National Ocean Sciences Bowl

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

A woman showing a hologram of the earth and ocean.

National Ocean Sciences Bowl

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl is a national competition for high schools that is held on issues that are relevant to the study of oceans. This competition is organized and run by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, together with its member universities.

In recognition of the fact that 1998 was the International Year of the Ocean, the NOSB was first held throughout the winter and spring of that year. In the following paragraphs, we will learn more about the National Ocean Sciences Bowl and the way in which it encourages students to develop an understanding of the ocean.

Let’s meet National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB)

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) is an academic competition and program that aims to address a national deficit in environmental and earth sciences in public education.

It does this by introducing and engaging high school students in ocean science, preparing them for careers related to ocean science and other STEM fields, and helping them become knowledgeable citizens and environmental stewards. The NOSB was created to address this gap.

Students receive a more comprehensive education in STEM fields as a result of their participation in the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB), both in terms of their preparation for the competition and their actual participation in it.

Two women talking while sitting near a table.

They are also exposed to and prepared for careers within ocean science or STEM, which, in turn, supports the application of better solutions, the identification of needs and gaps, and the meeting of new technological requirements throughout their high school careers, as well as their college careers, and their professional careers.

When used in the fields of science, education, technology, and mathematics (STEM), the ocean serves as an excellent example of an ideal interdisciplinary teaching tool that places academic pursuits into the context of the actual world.

Working in the ocean environment presents a number of obstacles that stimulate the necessary levels of creativity, engineering, and technological growth among staff members.

However, ocean science is not often taught at the secondary school level in the United States. When students are just starting to figure out what they want to do with their lives, the NOSB is one of the few places they may get an introduction to the wide range of vocations linked to ocean research.

What are the mission and goals of NOSB?

What is the mission of the National Ocean Science Bowl, and what are its goals? The mission of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) is to improve the quality of science education provided throughout the United States by means of a high-visibility national competition designed to expand the oceanic knowledge of high school students and to improve public understanding of the importance of ocean stewardship.

In the meanwhile, the following are the four goals of NOSB:

  • Develop informed ocean stewards who recognize the value of scientific research and the influence of the ocean on daily life.
  • Encourage the inclusion of ocean sciences in the curriculum and the use of the ocean as an interdisciplinary vehicle for teaching science and mathematics.
  • Encourage and encourage underrepresented and geographically diverse populations’ participation in ocean sciences; and
  • Provide students with interactive education that fosters critical thinking and workforce skills while also exposing them to ocean science experts and career options.

What is the competition process in NOSB?

What are the procedures involved in NOSB’s competition process? The National Ocean Sciences Bowl is a timed tournament for high school teams that includes critical thinking questions and “rapid memory recall” replies using a “lock-out” responder system.

The biology, physics, geology, and chemistry of the seas, as well as related geography, technology, history, policy, and current events, are all covered in the questions. Teams of students play in a regional tournament (bowl) format to determine whose team can properly answer the most questions in each match.

Professor teaching someone using a laptop.

Teams advance to the elimination stages by winning their round-robin or preliminary matches. The best team from each regional tournament advances to the National Finals.

While the competition is at the heart of the program and serves as the foundation for science learning, other program-related initiatives include hands-on and experiential field and award trips for students, professional development for teachers, and opportunities for students to connect with ocean science professionals on a personal level.

Students must submit an in-depth research document on a specific ocean-related subject or problem for the research project, as well as provide an oral presentation on their findings. A panel of scientists evaluates each component.

The competition necessitates a multidisciplinary team effort, the capacity to integrate and prioritize enormous amounts of frequently contradictory information, and the ability to coherently explain the research’s findings and advantages.

Regional and Final Competitions

The rules and regulations of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl, as well as the particular questions that are used in the regional and national contests, are prepared by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership with the support of the Technical Advisory Panel.

In the preliminary stages of the tournament, a round-robin format will be utilized, and in the later stages, a double-elimination format will be utilized.

Regional Coordinators and Volunteers

The institutional members of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership are taken into consideration when choosing the regional locations for the regional bowl contests. At each location, a member of the team serves as the primary coordinator for their respective region.

Staff members from the Consortium for Ocean Leadership provide training to the regional coordinators on how to effectively plan and run the regional competition. Volunteers are responsible for the staffing and operation of each regional bowl as well as the finals (e.g., faculty members, students, administrative staff, etc.).

