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Graduate Student/Faculty Collaborative Workshops
Category: For Graduate Students, For Scientists
Resource Type: Link
Date Posted: 03/04/2010
Concept map created at the COSEE-OS Graduate Student/Faculty Collaborative workshop

In the past year, COSEE-OS has run a series of model workshops that bring together teams of researchers and educators in order to synergistically improve communication of complex science topics using concept mapping and web-based tools. On January 29, 2010, at the University of Maine’s Darling Marine Center, a new pilot workshop was launched that challenged scientists and graduate students (as well as a few postdoctoral researchers) to open new lines of communication at the academic level.

Working in small groups of four people each, five teams of ‘scientists-in-training’ (SIT) paired with a veteran scientist (VS) worked together to construct meaningful concept maps focused on their research topics, and were collectively asked to target an audience of undergraduate non-science majors. Each person had a contribution to make: The SIT were tasked with providing the VS with the "bridging perspective" to the undergraduate population, while the VS in turn had a chance to explain and clarify their deep knowledge of complex science topics (e.g., climate change dynamics, ecosystem modeling, carbon sequestration) on a peer-to-peer level with the SIT. On the final day of the workshop, the SIT showcased their "consensus" concept maps to Waterville High School students, who critiqued their presentations and provided thoughtful feedback on their work.

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