Broader Impacts

COSEE NOW supported scientists in the development and implementation of Broader Impacts on science research.


The “Broader Impact Wizard” guides you through a series of steps to construct a statement that satisfies the Broader Impacts (BI) criterion of a research proposal. The goal of this “smart” software is to help you identify your target audience and plan appropriate BI activities, budget, objectives, and an evaluation plan. This process culminates in a summary report, combining your input with additional support information such as relevant connections to educational research literature and effective practices. The BI Wizard is designed to help you create a broader impact statement and/or share this information with a potential BI partner.

For additional information, check out the Introductory Video.


Education & Public Outreach (EPO) Guide This guide provides information on preparing EPO projects, finding partners, communicating effectively, and evaluation.

NSF Resources These two documents, The Revised NSF Merit Review Criteria and NSF’s BI Representative Activities, help to clarify what elements should be considered when constructing and submitting your broader impact statements for proposals and list some suggested activities to fulfill the broader impacts requirements.

Learning Sciences References This page includes an annotated bibliography of all the educational literature, organized by audience, in the Broader Impact Wizard.

Case Studies Each case study includes an interview with the scientist about their broader impact activities, how they got involved, who they worked with, any challenges and benefits, what it cost, and how they measured success.

editingredpenExample BI Statements & Expert Critiques Each of the following example BI statements (Example 1, Example 2 , and Example 3) have been reviewed and critiqued by Education and Public Outreach (EPO) experts. These examples are part of a larger discussion within the COSEE NOW community on what makes for an strong, effective BI statement.

csidCenter for the Study of Interdisciplinarity – NSF Broader Impacts Criterion website  CSID has an extensive collection of resources examining the broader impacts criterion, as well as for helping researchers to address the broader impacts of their grant proposals.



Next Steps You’re funded, now what? This page will provide you with tips and resources aimed at helping you design and implement your broader impact project.

Evaluation Resources These resources provide additional guidance on the evaluation process and the design and implementation of education projects.

Additional Funding for Education & Public Outreach Activities This link provides a list of potential funding sources to enhance or scale up your broader impact activities.

Journals to Publish Education & Public Outreach Results Similar to your scientific research, it is also important to publish the results of your broader impact projects. This page provides a list of potential journals in which you can publish your broader impact work.


Ross Sea Connection Drs. Josh Kohut (Rutgers University), Chris Measures (University of Hawai’i), and Phoebe Lam (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) lead a research mission beginning on January 19th, 2011, aboard the icebreaking ship Nathaniel B. Palmer to study the Ross Sea, a shallow bay in the Antarctic coastline due south from New Zealand. They were interested in learning about the phytoplankton at the base of the Ross Sea’s food web and the special combination of currents, nutrients, and trace metals that allow it to thrive. In combination with their mission, a team of New Jersey and New York middle school classrooms participated in mission-specific science lessons, talked with the science team while they were down in Antarctica, and engaged in the research mission through the mission blog. To learn more about the project visit the Ross Sea Connection website.

FerrOCious Gulf Dr. Silke Severmann (Rutgers University) and other scientists lead a research mission beginning on July 31, 2011, aboard the ship R/V Endeavor to study where marine organisms get their iron from, how it is exchanged between the mud on the seafloor and the water above it in the Gulf of Mexico. The mission included a team of 11 scientists (including three students), two teachers, one science technician and 13 crew. Students from schools in Florida, Louisiana and New Jersey followed their progress through lessons and the mission blog. To learn more about the project visit the FerrOCious Gulf website.

Project PARKA Drs. Grace Saba (Rutgers University) and Brad Seibel (University of Rhode Island) are leading a research project beginning in the winter 2013 at Palmer Research Station, Antarctica, to study the synergistic effects of elevated carbon dioxide (CO2) and temperature on the metabolism, growth, and reproduction of Antarctic krill (Euphausia superba). The science team will conduct multiple field-laboratory experiments in the winter of 2013 and 2014. In combination with their research project, a group of Kansas high school classrooms will participate in mission-specific science lessons, talk with the science team while they are down in Antarctica, engage in the research mission through the science and student blogs, and participate in a Student Research Symposium in which the students and scientists present their research to one another. To learn more about the project visit the Project PARKA website.

ehuxNorth Atlantic VICE  Drs. Kay Bidle (Rutgers University), Ben Van Mooy (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution), Marco Coolen (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution), Jack DiTullio (College of Charleston) and Assaf Vardi (Weizmann Institute of Science) embarked on a 30 day research cruise in the North Atlantic to study how viruses infect their phytoplankton host and the effect that this has on carbon and sulfur cycling. The research team was joined by a write Rose Eveleth, whose blog on the Scientific American website helped share this research with a very large audience, the general public.  To learn more about the project visit North Atlantic VICE website.

synergyThe Synergy Exhibit Eight professional artists were paired with ocean scientists from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in a program dedicated to fostering collaborations between artists and scientists.  The participants were challenged to translate across disciplines and formulate a shared voice. This dialogue motivated the scientists to consider their research through an aesthetic lens, and the artists to develop new visual strategies for communicating science in engaging ways. The result is a creative expression of cutting-edge oceanography.

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