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl relies on the joint efforts of hundreds of volunteer staff members during the regional contests and the finals in order to achieve its desired level of success. The staff of the Regional and National Consortium for Ocean Leadership is responsible for training and preparing these volunteers for the essential responsibilities that they will play in the organization.

These volunteers play a variety of roles during the competition, including moderators, scientific judges, rules judges, timekeepers, and scorekeepers.

It is the responsibility of each regional bowl coordinator to raise funds locally to cover expenses such as the printing and reproduction of the program, the provision of meals and snacks for the program’s competitors, and the provision of trophies or other similar awards for the regional bowl’s champion teams.

Who are the sponsors of NOSB?

Who are the organizations that support NOSB? The NOSB is a joint project of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership and the NOSB host universities.

The NOSB is generously sponsored by government agencies, companies, foundations, and other non-governmental organizations in the United States.

What are the participating high schools in NOSB?

Which high schools in the area are a participant in the NOSB initiative? The institutions that are part of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership that are conducting a regional competition designate the geographical area that will be a part of their competition and invite schools that are located in those regions.

Schools that take part in the regional bowl are responsible for covering their own costs associated with the regional competition.

Criteria at National Ocean Sciences Bowl

The competition includes three sorts of questions: toss-up (multiple choice), bonus (short answer), and Team Challenge Questions (worksheets). Teams are scored depending on how many right toss-ups and bonus questions individual players answer throughout each match.

Teams can also earn points by completing Team Challenge Questions jointly, which may entail evaluating data, graphs, or plots. The NOSB website contains specific grading standards based on the sorts of questions.

The Science Expert Briefing is a scored component (both written and oral) of the national Finals competition (SEB). The SEB is a simulated congressional briefing in which teams are given a piece of ocean-related legislation to work on.

Members of the team must identify the community, economic, and scientific impacts of the specific legislation, as well as current data gaps and potential needs in research, development, and capacity, from the perspective of one of the five stakeholder groups: federal agency, state agency, academia, non-governmental organization, and industry.

Who serves as the adviser of NOSB?

Who sits on the NOSB’s advisory panel, and what do they do? The advisory panel of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl is aptly called The Technical Advisory Panel. The purpose of the Technical Advisory Panel is to give general direction and assistance about the development of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl.

The panel is made up of around 15 ocean scientists, educators at the university level, and high school instructors. In particular, the panel is responsible for providing technical oversight over the production of competition questions.

A male and female student standing in the middle of the hallway, talking to each other while the female student is looking through the notebook that the male student is holding

The tournaments each have around three thousand questions prepared for them. In both the regional and the national championships, the questions are arranged such that they get progressively more challenging as they progress.

Is there a resource guide for competing teams in NOSB?

Is there a NOSB reference guide for competing teams? The national NOSB website includes a study resource guide, example questions, and other valuable material.

The resource guide directs interested students and instructors to important information and tools on ocean research and related issues. The actual questions for the regional and final contests are derived from this reference material, at least in part.

The creation of this guide was necessitated because most high school science courses do not include ocean research as a component of their curriculum; students will frequently study weather formation, global climate issues, marine mammals, and earth sciences, but not the oceans as the primary drivers of global climate and weather.

Students working on something while in the classroom.

Furthermore, broad ocean sciences (physical and chemical oceanography, for example) and specialized ocean phenomena (currents, heat transport processes, for example) are rarely researched.

The resource guide offers references to a variety of significant sources of ocean knowledge, including textbooks, CD-ROMs, and chosen Web sites. The Technical Advisory Panel examined this handbook, which was created by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership/NMEA employees.

What are the prizes at stake in NOSB?

What are the prizes up for grabs in the National Ocean Sciences Bowl? The prizes that were awarded to those who placed at the national competition have undergone some minor adjustments from year to year.

As a reference, the following awards were bestowed upon the winners of the bowl’s 2005 edition:

1st Place Prize 

Trip to Hawaii (Sponsored by the Hilton Waikoloa Village)

2nd Place Prize 

Trip to Bermuda (Sponsored by the Bermuda Biological Station for Research)

3rd Place Prize 

Trip to Catalina Island (Sponsored by UC-Davis)

4th Place Prize 

Trip to the Great Lakes (Sponsored by the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory)

5th-8th Place Prizes 

Gift Certificates for scholarly resources and textbooks pertaining to marine science

Does NOSB award scholarships?

