Methods Matter: Citizen Science Techniques For Exploring Our World

By Arvind Suresh (Editor) April 28th, 2016 at 3:00 pm | Comment

Citizen Science Techniques

Each of the thousands of citizen science projects are unique, yet many rely on similar techniques and methods.

Below, we highlight five that use some of the most popular methods including: the use of low cost, portable sensors; bioblitzes; bird banding; standardized surveys; and photography.

Find more than 1,600 projects and events in the SciStarter Global Project Finder.
Cheers,
The SciStarter Team

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Orchid Observers: Tracking the Effect of Climate Change Through Citizen Science

By Guest April 26th, 2016 at 11:24 pm | Comment

Image Credit: Lucy Robinson, Orchid Observers

Image Credit: Lucy Robinson, Orchid Observers

by Russ Campbell

Orchids have long held an enigmatic mystique.  Perhaps their origins as tropical and subtropical plants found in exotic locales and an early lack of understanding of how they survive have contributed to their status.  By the 19th century, orchids were a status of the British well-to-do.

The famed voyager and scientist Charles Darwin was also obsessed with orchids.  After the publication of his famous book, On the Origin of Species, Darwin devoted much of his time to exploring the connecting between the orchid and its ecosystem.

Now, you don’t need to be Charles Darwin to help contribute to the science of orchids and their environment.  The Orchid Observers, a citizen science project based out of Natural History Museum in London, is asking plant aficionados armed with their smart phones and a careful tread to provide data back to the museum so researchers can study the impact of climate change on flowering time of UK’s orchids.

I interviewed Lucy Robinson, the citizen science programme manager at the museum, by email to elaborate on The Orchid Observers. Read the rest of this entry »

Categories: Citizen Science

The Science Behind WeCureAlz: A Participatory Research Project Tackling Alzheimer’s Disease

By Guest April 22nd, 2016 at 5:13 pm | Comment

Image Credit: Human Computation Institute CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0, Graphic by PachecoDesignlab.com

Image Credit: Human Computation Institute CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0, Graphic by PachecoDesignlab.com

by Egle Marija Ramanauskaite

Earlier this year, we introduced you to WeCureALZ – a groundbreaking new project that for the first time is set to use the power of citizen science to conduct Alzheimer’s research. Enabled by the support of the BrightFocus Foundation, the team is already preparing for the alpha testing of our first online activity – a game that will allow everyone to search for stalled capillaries in the brains of Alzheimer’s-affected mice.

With a beta launch planned later this year, we thought it was about time we tell you the key part of the story – the science behind WeCureALZ, and what is it that you – citizen scientists – will be helping researchers do! Read the rest of this entry »

Highlighting Citizen Science at the USA Science and Engineering Festival

By Arvind Suresh (Editor) April 20th, 2016 at 8:12 am | Comment

citscidayWhat better way to kick of a month long celebration of citizen science than at the USA Science and Engineering Festival (USASEF), probably the largest science festival in the country?

And kick it off we did! For two days, the SciStarter booth at USASEF featured citizen science projects that people of all ages could learn about and participate in, and several of its major partners including Discover Magazine, Astronomy Magazine, the Crowd and the Cloud and of course, the Science Cheerleaders.

Day 1 featured a live 1-hour Hangout on Air organized by Crowd & Cloud, an upcoming 4-part public television series about citizen science and how mobile technology is changing the way participatory research is conducted. Read the rest of this entry »

Categories: Citizen Science

Why You Should Be Excited about Citizen Science Day 2016, in One Amazing Video

By Arvind Suresh (Editor) April 14th, 2016 at 6:29 pm | Comment

If you haven’t heard already, Citizen Science Day is fast approaching!! April 16 is the big day and events celebrating CitSci run all the way through May 21. From being at science festivals to nationwide bioblitzes, there’s something for everyone.

To get you all pumped up we’re sharing this amazing video made by folks from The Crowd and the Cloud, an upcoming “4-part public television series exploring the new frontier of citizen science in the age of mobile technology.” They are also going to be live streaming a Google Hangout session from the 4th Annual USA Science and Engineering Festival which will include projects featured at the SciStarter booth. Watch this space for more details !!

Enjoy!

Categories: Citizen Science