Pilot Goals
Summer 2001

Overall Goals

 The overall goal of GlobalHeartbeat is to develop an innovative, multidisciplinary marine education program for high school and undergraduate college students to build awareness of issues related to health of the urban ocean and living organisms. We aim to build strong student-scientist partnerships of schools, marine institutions and the Sea Grant network. This program will include hands-on, inquiry based laboratory experiments, curriculum guides and materials, and an extensive use of the World Wide Web for sharing of information, data presentation and analysis, and dialogues between scientists and students. It will build on, and adapt for classrooms, a well-respected ecotoxicological research technique, in which the recording and analysis of crabs' heartbeats will be used as indicators of ocean health.

Long-term Goals

The GlobalHeartbeat program provides an additional component to support the USC Sea Grant's focus on the "Urban Ocean".  The program will provide a basis for a strong student-science partnership, which will enable students to build an increased awareness of what is happening environmentally in urban oceans and how the consequence of that can affect the health of living organisms in coastal communities.

In CA, large urban areas located along the coast are especially affected by pollution. It is important for students and the general public to be aware of the environmental and human health effects that result from  chemical and physical pollution in their own local area.  Studying CA coastal pollution in our first year of the program will provide a model that can be used for educational awareness at a more global level as the program evolves.

By taking established scientific procedures and making them more readily available, cost-effective, usable, and understandable for the education arena, the GlobalHeartbeat program will help increase understanding of how marine organisms can serve as biomarkers/early indicators of pollution. The program will provide an integrating context for teaching and learning about these topics within a multidisciplinary curriculum, encompassing science, math, health, social studies, civics, geography and writing courses.

The GlobalHeartbeat program will facilitate the environmental health science community by providing additional data collection points for the study of the links between ocean and human health.  Students will benefit from gaining experience in the use of authentic research tasks and will make real contributions to a scientific body of knowledge as they assist scientists in gathering this additional data (similar to GLOBE).

An on-line store of scientifically reliable data and information will be developed. This will be regularly updated and presented in an understandable and visual manner on the GlobalHeartbeat web site for use by both the education and scientific communities.  Ultimately the program will help meet the critical need for providing the general public with the conceptual tools required when making informed environmental health science issues.

The GlobalHeartbeat web site (http://www.globalheartbeat.org) will provide a platform for on-line discussion forums and workshops where students, educators and scientists can interact and share relevant materials and resources.  This online community will promote formal and informal educators' involvement in these topics by sharing activities and ideas among various centers of learning and the Sea Grant network. It will also provide the opportunity to build science-school partnerships.

Year 1 Objectives:

1.Establish partnerships between Sea Grant and participating schools , marine institutions, and other educational organizations.

 2. Provide training to the instructor on the use of the monitoring equipment.

3. Deliver program to the selected undergraduate group.

4. Develop an informational web site for the program together with an online medium for the posting and sharing of project related data.

5. Establish an online seminar as a way for scientists to interact with the students and to enable the transfer and sharing of knowledge as gained during the program.

6. Evaluate the university program.

Year 2 Objectives:

1. Adapt method for ease of use at a high school level; create curriculum materials and teacher guides for use in the classroom.

 2. Train selected high school teacher group and deliver program orientation.

3. Deliver the program in the selected high school pilot sites.

4. Expand the web site and continue online seminar.

 5. Evaluate the high school program and plan for expansion to additional sites.

6. Present the results


The  College of Exploration, 230 Markwood Drive, Potomac Falls, VA 20165
Tel: (1) 703 433 5760      Email: peter@coexploration.net