The Digital Coast Strengthens Students’ Case Studies

The Takeaway: NOAA’s Sea Level Rise Viewer and other resources deepened student insights on the environmental and societal implications of climate change, and on potential adaptation strategies.

For two years running, undergraduate students taking Broward College’s Global Environmental Change course used NOAA’s Sea Level Rise Viewer and other Digital Coast resources to deepen their understanding of projected sea level rise and identify adaptation strategies for South Florida. The viewer’s slider bar enabled students to “see” zero to 10 feet of sea level rise and assess current and potential impacts to communities, including highly urbanized areas. Staff members from NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management presented an overview and demonstration of the viewer.

Social vulnerability information featured on the Digital Coast enhanced students’ insights on the broader societal impacts of rising seas. In addition, examination of U.S. Census Bureau maps revealed to some students the relative strengths and weaknesses of existing data sets.

At semester’s end, student case study presentations included recommendations and adaptation strategies. Peers and invited guests also discussed other potential adaptation options. (2021)

More Information: Assessing Sea Level Rise Impacts in an Environmental Science Class

Partners: Broward College, City of Boynton Beach, City of Hallandale Beach, Florida Atlantic University, NOAA’s Digital Coast