Ocean 180 Video Challenge Announces Finalists - 01.15.2014

Scientists are constantly exploring, conducting exciting and groundbreaking research that addresses many of world’s greatest challenges. Yet, often the importance and implications of their discoveries are never shared with the public.

Recognizing the need for scientists to communicate more effectively with the general public, the inaugural Ocean 180 Video Challenge asked ocean scientists to explain their research to middle school students. Sound easy? How about in 180 seconds or less?

Sponsored by the Florida Center for Ocean Science Education Excellence (COSEE Florida) and funded through a grant from the National Science Foundation, the Ocean 180 Video Challenge was designed to inspire scientists to communicate the meaning and significance of scientific research with a broader audience.

Scientists from across the country took on the challenge, sharing their recently published research in 3 minute videos. The top 10 submissions were selected by a panel of science and communication experts. Now the finalists will be evaluated by middle school students, arguably one of the most critical audiences.

Over 42,000 students in 6-8th grade from all 50 US states and 13 countries will ultimately select the winners. Of the 480 teachers who have registered their classrooms as student judges, many are looking for a way to inspire students to view science as a potential career, not just a subject in school.

Throughout January, over 1,800 middle school classrooms will be screening the videos and evaluating the communication skills of ocean scientists. These students are responsible for not only selecting the winners, but providing feedback and comments to the scientist. The opinions of the student judging team are taken very seriously, with winners of the Ocean 180 Video Challenge receiving up to $6,000 in cash prizes.

While registered middle school classrooms are participating as judges, the videos are available to the public. Visit for a full list of team members, participating classrooms, and to view the finalists’ videos. Winners will be announced in late February.

Questions regarding the Ocean 180 Video Challenge may be directed to

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