Earth and Planetary Science 24, Section 2

Oceans in the Media (1 unit, P/NP) SEATS AVAILABLE

Professor Jim Bishop
Thursday 2:00-3:30, 401 McCone Hall, Class number: 41221

Not one week goes by without major articles about oceans in print/online media such as The San Francisco Chronicle, New York Times, and LA Times. Oceans are a frequent topic of documentary videos. Coverage spans the gamut from the March 2011 earthquake near Japan, resulting in tsunami damage to a nuclear reactor, and subsequent radionuclide releases to the ocean which are still being tracked years later... to James Cameron diving to the deepest Ocean Trench in a novel submarine ... to the latest news on changing climate and Arctic sea ice melting / Antarctic ice shelf breakup... and the 2017 alphabet of hurricanes of destruction. Seminar participants will choose topic areas to be covered, find their own articles, and lead discussion. The aim is to identify and drill down to the sources of the material---in other words, to learn about effective communication and the validation of communication. Students will be graded on active participation and presentations.

Instructor Bio

Jim Bishop is a Professor of marine biogeochemistry in the Department of Earth and Planetary Science. His research focus is on understanding the role of ocean biology in the control of atmospheric carbon dioxide. He loves going to sea and has logged almost two years at sea during 46 oceanographic expeditions. He and his group design, build, and deploy autonomous ocean profiling robots which have already racked up eight years of continuous observations. For more information regarding Professor Bishop, visit his faculty web page. His August 2016 ocean expedition is covered at

Faculty web site:


The seminar is aimed at freshmen. We need the 1.5 block to enable short field trips - documentary videos.<br><br>Students will not be able to add this course after the first two weeks of the semester.