WEBCAST: Ocean Biodiversity - Discovering Marine Invertebrates

Watch the archive of the webcast featuring Smithsonian zoologist Dr. Karen Osborn. In the show, Karen explains how she discovers and names new species of marine invertebrates, such as acorn worms.

Smithsonian Science How: Ocean Biodiversity - Discovering Marine Invertebrates

Featuring Invertebrate Zoologist Karen Osborn

Meet Dr. Karen Osborn, zoologist at the National Museum of Natural History. Karen peers into the ocean depths using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) to look for organisms. Take a visual journey with Karen 200-4000 meters down to see the life she discovers in this mid-water habitat. Visit the surprising world below the ocean's surface, where polychaetes and other invertebrates abound. Find out how zoologists like Karen give names to the new species they find. Consider the signficance of ocean biodiversity for the systems that sustain life on Earth. 

Watch a recording of the March 26, 2015, webcast using the video player above. The show aligns with national science standards.

How do you participate in the webcast program?

1.  WATCH the archive video above

2. Get TEACHING RESOURCES for the webcast

3. Design an ASSESSMENT for your students


The Ocean Biodiversity - Discovering Marine Invertebrates Webcast package supports students in meeting the following middle school NGSS Performance Expectations by offering a set of resources that integrate science concepts with science practice skills.

MS-LS2 Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics

  • MS-LS2-1 Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence for the effects of resource availability on organisms and populations of organisms in an ecosystem
  • MS-LS2-2 Construct an explanation that predicts patterns of interactions among organisms across multiple ecosystems
  • MS-LS2-3 Develop a model to describe the cycling of matter and flow of energy among living and nonliving parts of an ecosystem
  • MS-LS2-4 Construct an argument supported by empirical evidence that changes to physical or biological components of an ecosystem affect populations