POSE-NE Community Conference
Saturday, March 4th 2006

POSE Update

Join us at Oceans '06!


POSE Conference Earns High Marks

From Both Researchers and Educators

by Kim M. Frashure

The first annual COSEE-NE community conference, Partnerships in Ocean Science Education (POSE) New England, was held on Saturday, March 4th 2006 at the UMass Boston Campus Center overlooking beautiful Boston Harbor.   The conference brought together COSEE-NE program alumni as well as new participants in order to promote ocean science literacy; to continue building a broad network; and to forge new cooperative efforts between ocean scientists and educators.  

The 75 participants came from throughout the New England region, and were welcomed by Billy Spitzer, COSEE-NE PI and V.P. of Programs and Exhibits at the New England Aquarium.  Billy provided an overview of National COSEE and highlighted the successes of COSEE-NE.  John Farrington, V. P. for Academic Programs and Dean at WHOI, delivered the keynote address. John spoke about the history and necessity of scientists connecting with educators, and the importance of a common voice regarding ocean science literacy initiatives. 

Next, participants attended concurrent sessions based on the ocean science literacy initiatives developed by the National Geographic Society, NOAA, COSEE, and NMEA. Each session featured a presentation by an ocean scientist highlighting their current research relative to a particular ocean science literacy strand; a hands-on activity delivered by an educator; and a group discussion led by a facilitator, who led the audience in making relative connections between ocean science, curricular frameworks, and their own work.  After the concurrent sessions, Kathleen Radley, UMass Boston, led participants through a debriefing exercise.  Among the suggestions from participants: additional time to attend all of the sessions, and researchers would like to see a POSE conference offered  three times each year focusing on research “hot spots.”

The conference concluded with a share-a-thon and social event, during which participants were invited to showcase their work in ocean science research and education and outreach. This was an opportunity for both researchers and educators to learn about the available products that are the outcome of scientist/educator collaborations; to become more familiar with current ocean science research and ocean related curriculum materials; and to learn more about COSEE-NE.

A survey taken during the conference showed that scientists attended POSE in order to meet and network with educators, and were interested in obtaining ideas about education and outreach opportunities.  Similarly, educators attended the POSE conference to meet and network with scientists, and they also wanted to learn more about current ocean science research.  Researchers found the educational activities most useful and valuable, while educators found the ocean science research talks, along with the integration of research and education, the most valuable experiences.  Educators also recognized the importance of ocean science literacy principles.  According to an exit evaluation, the majority of participants met someone at POSE that they plan to involve in their work in the future, and requested a contact list for all conference attendees to assist with follow-up efforts.

The COSEE-NE PIs who attended all agreed that there was a positive energy to the day, and that the connections modeled between researchers and educators were strong, important and useful.  All acknowledged the need for future events similar to POSE in order to foster collaborations. Based on the success of POSE, it is very likely that a second annual POSE Conference will be held – so stay tuned!     




List of Presenters and Conference Objectives

The Ocean Makes the Earth Habitable, Ru Morrison, University of New Hampshire

Presenter Biographies and Contact Information

 Presenter Biographies and Contact Information (PDF)

Contact Information (Excel)