Teaching Hurricane Katrina

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  • 1. Teaching Hurricane Katrina Lois Ann Scheidt AOIR Conference Presentation October 8, 2005
  • 2. The genus of the idea
    • Overheard comments like the following said on campus:
      • “Well if they are stupid enough to stay then they desire what they get.”
      • “I’m just a student I can’t help I don’t have money.”
      • “Gosh I’m so glad I don’t live anywhere where anything like this could happen.”
  • 3. Tying the disaster into students lives
  • 4. New Madrid Fault
    • Last quake in 1811
    • Estimated intensity 7.5 or 8.0
    • Expected at any time
    • Damage zones likely to extend from Oklahoma to Indiana.
    • Estimates say that 2/3 of Memphis could be destroyed.
  • 5. In class activity Individual and then as a Group of the Whole
  • 6. What would you do?
    • Geologists have found a way to accurately predict earthquakes 24 hours in advance. (Don’t we wish.)
    • List a minimum of 5 things you would do before the predicted time of the local earthquake.
    • You have 5 minutes to make your list.
  • 7. What would that do?
    • Roughly 10% said they would not leave their homes.
      • Reasons included
        • “Unless my house is going to be destroyed specifically I’m staying.”
        • “The roads will be too busy so I’m staying home rather than being caught out in the open.”
        • “Earthquakes don’t last that long so why leave?”
  • 8. Those that said they would go
    • Realized very quickly, as our to-do list grew, that there was no way to get everything done before such a deadline.
    • If they did try to do everything on their lists they would be caught at home and unable to leave.
    • Better to just go and pickup the pieces afterward.
  • 9. As Informaticists What Responsibilities Do We Have in a Time of Disaster? How can we help?
  • 10. Specifically
    • Bio Informatics
    • Chemical Informatics
    • Health Informatics
      • Medical Professional
    • Human Computer Interaction
    • New Media
    • Social Informatics
    • Any others?
  • 11. Lab Assignment
    • Volunteer to assist Hurricane Katrina refugees and survivors.
    • OR
    • Review newspapers and news magazines (hardcopy or online) for three stories then write a short paper showing how your current or future informatics skills could help resolve the problems discussed in the articles.
  • 12. Lab results
    • 46 students in the class
    • 36 completed the lab assignment
      • 39% volunteered
      • 61% chose the paper option
        • Several commented that they had not thought about how they could use their skills to help others.
  • 13. Lois Ann Scheidt Email – [email_address] Blog – Professional-Lurker.com Presentation – available through a keyword search on Professional-Lurker.com