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Outreach and Educational Activities
The BSL is involved in a variety of outreach activities,
ranging from lectures and lab tours to educational displays and
the development of classroom materials for K-12 teachers.
We maintain an earthquake information tape (510-642-2160)
and an extensive set of Web pages, providing basic earthquake
and seismic hazard information for northern and
The BSL has several on-going outreach programs, such as the educational
displays, WWW development, and the Earthquake Research Affiliates
As part of the BSL's outreach activities, we have made REDI earthquake
data available to a number of universities, colleges, and museums as
educational displays. As noted above, this year marked the expansion of
this program to the K-12 environment. Participating organizations receive
a REDI pager and the Qpager software to display the earthquake information.
The Qpager program maps the previous seven days of seismicity, with
earthquake shown as a dot. The size of the dot indicates the magnitude of
the event, while the color of the dot indicates its age. These
educational displays have been installed at UC Berkeley (McCone Hall,
Earthquake Engineering Research Center, LHS),
California Academy of Sciences,
College of the Redwoods,
Fresno City College,
Humboldt State University,
San Diego State University,
Sonoma State University,
Stanford University (Blume Engineering Center, Department of Geophysics),
UC Santa Cruz,
UC San Diego,
In a pilot project initiated two years ago, the San Francisco Unified School Dis
been given two pager systems for use in middle school classrooms.
In addition to the seismicity displays, the BSL provides local waveform
feeds for helicorders at several visitor centers associated with BDSN
stations (CMB and MHC). Organizations such as LHS, KRON,
and KPIX receive feeds from BKS via dedicated phone lines for display,
while the USGS Menlo Park uses data from CMB for display in the lobby
of the seismology building. The BSL has also loaned a seismometer and
helicorder display to the San Leandro Unified School District for
their use in science classes.
Over the last year, we have continued to expand our presence on the
WWW. Our primary goal has been to provide a source of earthquake
information for the public, although we also provide information about
the networks, such as station profiles, which benefits the research
community as well. We provide such information as seminar schedules,
course advertisements, descriptions of operations and research,
updates on recent earthquake activity, details on Bay Area
seismicity and hazards, and links to other earthquake and earth science
servers. We also use the WWW server for our own information
distribution, with such details as the computing and
operational resources, rosters, and schedules for various purposes.
The UC Berkeley Earthquake Research Affiliates (ERA) Program is an
outreach project of the BSL, the Department of Geology and
Geophysics, and the Earthquake Engineering Research Center. The
purpose is to promote the support of earthquake research while
involving corporations and governmental agencies in academic
investigation and education activities such as conferences and
field trips. The ERA program provides an interface between
the academic investigation and practical application of earthquake
During 2001-2002, the ISTAT (Integrating Science, Teaching, and Technology)
Project drew to a close. This collaboration, part of the the
Interactive University Project (IUP), brought the BSL,
the Museum of Paleontology, the Space Sciences Laboratory,
and the Center for Particle Astrophysics together in an
earth and space science cluster, with a focus on education in
"Integrating Science, Teaching, and Technology" (ISTAT) with a focus
grades 6-12. We received a small 18 month grant
in 1996 to initiate this project. Based on our success, we
submitted a second proposal in 1998 and received funding for
a 3 year project with Gloria Davis Middle School, Horace Mann
Academic Middle School, Galileo High School, Mission High School,
and Thurgood Marshall Academic High School in the San Francisco
Unified School District (http://www.UCMP.Berkeley.EDU/IU/).
During this project, we worked with lead teachers to
review the new San Francisco science and math standards and to
identify "gaps" between existing resources and materials and
the required content. San Francisco has recently adopted new
textbooks with the goal of teaching Earth and Space Sciences in
the 9th grade. We worked with the teachers to develop a
working outline for the curriculum and to supplement the text
with activities and resources.
The draft Earth science curriculum now includes a scope and sequence,
course outlines for 6, 9, and 12 week modules, and preliminary assessment
materials and is available on the Web at
In the fall of 2001, Dr. Gee joined scientists from UCMP,
San Francisco State University, San Jose State University, and
the Cal Academy of Sciences to design an earth science course for
middle school teachers. The course was composed of 5 workshops
and Dr. Gee presented material on earthquakes.
BSL staff have also spent considerable time with public relations
activities during the past year. Several tours are given each month,
with audiences ranging from middle-school students to scientists and
engineers from China and Japan. This year, we saw a sizeable increase
in visits from "home-school" students.
The BSL hosted several special groups during 2001-2002. A number
of educational groups visited, including a class from Mills College
a groupd of California city managers attending a conference sponsored
by the Goldman School of Public Policy.
In addition to the tours, Drs. Romanowicz, Dreger, Uhrhammer, and
Gee presented talks on earthquakes and related phenomena to public
groups. Dr. Gee gave a presentation for the City of Berkeley,
directed at the volunteers participating in the Disaster Resistent
The BSL was unable to participate in Cal Day this year, due to
a scheduling conflict with the annual meeting of the Seismological Society
of America. The BSL did participate in
"Take Your Child to Work Day" and hosted many UC Berkeley parents and
their children. The visitors learned about UC Berkeley's role in
earthquake monitoring, found out how many earthquakes occurred on
their birthday, played with an "earthquake machine", made P and S-waves,
learned about earthquake preparedness, and were given sample seismograms.
The BSL co-hosted a workshop with Jack Boatwright of the USGS to discuss
coordination of seismic instrumentation in Northern California, the
generation and distribution of ShakeMaps, and the evolution of ANSS in
The workshop included representatives from the BSL, the USGS Menlo Park,
the California Geological Survey, the California Office of Emergency
Services, and PG&E.
In less than 4 years, the Bay Area will celebrate the centennial of the
1906 earthquake. In June, 2002, the BSL hosted a meeting of representatives
from the USGS and the Seismological Society of America (SSA) to begin
planning for this historic anniversary. The BSL and the USGS have
agreed to co-host the 2006 Annual Meeting of the SSA and discussed several
ideas for organizing the meeting with Executive Director Susan Newman.
In addition to plans for the scientific meeting, the BSL is collaborating
with other campus units on commemorative activities.
Lind Gee oversees the outreach activities at the BSL. Barbara
Romanowicz, Bob Uhrhammer, Rick McKenzie, and many other
faculty, staff, and students at the BSL contribute to the
outreach activities. Lisa Krain helps with the upkeep and
development of new web pages. Lind Gee contributed to the
preparation of this chapter.
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