Learn about our ecosystems with ASU

Ecology Explorers gives Phoenix area K-12 teachers and students opportunities to learn through real scientific research.

You can help research our Phoenix ecosystem and be part of the Central Arizona - Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research (CAP LTER) project being carried out by scientists. The scientific data you collect can be shared with other researchers and schools to see what patterns in nature exist across our Phoenix metropolitan area!

Ecology Explorers education outreach

Phoenix area teachers and students can take part in real scientific research led by CAP LTER scientists. Our education outreach programs focus primarily on urban ecology and urban sustainability.

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Teacher Explorers
We can help you teach ecology in our local area

Ecology Explorers can help you with workshops, lesson plans, and resources for grades K-12. For more information on how ecological research can fit into AZ state standards, visit our teacher section.

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Student Explorers
Study our local ecology like a real scientist

K-12 students can learn how to explore and study just like real scientists. Your research can be part of ecological projects being carried out by CAP LTER scientists.

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Education Outreach Partner Programs

Service at Salado

Overview of Service at Salado

Service at Salado engages elementary and middle school students and ASU undergraduates in after-school clubs that learn about and contribute to the City of Phoenix Rio Salado Habitat Restoration Area. It is a partnership between ASU programs, CAP LTER and several community partners.

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Southwest Center for Education and the Natural Environment (SCENE)

Overview of SCENE

SCENE was founded to promote learning about our environment through scientific discovery. SCENE's mission is to provide Arizona citizens with a scientific basis for making informed decisions about the environment. SCENE links science expertise and resources at Arizona State University with the community at large, and with schoolchildren and their teachers. The organization is a partnership among the ASU Global Institute of Sustainability, municipalities and members of the private sector.

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Ecoplexity: Teaching Ecosystem Complexity Through Field Research

Overview of Ecoplexity

This project helps develop a heightened capacity for systems thinking among high school life science teachers and environmental education providers. We have created tools to assist them in their teaching about complexity through the use of field experimentation, reading scientific literature, conceptual modeling, and simulations. Several LTER sites are cooperating on this project.

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Decision Center for a Desert City (DCDC)

Overview of DCDC

This Center studies the decision processes used to plan and manage water resources and urbanization. The education and outreach components of this project include several items which have been completed and we are currently developing teaching material at the high school and community college level for DCDC products

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Mediterranean Landscape Dynamics Project

Overview of Mediterranean Landscape Dynamics Project

This project examines long-term socioecological processes that shaped Mediterranean landscapes from the beginning of farming to the beginning of complex civilization. The education component will focus on sustainability in the past and the future.

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Information Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST)

Education for an Equitable Future

The Mary Lou Fulton College of Education, in collaboration with faculty, industry and community partners, is engaged in a three-year (2007-10) National Science Foundation (NSF) funded project to encourage female and underrepresented students to learn about engineering through a variety of extracurricular activities. Students from Carson, Powell, Mesa, and Smith Junior High Schools in Mesa Public Schools will participate in inquiry-based learning through hands-on engineering projects designed to increase their interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

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