Learning about Citizen Science

Learning about Citizen Science

Did you know that scientists need your help? Sometimes researchers collect so much data they can’t even begin to look it all by themselves. That’s where you come in! Researchers can use citizen science to have future scientists (like you!) comb through mountains of data that otherwise would be impossible to analyze. This week’s activities turn students into citizen scientists. Scientists need your help to discover antibiotic resistant tuberculosis strains, count and track beluga whales, and examine seasonal changes on Mars!

Activities: 

Here are links to three amazing citizen science projects:

Using Bash the Bug, you help scientists comb through photographs of tuberculosis samples to see which ones are unaffected by antibiotics. This is real research that scientists do, there are just too many photos for one research team!

With Beluga Bits you help researchers count whales visiting a sanctuary. Spot individual whales, look for family groups, and generally help biologists understand beluga migration while looking at photos of amazing whales! (Note for families: this project does involve looking for whales’ sexes based on visible organs).

Explore Mars with Planet Four! The HiRISE camera on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter provides NASA with many images in extreme detail showing the seasons at Mars’ south pole. You can help astronomers looking through the photos to identify seasonal changes and help them better understand Mars’ climate and atmosphere.

For additional resources, check out our new STEM @ Home page!

Featured image source: nasa.gov