This weekend (7th – 8th Feb) saw the first ‘Introduction to Oceanography’ course organised by Carol Robinson hosted by the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, and I think we can safely say it was a huge success! The course was designed for members of the public, particularly those with an interest in the oceans such as divers, and we had a great range of attendees from prospective students to avid kayakers. The course consisted of practical sessions sandwiched between lectures in the morning and afternoon each day. The topics ranged ‘from Plankton to fisheries’ by Simon Jennings from CEFAS , Antarctic oceanography and biology by Simon Morley from BAS , and scientific diving by Rodney Forster from the University of Hull. As well as our very own Carol Robinson, Tim Jickells, and Rob Hall covering the biological, chemical and physical aspects of oceanography.
The practical sessions were very hands-on and initiated brilliant discussion and questions. Again the topics covered spanned a huge range including ocean acidification/circulation, different measurement techniques such as the use of gliders, sensors, and the Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR) as well as a mix of bacteria/zoo/phyto/plankton ecology.
Following the success of this years ‘Introduction of Oceanography’ course, no doubt there will be further courses to follow, perhaps taking it to different locations, and maybe even going global… watch this space!