UCTV’s Education Channel offers expertise, inspiration for a lifetime of learning

Whether you’re a preteen exploring robotics, a high schooler filling out college applications, a parent struggling with distance learning or a teacher looking for videos to engage your students, UCTV’s Education Channel has something for you. In fact, the new channel offers high-quality resources for learners of all ages.

“The Education Channel as it stands today attends to the needs of a diverse global audience, providing engaging, leading-edge educational programming across the lifespan,” said Morgan Appel, assistant dean of UC San Diego Extension’s Education and Community Outreach (ECO) Department, which supports the channel’s programming.

The Education Channel evolved from UCTV’s STE+aM Channel, which focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math. The new channel incorporates STEAM-related content but covers a much broader range of education-related topics and serves a wider audience.

“The Education Channel can perhaps be best characterized as the next logical step in our work in television,” Appel explained. “This transition was in the works but was given a sense of urgency and accelerated as a result of the onset of the pandemic.”

Content for the channel draws on an impressive pool of experts, including faculty from UC San Diego and across the University of California System, as well as Extension instructors. Contributors also include community partners, such as schools and nonprofit groups, and recognized authorities in education, public policy and more. Most programming is underwritten by ECO; the Girard Foundation and other organizations also provide support.

Here are a few examples of resources you’ll find on the Education Channel:

  • Staying Sane: Tips for Parents in Unprecedented Times – This video series from educators Shelli Kurth and Nicole Assisi offers advice, encouragement and inspiration for families struggling with distance learning. Topics range from “Reading with Your Kids” to “Your Self Care Toolkit.”
  • College Admissions – Extension instructor Steven Mercer hosts a series of videos to help with the college planning and application process, ranging from “College Tuition Costs” to “The UC Application and Admission Process During COVD-19.”
  • College Transition – A series of videos from the Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP) at UC San Diego shares tips for the transition to college. Subjects include “You Got into College! Now What?” and “Navigating College as a First-Gen Student.”

The Education Channel is available on the UCTV website and on a variety of other platforms, including YouTube, Amazon and Roku. Videos are categorized for ease of access. Companion guides are available for some topics, such as remote learning during the pandemic.

Appel emphasized that ECO strives to provide educational resources in a wide array of formats. “Our work in television is part of a more comprehensive approach to instructional delivery that includes courses and workshops, companion guides, podcasts, and video in English and Spanish,” he noted.

The Education Channel is helping ECO reach the broadest possible audience, Appel added: “We serve pre-kindergarten to post-retirement with programming designed to meet viewers where they are – be that creating a home-learning environment for elementary students, applying to college in uncertain times, exploring careers in education, or gaining insight into the state of education and workforce development in the 21st century.”

Browse all programs available on the Education Channel.

By Margaret King

Exploring The Human-Ape Paradox

CARTA’s Fall 2020 symposium, Comparative Anthropogeny: Exploring the Human Ape-Paradox, examines humans as a uniquely evolved, “biologically enculturated,” species as juxtaposed with our closest living relatives, the “great apes” (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, and orangutans). By definition, each species is unique as it represents the outcome of independent evolution. Yet, humans appear to be a remarkable outlier as we have numerous characteristics so far un-described in any other primate. Why should this be? Unlike other species, the evident animal nature of humans is interwoven with a distinctly human cultural fabric, forming the paradox of “biological enculturation”: a species that is both “biologically cultural” and “culturally biological.” In humans, “biological enculturation” is so pervasive that disentangling the cultural and biological components is impossible.

This symposium brings together experts in various disciplines from around the globe to address several important distinctly human “biologically enculturated” characteristics, both in relation to each other and in contrast to our evolutionary cousins. They explore transdisciplinary interactions and generate new, potentially unexplored, insights into uniquely-human specializations.

Given the interest in understanding our evolution, this symposium also helps organize how and in what sequence distinctly human physical, mental, social, and cultural features evolved. Such understanding may help explain the origin of our species and how it came to now directly shape the planet, giving rise to the Anthropocene, the epoch of human influence on climate and the environment.

Browse more programs in CARTA – Comparative Anthropogeny – Exploring The Human-Ape Paradox.

Scientific and Social Activism

Please join us for an intimate discussion with eminent microbiologist and geneticist Jon Beckwith of Harvard Medical School. Beckwith is the author of Making Genes, Making Waves: A Social Activist in Science. He discusses the history of scientific and social activism and the teaching of social issues in biology.

Along with having a successful scientific career, Jon Beckwith has been one of the scientific community’s most influential champions of social justice and civil liberties. He has openly supported the Black Panther Movement and was among the first in his field to warn the world about the danger of genetic engineering. He has over 50 publications dealing with issues such as discrimination and misuse of behavior genetics. He was a member of the Working Group on Ethical, Legal and Social Implications committee of the Human Genome Project and was an important organizer of the international organization, Science for the People. Since 1983, he has taught a course on Social Issues in Biology at Harvard University, one of the first courses of its kind.

Watch A Deep Conversation with Jon Beckwith: A History of Scientific and Social Activism and the Teaching of Social Issues in Biology.

Bending the Curve: Climate Change Solutions

Climate change is an urgent problem that affects everything from human health and food security to immigration patterns and water resources.

With unchecked emissions of climate pollutants, there is a 50% probability for the planetary warming to cross the so-called dangerous threshold of 20C by 2050; and there is at least a 5% probability the warming can exceed a catastrophic 60C in about 80+ years.

Climate scientists study more than Earth’s changing climate. They are an integral part of coming up with solutions for both mitigating and adapting to these human-caused changes. Join world renowned scientist Ram Ramanathan for insight into a multifaceted education program, Bending the Curve, which inspires action on climate solutions. The groundbreaking program is offered at all University of California campuses and internationally. Learn how he and colleagues around the world are educating students at every level to become climate warriors.

Watch Bending the Curve: Climate Change Solutions.

The Erosion of Democratic Values and Practice

Many observers believe we need to grapple with challenges arising from the many well-established laws, regulations and policies which have been ignored or violated over the past four years.

Janet Napolitano, UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy faculty member and former UC President and former Secretary for Homeland Security, is in conversation with Leon Panetta, former Secretary of Defense, former Director of the CIA, former White House Chief of Staff, former Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and former U.S. Representative from California; L. Song Richardson, Dean of the University of California, Irvine School of Law; and Eric Swalwell, U.S. Representative for California’s 15th congressional district.

These experts tackle the impact on American society and democracy and voice concerns that the nation may have to grapple with a challenging period before it can begin to implement reforms to strengthen the system.

They explore the possibility of a transfer of power and the need to shore up democratic institutions to make our democracy stronger and better.

They each have ideas on a practical, yet ambitious, roadmap for reform focused on combatting the erosion of democratic values and practices in Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court and law enforcement.

Watch American Democracy: Needed Reforms.