HP Catalyst Showcase on Innovation: The Multiversity and Global Collaboratory

Dates: 
17 January 2012 - 9:00am - 10:00am

Join us for this free, live webinar on January 17 at 7 am Pacific / 9 am Central in our virtual room, and RSVP here.

Learn how Catalyst consortia are scaling innovation and helping to spread new ways of learning and teaching.

FEATURED PROJECTS: 

"Thinking Global, Acting Local: Engaging Learners in Geospatial Technology Projects through the HP Collaboratory" by GeoTech Center Partnership, Del Mar College
Professors at Del Mar College in Corpus Christi, Texas, believe that implementing solutions that educate and improve communities begins in the classroom. The Global Geospatial STEM+ project arms students and teachers with the services and technical expertise to research local problems and engage in solutions that not only alleviate those problems, but also impact global issues.

One of the initial projects involves tracking immunization rates and their national impact. By utilizing innovative HP lab equipment, Hispanic students at Genesis Academy in Phoenix, Arizona and Moody High School Innovation Academy in Corpus Christi, Texas can almost instantly generate US maps and key in data layers that reflect immunization rates down to the county level. The emerging patterns in the maps illustrate to healthcare institutions the reasons why parents are electing not to immunize their children. If they can better understand the psychological and socioeconomic forces that comprise people’s decisions, then healthcare institutions can formulate innovative strategies that make immunizations more accessible and desired by every household.

With the GeoTech Center at Del Mar College as the hub, providing support and remote desktop access, the mapping itself requires minimal teacher guidance. Students delve deeper than the numbers as they actually see the effect of immunization rates on specific demographics through the maps they created. Acquiring such hands-on technical and analytical skills at a high school level opens up a series of doors for economically challenged students; the experience not only builds skills required for university study, but has clear and relevant application to the workplace as well.

"The Challenge of Water Quality: China and United States‚ Sister Schools, Seek Solutions Together" by Scofield Magnet Middle School and Shandong University Middle School
Water pollution is an enormous challenge, anyone would agree, but is it something middle schoolers could possibly help with? Most people may see this as too complex for anyone but lab-coated scientists and environmentalists, but students at Scofield Magnet Middle School in Stamford, Connecticut are now actively involved in real-world analysis of groundwater. Working with a variety of community organizations and utilizing HP technology, classes track data about quality of water, topography, drainage, flora and fauna, as well as the impact of urban development.

Scofield students are learning first-hand how development in their community impacts local waterways, reading local newspapers depicting the contamination issue, and meeting with environmental reporters to discuss investigative journalism. By working with Shandong University Middle School, Scofield hopes to cast an international spotlight on the rapidly growing issue of poor water quality. The nearby Huangshui River Basin, the focus of the Shandong project, is recognized as one of the most polluted river systems in China. The project is putting students on both continents side by side with scientists and other experts in the field, giving them the chance to practice skills and techniques relevant to science and environmentally related careers.

The classes have already begun testing pH, salinity, dissolved oxygen, fecal coliform, turbidity, water flow, water depth and temperature, using GPS, HP Mobile Calculating Lab probes, HP calculators, notebook computers, and GIS software to document their findings.

"Implementing Virtual Laboratories and Online Learning for STEM+ Education" by Fisk University
Fisk University plans to introduce online teaching technologies, including virtual labs, web-based computer simulations, webinars, audio and video lectures into Chemistry, Mathematics, and Computer Science courses. They plan to collaborate with other HP Catalyst Multiversity Consortium members, including Northwestern University, Western Washington University, National University and Renmin University (China) to share online teaching experiences and resources. HP tablets, web cameras, servers and other equipment will be used to achieve the proposed objectives.

"Remote Access to Scientific Instrumentation and Online Labs for STEM Education: Building Laboratory Parity throughout the Curriculum" by Western Washington University
The quality of STEM education is often dependent on access to laboratory instruments and other critical learning tools. Western Washington University, in Bellingham, Washington, has equipment that neighboring Whatcom Community College and Squalicum High School do not, yet all three schools offer a similar college credit course that looks at water quality. The Building Laboratory Parity project will bridge this educational divide in Bellingham by building upon Western’s open source, web-based Integrated Laboratory Network (ILN) — an online laboratory with remote instruments. The goal is for students who have limited or no contact with professional lab equipment to gain those critical experiences through the ILN’s virtual laboratory.

While Western utilizes special equipment in its version of the course to obtain real-world results, Whatcom and Squalicum up to now have had to rely purely on traditional means. With the ILN, all three schools will be able to collaborate so that all their students can participate in the analysis of relevant real world data. The project will initially focus on an experiment where students at Whatcom and Squalicum will prepare lab samples, deliver those samples to Western, and, in turn, Western will load the samples into robotic samplers that allow students to remotely control the instruments and analyze the results using Tablet PCs.

As the project progresses, science teachers will be able to receive certification for specialized online lab instruction which itself will be offered online. Western is currently working with a variety of institutions to develop a Remote Educational Consortium (REALC) to design, disseminate, and evaluate all the practices associated with using online labs, with the hopes that it will encourage replication of the approach in other communities, or even as a way to bring these resources to schools on the other side of the globe.

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