Big data is changing industries—including health care, journalism, science, and manufacturing—at breakneck speed, and these rapid changes are challenging the U.S. education system to keep pace. How can we make sure that students have the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed in an increasingly data-driven world?
EDC’s Oceans of Data Institute (ODI) is committed to ensuring all students gain data literacy skills and know how to use data to make informed decisions. ODI is transforming K–16 education by supporting educators in integrating data literacy instruction into all school subjects. The institute is also working with community colleges, big data industry experts, and career and technical educators to create pathways to data careers.
ODI collaborates with scientists, engineers, educators, and business people to do the following:
- Develop and test educational materials that foster data literacy, including EDC Earth Science (nationally distributed curriculum), Real World, Real Science, Zoom In! Learning Science with Data, and Ocean Tracks (interactive online learning environments)
- Conduct research to advance knowledge of effective strategies to promote data literacy (e.g., Building Insights Through Observation, Streams of Data)
- Convene innovators and thought leaders to help shape ODI’s work (e.g., Building Global Interest in Data Literacy: A Dialogue: Workshop Report) and Expanding Access to Data Science Careers panel series)
- Provide guidance to scientists and designers in creating tools for students and citizens (e.g., Visualizing Oceans of Data: Educational Interface Design)
- Lead projects and publish resources—including Profile of a Big-Data-Enabled Specialist, a Guide for Data Worker Internships, and Tools for Building a Big Data Career Path—to support workforce preparation
- Work with high schools and community colleges to create data courses and programs that are relevant to their local economy
- Since it was launched, Ocean Tracks has had over 120,000 users from across the globe. During the COVID-19 pandemic (looking at data from March 2020 to 2021), Ocean Tracks had more than 60,000 users.
- The Data Pathways Community of Practice has 43 members from 29 different colleges and community colleges that are in the process of building data courses and programs.
- Over 10,000 visitors have accessed ODI’s Resources for Educators Using Data in the Classroom.
- Tools for Building a Big Data Career Path has been downloaded 500 times.
American Geoscience Institute, Bunker Hill Community College, California Coast Community College District, California Polytechnic State University, The Concord Consortium, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, IBM, Mount Washington Observatory, National Geographic, Normandale Community College, Nurture Nature Center, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Sinclair Community College, Stanford University, University of California, San Diego, University of Maine-Orono, University of Washington-Seattle