World’s Foremost Digital Learning Adventure Goes Live From Alaska
EDS (NYSE: EDS) is preparing to take more than a million students from all corners of the globe on a virtual field trip to the frozen Alaskan ice pack.
Using the latest digital learning technologies, EDS will help fourth through ninth graders in North America, Europe and Asia take part in a collaborative, online learning adventure during the 13th annual JASON Project expedition in Alaska, Jan. 28 – Feb. 8.
Led by Titanic discoverer Dr. Robert Ballard, JASON XIII Frozen Worlds focuses on the world’s polar regions. Ballard’s team, joined by 30 student Argonauts, will use distance learning to interactively connect students in their classrooms to the team’s explorations of the earth’s dynamic systems.
“We are studying the effects of cold temperatures on all forms of life and the methods scientists use to study these systems,” Dr. Ballard said. “JASON XIII allows students in Singapore, Mexico and Italy to experience Arctic exploration first hand.”
EDS’ Technology Solutions
The JASON Project showcases digital learning solutions similar to those EDS provides to organizations, enabling the delivery of consistent training to a globally dispersed audience.
“We develop thousands of hours of custom courses for organizations around the globe, including such clients as 7-Eleven and the United States Navy and Marine Corps. Now, EDS is bringing these same capabilities to school-aged students worldwide,” said Brad Rucker, executive director of EDS bluesphere, an interactive Web solutions organization. “We bring bottom-line value to businesses, but with the JASON Project, we enhance the bottom line in education … getting kids excited about learning!”
The EDS-developed course, GPS and GIS: Tools for Modern Explorers, helps students learn how computer technology, satellites and research combine to create unique ways of examining geography. During the course, students learn about Global Positioning System (GPS) and Geographic Information System (GIS) technologies.
“This new online, interactive course encourages students to explore GPS and GIS
— two areas that are used for everything from providing street directions,
locating the exact spot of a cell phone call to recovering a stolen vehicle. It’s our map of the future, only better, and we’re giving this new generation of explorers the skills to use it,” said Rucker. To see a demo of the course, visit www.eds.com/jason .
EDS’ alliance partner DigitalThink provided the e-learning platform that powers the JASON XIII online course. “After six years of working with Global 2000 companies developing e-learning solutions, we are delighted to see our technologies being used to educate young students and get them excited about science,” said Jon Madonna, president and CEO of Digital Think.
Through EDS’ multiple Internet components, streaming video and other multimedia tools and services, students and educators will study the expedition-specific JASON XIII curriculum and observe the results of scientific experiments and observations made by scientists and 30 student Argonauts who are on-site in Alaska from Jan. 28 – Feb. 8.
EDS will deliver live, daily broadcasts from the expedition site in Alaska via www.eds.com . EDS’ video-streaming capability gives participants the same perspective as student explorers, enabling scientific observation as events unfold. EDS has been providing video streaming to the JASON Project since 1995. To watch a Webcast of the JASON XIII expedition, go to www.eds.com/jason anytime from Jan. 28 – Feb. 8.
Complementing its other technology components for JASON XIII, EDS developed multiple Quick Time Virtual Reality environments that enable students and other Internet users to see a 360-degree “you-are-there” view of a permafrost tunnel in Alaska. The virtual tour allows students to explore animals and plants that existed in freezing climates thousands of years ago and learn about the various ice formations that allow today’s scientists to study past life forms. To take the tour, go to www.eds.com/jason .
The Argonauts are hard working, talented students and teachers selected each year by The JASON Foundation to join the expedition team and travel with the scientists. This year, Dane Kmetz of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and the son of EDS employee Dee Kmetz, will join Dr. Ballard in Alaska.
“I’m excited about going to Alaska, taking part in the cold climate studies. It’s giving me the chance to be an explorer and a scientist. And getting to work with Dr. Ballard is great, too. EDS and the JASON Project are making it fun to learn about the world, and that’s why I applied to go,” said Kmetz.
EDS — A Founding Sponsor
EDS is the founding sponsor providing Internet solutions for the JASON Project, begun in 1989 by Dr. Robert Ballard. JASON supports EDS’ top community priority
— education — by sparking students’ interest in science and technology.
“EDS helped launch the JASON Project more than a decade ago because it was a perfect match for us. As an advocate of science and technology education at the impressionable elementary and middle-school levels, EDS considers this type of distance learning critical to expanding the reach of science and technology-related curriculum,” said Tom Mattia, vice president of EDS Global Communications. “The technology we provide enhances student performance and enables them to experience the vast capabilities of the Internet. At the same time, EDS can help ensure that future generations have the knowledge and skills they need to keep moving technology forward.”
About 1,000 EDS volunteers and expert sources worldwide also are actively involved in the program.
About the Expedition
The JASON Project is internationally renowned for its ability to incorporate cutting-edge technologies, a multidisciplinary curriculum, professional training for teachers and Internet communications into one comprehensive learning program. About a million students and teachers from Mexico, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Sweden, Germany and Bermuda will view the live broadcast. The Internet will enable millions more to share the excitement of the project.
The project is designed to interest students in science and technology careers and help teachers improve their instruction in grades four through nine. Each year, a small group of students is chosen to participate in JASON explorations, where they work with scientists at the expedition site.
This year, students will learn about some of the coldest regions on earth. Following an educational curriculum, Team JASON Online members will investigate everything from changing landforms to melting ice. Students will learn about the ingenious ways that indigenous plants and animals have adapted to subfreezing temperatures. Members of Team JASON Online will also have access to the EDS-developed online course that explores today’s sophisticated methods for examining our geography.
EDS, the leading global services company, provides strategy, implementation and hosting for clients managing the business and technology complexities of the digital economy. EDS brings together the world’s best technologies to address critical client business imperatives. It helps clients eliminate boundaries, collaborate in new ways, establish their customers’ trust and continuously seek improvement. EDS, with its management consulting subsidiary, A.T. Kearney, serves the world’s leading companies and governments in 58 countries. EDS reported revenues of $19.2 billion in 2000. The company’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.
For more information about EDS and the JASON Project, see http://www.eds.com/jason. For general information about the JASON Project, go to http://jasonproject.org/ and see Media Center. For a JASON XIII video preview, go to http://www.eds.com/jason/jxiii–broadcasts.shtml and see Prologue Video.
Kristin Dobrowolski – EDS