientists. This session is connecting geophysical scientists with new media specialists to inventory informatics capacity and resources that may be effectively used in education.

ED25: NASA's Year of the Solar System -- Science Isn't Done Until it's Shared!

Daniella Scalice, Jaclyn Allen

NASA's Year of the Solar System (YSS) is a celebration of Solar System mission milestones that will begin in fall, 2010 and continue for one Martian year (687 Earth days), ending in late summer, 2012. The breadth of Solar System bodies and missions involved is extensive, including EPOXI, Stardust-NeXT, Dawn, MESSENGER, Juno, MSL, MER, GRAIL, and LADEE, and all the major questions uniting Solar System investigations are in play. YSS is a rare opportunity to enhance student learning about the Solar System, and engage the public in the exploration and excitement that is uniquely NASA. This session will bring together Education and Public Outreach projects and programs that are making a contribution to YSS.

ED26: It's Not Just a Moon, It's Our Moon!

Doris Daou, Jaclyn Allen

The past year has seen a plethora of new Lunar Education and Public Outreach programs and resources. From public outreach projects such as the 'International Observe the Moon Night' and 'MyMoon', citizen science projects such as 'MoonZoo', formal programs such as a suite of lunar teacher professional development workshops and the revitalized Lunar Sample Education Disk Program, and higher education resources such as 'Lunar GradCon', the lunar community has been providing education and outreach opportunities for a diverse group of audiences across various platforms. In this session we will showcase the latest lunar Education and Public Outreach creations and invite participants to join us in the hope of expanding the impact of lunar EPO.

ED27: Creating Professional Development Resources for Early-Career Geoscientists

Leila Gonzales, Syed Ajijur Rahman

This session focuses on the development of professional resources for early-career geoscientists. A significant challenge faced by the geoscience workforce is the low percentage of geoscience graduates that transition into the profession. With ~50% of the current workforce retiring within 15 years, there is a critical need to establish professional development resources that boost the flow of geoscience graduates into the profession and enable them to develop needed skills and experience to replace the cohort of retirees.

ED28: Experimental Studies on Communicating Climate Change Science

Bridget Thrasher, Andrew Freedman, Nicole Heller

A slew of polls show the percentage of Americans who believe human activities are responsible for recent climate change has declined markedly in the past few years. While some more recent polls demonstrate that this decline has not been as sharp as previously thought, they also show the public remains confused about the prevailing scientific view concerning the main causes of climate change. This session is intended to share insight into how to effectively communicate climate science to a non-scientific audience and seeks participants who are conducting experimental studies on climate science communication, including the effectiveness of various methods, messages, spokespeople, and media.

ED29: History of the Geosciences

Gregory Good

An open session which invites presentations on any aspect of the history of the geosciences, ranging from the interaction between geology and geophysics to unraveling the history of the Neogene and Quaternary. This session is sponsored by the AGU History of Geophysics Committee.

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