There are two critical barriers to the advancement of public understanding of science. First, there is a need for more K-12 teaching resources and professional development designed to help teachers demonstrate scientific research practices and teach critical thinking skills. Second, while the best source of authentic, current, and topical research is scientists themselves, research scientists are not often trained to communicate their science to a broad audience.
A 2015 Science Transfer project at the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia addressed these challenges by creating the Virginia Scientists and Educators Alliance (VA SEA), a network that supported the transfer of graduate student science to K-12 educators in Virginia. This factsheet describes the project approach, benefits, products, and next steps.