Data & Network Science in K-20 Education

Data & Network Science in K-20 Education @ BU aims to bring data, network, complexity and systems science literacy to a sustainable “K-20” STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) + Art education pipeline of innovators in research and education.

NetSci High & Network Science for All are related programs that immerse middle and high school students and teachers in the exploration of foundational STEM concepts to complex social, health and environmental issues through a network lens.

We work with our university and community partners to develop age-appropriate curricula and engage in after-school and in-school programs and workshops aimed at introducing students and teachers to network science foundations including graph theory, statistical inferencing, data mining, systems theory, and information visualization.

Our efforts empower students to develop computational skills for visualizing and analyzing data and to apply these skills to make sense of the world around them. Perhaps more importantly, we hope to motivate, inspire and cultivate creativity through team-building activities, mini-projects, integrating STEM with art and design, non-technical interactive talks by leading researchers, public speaking opportunities, and more. Our efforts aim to tear down the walls between student, teacher and researcher, positioning students to thrive in a supportive and caring environment, expanding their potential, and emerging with tools — and confidence — to embark on new STEM pathways including independent discovery.

[NetSciHigh] has opened doors for me that would not be open without the program. I have continued to work with computer science as well as network science. I am currently working with [grad student] to map out the recent Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Thank you once again and I hope to hear from you soon. – J.I., member of 2013/14 New York metro area team

These efforts are funded by the National Science Foundation through the Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers program (ITEST) (Awards 1949526 and 1949484). Previous funding from the National Science Foundation (Award # 1139478/1139482) and the Cyber-enabled Discovery and Innovation program (CDI) and the Office of International Science and Engineering (OISE) (Award # 1027752)