OOI Data Explorations: A Collection of Online Data Visualization Activities to Engage Introductory Undergraduate Students
In 2016, a collection of prototype “Data Explorations” were created to explore how OOI data could be incorporated in lecture-based introductory courses as in-class activities. These explorations feature web-based interactive “widgets” that allow students to interact with pre-selected data from the OOI. Based on this initial work, the 2019 OOI Ocean Data Labs project brought together 56 university, college, and community college faculty to expand the collection with 19 additional explorations.
Each exploration was developed by a collaborative team of professors, an interactive data designer, and pedagogical consultants. In designing each educational interactive, faculty were first asked to identify the scientific concepts they wanted students to address. From this, faculty identified relevant and available datasets from the OOI collection, which were then downloaded and processed using Python notebooks. Customized interactive visualization tools that allow students to engage and explore the dataset, were then iteratively developed with the faculty team. Finally, appropriate contextual supports were added to the exploration to achieve the educational goal, including a challenge question, guiding questions, and background information.
All of the activities are available at https://datalab.marine.rutgers.edu/explorations/ for any interested faculty to use in their courses.