Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Science & Environmental Policy


nformal education programs exist as a learning resource for the general public. These programs must continually be evaluated to ensure that objectives are being met and that they are designed to best serve the target audience. Visitor feedback is essential in determining what, if any improvements need to be made, especially when an existing program undergoes revisions. At the Joseph M. Long Marine Laboratory at the University of California, Santa Cruz, the education department is undergoing an expansion through a new education/interpretive center, the Marine Discovery Center. One particular education program, "Window to Discovery" for grades K-12 is being revised to best meet the needs of the visiting students. Surveys were developed and distributed to all visiting teachers for the months of March and April. The survey covered four main topics that included logistical information, class topics, quality and quantity of science instruction, and program costs. Responses from surveys indicate that the viewing of live marine mammals during the student's visit is very important and teachers want to have a site tour followed by a classroom program. Teachers responded that the three best times to have the school programs begin were 9:00, 10:00, and 11:00 a.m. Responses from teachers indicated that there is great interest in the existing class topics, but would also like to see additional topics offered as well. Overall it was found that students are receiving low levels of science instruction in their classrooms. Some marine topics are covered in their science instruction and for the most part, the California state science framework, and the national science education standards are incorporated in their instruction.


Capstone Project (B.S.) Earth Systems Science & Policy Institute

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