PhD Defense: Julie Robinson

The Bren School of Environmental Science & Management
at the University of California, Santa Barbara


A PhD Defense

Julie Robinson
Bren School PhD Candidate

Friday, Dec. 10
3:00 - 3:45 pm
Bren Hall 3526 (Pine Room)

"A Multi-Source Evaluation Model for the Pilot of DigitalOcean: Sampling the Sea

— Preliminary Results and Lessons Learned"


Faculty advisors:

Oran Young, Bren School

Ronald Rice, Department of Communication



Human actions threaten the sustainability of vital ocean resources. As a result, researchers and practitioners of environmental science are pointing to the broad and urgent need to create a more “ocean literate society.” In a pilot project, DigitalOcean: Sampling the Sea, ocean science and social media were integrated in an online curriculum about sustainable seafood for high school students. A unique multi-source model was developed to test two hypotheses related to students’ ocean literacy learning outcomes. Additionally, a process evaluation examined the transdisciplinary research project from the perspective of achieving the proposed eight goals outlined by the developers.

This research was funded through a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Innovation Grant and the Carsey-Wolf Center at UCSB.



Julie Robinson is a research scientist cross-trained in environmental science and communication. Her research interests include the design, implementation, and evaluation of communication strategies as capacity-building tools to support environmental problem-solving. Julie also produces science documentaries for PBS and National Geographic and has co-authored an award-winning book about America's National Marine Sanctuaries.