Big data has become a big buzzword. For many though, this term remains very much a black box, its real world applications shrouded in ambiguity. For some, big data can often carry some negative connotations: they think of secret government agencies, tracking their every move. They think of large corporations following their every click, peering deep into the souls of consumers to predict their buying habits and preferences. But big data isn’t reserved only for the likes of Google, the NSA,...Read more
“The data shows that my hypothesis was wrong.”
Oh no. What happened? My high school students were working on the Ocean Tracks College Edition draft module, “What’s UP with the California Coast?” and this was one of my group’s final claim. They had been confronted by a few data points that didn’t fit their initial prediction of where and when they thought Bluefin tuna would be found and now they were ready to throw out their hypothesis. In this blog entry, I want to...Read more
This past week I had the pleasure of traveling out to Oregon wine country to visit Dayton High School. While Dayton may be a small rural town, big changes were taking place in the classroom. The school is experimenting with a new type of learning model, dubbed Agile Learning, to spark a culture of creative problem solving and collaboration throughout its halls.
Agile Learning finds its roots in the agile project management strategy popular in the world of software development. So what...Read more
After using the Ocean Tracks modules from the high school curriculum for the past few years in my marine biology course, I was excited to try out some of the newly developed (draft) curriculum modules that had been designed as part of Ocean Tracks College Edition (OTCE). In this blog entry, I want to describe the steps I took to implement the Ocean Tracks College Edition module, “...Read more
I first learned of the Oceans of Data Institute because they had a great idea.
ODI had just finished a massive body of work, trying to learn how best to use visualizations in classrooms to get students to work effectively with data. They had read hundreds of journal articles and spoken with dozens of experts in all aspects of learning. They compiled all of their knowledge into a report, called...Read more
With the recent release of its fourth season, the political drama, “House of Cards” was, and continues to be, a huge success for the online video-streaming tycoon, Netflix. “House of Cards” has garnished critical acclaim: its first season, released in 2013, was nominated for 13 Primetime Emmy Awards and 4 Golden Globe Awards, the first Web-only show to ever receive any such nominations. The popular ratings website, IMDb, scored “House of Cards” a 9.0 out of 10, placing it in the upper...Read more
Why Analytical Thinking?
In 2014, ODI gathered an expert panel of professionals that work with big data. After 2 days of intense discussion, this expert panel developed a list of the knowledge and skills essential to working with big data. Their work was then validated by almost 100 peers who work as big data analysts. As you can see below, Analytical Thinking ranked highest in both the knowledge AND skills essential to being an effective big data-enabled specialist....Read more
“This week in class, you are going to be doing ‘college level’ work.” My high school students in my marine biology course stared back at me with their eyes wide, but I didn’t hear the groans that I was expecting. Instead, did I detect some excitement that the bar would be raised?
I had made the decision to try something new with the students in my high school marine biology class at Souhegan High School in Amherst, New Hampshire. Over the last four years, I have used the Ocean...Read more
For many, the term “Big Data” remains very much a black box. How it is collected, managed, and then analyzed for practical use is still largely an unknown. To help unpack the mysteries of this buzzword, big data, it is beneficial to explore the ways it impacts our day-to-day lives: whether it be the ways in which we engage with content online to how it impacts our daily commute.
According to a recent report from the Texas Transportation Institute the typical American loses an average...Read more
“Data drives discovery, decision-making, and innovation. … However, our current education systems have not been equipped to produce either the workforce or the citizenry with the skills, knowledge and judgment to make wise use of the data streams that our technologies are delivering.” – A Call for Action for Promote Data Literacy Workshop for Building Global Data Literacy, October 2015
The statement above, crafted and signed by a...Read more