dates: JULY 22 - AUGUST 5, 2013
credit hours: 3 semester credits
total cost for CU/UNH students: $5,371 (includes room, board and tuition)
total cost for others: $6,235 (includes room, board and tuition)
Prerequisites: One semester of college level biology or equivalent, recognized SCUBA certification, and approval to SCUBA dive at Shoals Marine Laboratory.
Once accepted, students who are divers must apply for approval to SCUBA dive at SML. Please follow these links to apply for approval to SCUBA dive:
Shoals Marine Lab Handbook for Diving Safety – must be READ by all approved SCUBA divers!
stated, the primary goal of Underwater Research is to provide guidance
and opportunities for students to conduct original research underwater.
Although working underwater creates a unique set of conditions and
constraints, the essence of good research remains unchanged regardless
of location. Accordingly, a large portion of the course is devoted
to the concept of research, particularly as it applies to subtidal
marine ecology. During the first week, morning and evening lectures
cover the philosophy of research, hypothesis testing and experimental
design, theoretical and practical aspects of sampling, current ecological
research in the Gulf of Maine, and new techniques for underwater
research. Conducting research underwater additionally requires a
sound understanding of the many physiological limitations on the
underwater researcher, thus lectures during the first week also
cover advanced aspects of diving physics and physiology, theory
and use of diving tables, and hyperbaric medicine. Additionally,
students sharpen skills in critical and constructive thinking by
presenting during three evening discussion sessions, oral critiques
of several papers reporting current subtidal research. Afternoon
diving activities during the first week consist of an initial check-out
dive, three dives to collect data for class-wide laboratory exercises,
and one dive to identify organisms as part of an underwater exam.
*See below for information about becoming a Scientific Diver
All students have the opportunity to design and conduct original
research in the form of a detailed research "Proposal" on a subject
of their choice during the second week of the course. Students work
closely with the instructors to formulate research questions (based
on observations made during the first week and/or lectures) and
the appropriate sampling and experimental approach to answering
the questions. It is unrealistic to expect that sufficient data
for a research "Project" can be collected in one week, especially
when the project is conducted underwater. Consequently, the research
"Proposal" allows students to collect some preliminary data, as
well as to design sampling regimes and experiments that would be
done if sufficient time were available. Weather permitting, students
can plan on 11-14 dives during the second week for the collection
of preliminary data using a variety of research tools.
- Dr. James Coyer, Shoals Marine Laboratory, Cornell University
- Elizabeth Siddon, University of Alaska, Fairbanks
*Students may attain AAUS Scientific Diver status in the Shoals Marine Laboratory Dive Program upon completion of the Underwater Research course, which includes Dive Accident Management Training (O2 Administration, Basic First Aid, CPR). The Shoals Marine Laboratory is an Organizational Member of the American Association of Underwater Scientists, and Scientific Diver status conforms to AAUS standards. Pending successful completion of the course (including a minimum of 12 dives), students will receive a Letter of Reciprocity, which allows them to apply for permission to dive under the auspices of AAUS-sanctioned Scientific Diving Programs at universities, state and federal governmental agencies, and marine aquaria throughout the United States. Scientific Diver Status is retained as long as a minimal number of dives are completed each year and medical requirements are updated at regular intervals (see Section 8 of the Shoals Marine Laboratory Handbook for Diving Safety. Virtually all Scientific Dive Programs in the United States are AAUS Organizational Members and require participants to possess AAUS-sanctioned Scientific Diver Status.
Information about Divers Alert Network (DAN): http://www.diversalertnetwork.org/