Is there a scholarship program at the National Ocean Sciences Bowl? NOSB students who are interested in pursuing an ocean- or marine-related topic in college are eligible for the National Ocean Scholar Program, which is supported by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership.

This program was established with the intention of recognizing individual achievement as part of the NOSB program.

Students sitting on the bench while doing school work.

The first two years of a scholar’s undergraduate education will be fully funded by the sponsoring organization. On the website of the national NOSB, prospective students may find information on the scholarship program, such as eligibility requirements, the application process, and a downloadable application form in PDF format.

What is the theme of the 2022 National Ocean Sciences Bowl?

What is the overarching concept for the National Ocean Sciences Bowl in 2022? “Climate Change: Ocean Science and Solutions” is the topic of the 2022 National Ocean Sciences Bowl.

Millions of people throughout the world are already feeling the effects of climate change, which is increasing the frequency and intensity of droughts, flooding, wildfires, storms, and other natural disasters. The immediate consequences are obvious: the devastation of individual houses and entire towns reduced access to healthcare, loss of life, and the financial cost of reaction and recovery.

However, there are long-term consequences to consider, such as changes in terrestrial, marine, and freshwater ecosystems that affect their resilience or capacity to rebound after being disrupted by such events, threatening long-term implications on ecological processes and services on which humans rely.

The financial consequences of weather-related calamities continue to climb year after year. The expense of weather-related calamities rises year after year as the climate changes. As of October 8, 2021, the United States has undergone 18 weather/climate crisis occurrences, each with damages in excess of $1 billion. Droughts, flooding, wildfires, hurricanes, and winter storms were among them.

Climate change evidence is clear – and expanding. The average global temperature of our world is increasing. This shift is directly related to human activities that increase the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (e.g., carbon dioxide and methane).

Obviously, the ranking of years may alter with time; nonetheless, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reports that 2020 will be the second-warmest year on record (knocking 2019 down to number three). Since 2014, seven of the world’s hottest years have happened; the ten warmest years have occurred since 2005.

Changes are also taking place in the seas. The ocean’s basic chemistry is changing faster than ever before. As the ocean absorbs more carbon dioxide and heat from the atmosphere, the water heats, expands, and becomes more acidic and deoxygenated.

These temperature and chemical changes impact marine habitats and the species that live inside them. They also melt terrestrial ice sheets and glaciers, which, unlike their aquatic equivalents (ice shelves and sea ice), generate increasing sea levels and increase the danger of erosion and storm surge for coastal towns.

Simply said, the ocean, which covers more than 70% of the Earth’s surface and transfers heat from the equator to the poles, can no longer serve as a massive buffering mechanism controlling global climate.

Humans have brought much too much carbon dioxide into the system, and the effects are now being felt. Unfortunately, when new and cumulative effects on the complex ocean and coastal ecosystems emerge, some repercussions remain unknown.

As the need for action rises, it is critical that future leaders grasp the linked processes that influence Earth’s climate at global and regional dimensions, the effects of climate change, and the opportunities and methods for adaptation or mitigation. It is with the fervent hope that working researchers will be added, all thanks to the National Ocean Sciences Bowl so that there will be more experts who can continually assess the influence of climate change in extreme weather occurrences and look for trends and solutions.

Investments in remote and in-situ ocean observing and monitoring infrastructure are critical for better understanding the ocean-climate system, forecasting future negative impacts, and providing information that assists communities in adapting and supporting the development of new ocean-based solutions.

AdmissionSight is willing to help

It’s great that the National Ocean Sciences Bowl is putting so much effort into spreading knowledge about ocean research to the general public. A thriving ocean provides essential oxygen, materials, and employment opportunities for humans.

The next generation of leaders must understand the importance of understanding ocean concerns. High school students can better grasp issues of global climate and weather, ecosystem health, sustainability, and resource conservation if they have a firm grasp of ocean science.

When discussing the importance of staying well-informed, it’s advisable to actively seek counsel from professionals specializing in college admissions. For instance, consulting experts like the team at AdmissionSight can significantly enhance your likelihood of securing acceptance.

AdmissionSight has become the most trusted name in the field of college admissions advice as a result of its more than a decade of expertise assisting students just like you in gaining admission to the colleges of their first and second preferences.

Please get in touch with us as soon as possible so that we can schedule an initial consultation that will be provided free of charge.


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