Educational Philosophy

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What we must do is encourage a sea change in attitude, one that acknowledges that we are part of the living world, not apart from it.

–Dr. Sylvia Earle, Sea Change

Ocean Matters classes are hands-on and interactive, a ‘heads-under’ approach (as one student described it) where your studies center around daily dives on the reef. You will not be required to regurgitate information, but rather synthesize what you’re learning and form your own questions from observations you’ve made in the field, then design methods to answer those questions.

rajithaDuring the program, we will explore your own individual goals, as well as craft some group goals together. Some of our own goals include for you to:

  • explore a career in marine sciences
  • develop the tools of inquiry-based research science
  • apply peer-reviewed research science to an ecosystem
  • develop a working knowledge of the scientific method
  • identify reef flora and fauna to species level
  • understand and apply complex theories of reef biology and ecology
  • learn how to write a scientific paper
  • learn about marine science research methodology
  • learn to work together effectively as a group
  • present your research to scientists and the media
  • explore and design possible solutions to complex marine conservation problems
  • become an informed eco-citizen and bring those skills and knowledge to whatever field you choose.

book_thumbnailThe program opened my eyes to many things, but most of all, to nature. I gained a new appreciation for the earth as a whole. I realized more fully how diverse and precious it is.

— Isabel, an Ocean Matters student

Ocean Matters Executive Director Laura Parker Roerden has written about the program and its impact on young people’s social, emotional, and ethical development in Schools with Spirit, “Lessons of the Wild.”

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