Polar TEP provides support for educators who want to use our capabilities to facilitate teaching. The use of Jupyter Notebooks in Polar TEP provides an experiential teaching and learning environment that can provide many advantages to students. By using and interacting with Jupyter software tools, the community supporting the tools, and the protocols and standards developed by that community, a learner can go far beyond the typical computer laboratory and software development environment and enter an interactive learning ecosystem.

An eScience Lab document presents a general template for a Jupyter Notebook-based teaching tutorial using Polar TEP. An associated notebook example entitled “Using XCube in Polar TEP to Generate NDVI” provides a “Learning through Execution” approach to learning.

A traditional approach to learning how to read and write code would see a student read about the relevant programming language in a stand-alone document (e.g. textbook, web page etc.) then write their own code in an editor and execution environment. In a Jupyter environment, the learner reads and executes code and reviews related documentation in a single, integrated Jupyter Notebook. The instructor provides an operating Notebook that teaches specific coding concepts, or algorithms. The learners can then work through the Notebook code-cell by code-cell to experience the code in action. This pattern is particularly useful for introducing a topic or promoting awareness about a set of tools, including introducing application programming interfaces (APIs). This pattern can be used for a broad range of students with different levels of experience and background. A primary advantage of this approach is that it provides learners with a complete functional example that can be observed and potentially adapted (e.g., addition of new code, changing parameters) without having to debug or know all of the nuances of code syntax.

Polar TEP provides a custom environment for each course that consists of:

  • Student and instructor accounts
  • Any special datasets
  • Any custom libraries
  • A custom landing page