National Ocean Sciences Bowl

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) competition is a nationally recognized and highly acclaimed high school academic competition that provides a forum for talented students to test their knowledge of the marine sciences. The competition encourages students, along with their teachers and parents, to learn more about the oceans and to raise public understanding of the national investment in ocean-related research. About 2,000 students from more than 300 high schools nationwide participate in this academic competition every year, answering questions about biology, chemistry, geology and physics of the oceans, as well as navigation, geography and related history and literature.

Each February, regional competitions are held at 25 locations across the country. The winning team from each of the 25 regional competitions is provided transportation and room and board accommodation to advance to the NOSB Finals Competition, held in a different location each spring.

The USC Wrigley Institute, along with the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, are proud sponsors of the Los Angeles regional competition -- the Los Angeles "Surf Bowl" -- for teams of high school students from around Southern California.

Objectives of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl

  • To broaden the awareness and understanding of high school students, teachers, and parents of the latest scientific research on the oceans and the impact of the oceans on global climate and weather, economics, history and culture.
  • To expose teachers to the value of using the oceans in disciplinary and cross-disciplinary science education to teach biology, physics, chemistry, geology and math.
  • To help oceanographic research programs at university and other facilities establish a connection with members of pre-college communities.

The 2014 NOSB regional competitions will begin in February 2014. The Finals Competition will be held in Seattle, Washington on May 1-4, 2014. For additional information about the National Ocean Sciences Bowl regional “Surf Bowl” competition in Los Angeles, please contact:

Kimberly A. Lievense
Email: Kimberly.A.Lievense@jpl.nasa.gov 
Phone: (818) 354-0112 
Manager, Public Services Office
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
4800 Oak Grove Drive 
M/S 186-115
Pasadena, California 91109

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl is a collaboration of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership and the NOSB host institutions. The NOSB is generously supported by U.S. government agencies through the National Oceanographic Partnership Program as well as by corporations, foundations and other non-governmental organizations.

Check this map to find information about an NOSB competition near you.

Download the NOSB’s new career resource: An Ocean of Possibilities!
There are so many options for careers related to ocean and aquatic science. This booklet will give you just a sense of those opportunities so that, with a mind open to possibility, you can chart your own course.


  • USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies
  • 3616 Trousdale Parkway, AHF 410
  • Los Angeles, California 90089-0371