Contextualizing Data

Part of the Ecology Disrupted Curriculum Collection.

contextualizing data main image


Contextualizing Data teacher's guide




Key Idea: Dr. Sujay Kaushal chose to compare urban, suburban, and forested streams to gauge human impact on streams.

Question:  Why was it important to incorporate the benchmarks and population densities of the different areas onto the graphs?
Answer: The benchmarks are a way to contextualize the salt levels in the Baltimore area with other salt levels.  The population densities show how many people live and drive in the area, which has a direct relationship to how many roads there are and therefore how much salt enters area waterways.

Note:  Remind students that NYC has a much higher population density (26.403 people/mile2) than Baltimore.