Class on December 13, 2018

Final presentations went quite well, especially given the time the students had after module 2 was extended.

One team presented a comparison of results from their NPZ-inspired model of a vent ecosystem to Narragansett Bay (though the units were not comparable).

Another team gave a jazzy presentation (using Prezi), describing vent ecosystems with video and explaining quite well what they had done and why — their model was however simplified by comparison with what another team did to model the base of a food web on Ghana's Ankobra river — they had started from a California estuary first and their major finding for the Ghana river was that turbiditiy was the most influential.

Despite only 12 data points for the year 2017, the Ankobra model was surprisingly pretty good.

The faculty then lead a discussion regarding what went well, what should be modified, and what could be omitted for future renditions of OCG 350. In a nutshell, students suggested they really enjoyed the class, learned a lot, but found that the assignments were very difficult within the alloted time. They suggested having the labs earlier in the semester (better weather), getting going earlier with assignments, spending more time coding in class.

They said the format was good for a class of no more than 15 students.

The students inquired about the next course in the PODS sequence (OCG 351), especially its content and the schedule. Some students suggested interest, but commented that during a very tough semester they might not be able to spend the kind of time that they devoted to OCG 350.

The faculty then thanked the students for going first in a PODS course that did not have the benefit of having been run with graduate students the first time through (as OCG 150 and OCG 250 had been — before being offered to undergraduates). The faculty suggested some benefit from learning the class format from previous PODS classes and a great benefit of having almost perfect overlap of faculty knowledge for the course's content.