| "Fabulous! The NOAA staff were engaging and energetic. They had my class on the edge of their seats and eager to participate.
They had students up and moving around to complete hands on activities and play games to further their understanding of bioacoustics. They were very knowledgeable as well as savvy with classroom management. A great experience!"
"Why do we have to learn this?" is a common question in the classroom. Here at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center, scientists use the skills from the classroom in their analyses everyday.
Students listen and analyze different species' sounds. Photo credits: Shelley Dawicki, NEFSC (top); Alexandra Sterling, NEFSC (bottom)
NOEPS offers a 3 hour program for visiting high school students to learn about the leading field of bioacoustics and participate in an acoustic analysis project with marine mammal sounds. Led by one of NOAA's PSB acoustics researchers, students are able to learn about current science, and how what they're learning in the classroom is applied in the "real-world".
The first half of the program consists of a lesson on marine mammal acoustics: what makes underwater sound, how is it used, and why do we study it? After learning the key concepts, students apply what they've learned in the second half of the program. Students complete an acoustic project to compare and analyze sounds made by different marine mammals using Raven Lite sound analysis software to measure spectrograms and hypothesize how we can use acoustics to help manage threatened marine mammals.
This program is offered at the Woods Hole Science Aquarium in Woods Hole, MA. A center of marine research, it's a great community for a class field trip with plenty of additional activities available for exploration. Please contact us if you're interested in scheduling a high school class.
Acoustic analysis project steps. Credit: Acoustics Group, Protected Species Branch, NEFSC