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Current Approaches in Implementing Citizen Science in the Classroom

    Authors: Harsh R. Shah1, Luis R. Martinez1,*
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    Affiliations: 1: Department of Biomedical Sciences, NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine, New York Institute of Technology, Old Westbury, NY 11568-8000
    AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION AUTHOR AND ARTICLE INFORMATION
    • Published 01 March 2016
    • ©2016 Author(s). Published by the American Society for Microbiology.
    • [open-access] This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/legalcode), which grants the public the nonexclusive right to copy, distribute, or display the published work.

    • *Corresponding author. Mailing address: New York Institute of Technology, College of Osteopathic Medicine, Northern Boulevard, P.O. Box 8000, Riland Building, Room 027/028, Old Westbury, NY 11568-8000. Phone: 516-686-1271. E-mail: [email protected].
    Source: J. Microbiol. Biol. Educ. March 2016 vol. 17 no. 1 17-22. doi:10.1128/jmbe.v17i1.1032
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    Abstract:

    Citizen science involves a partnership between inexperienced volunteers and trained scientists engaging in research. In addition to its obvious benefit of accelerating data collection, citizen science has an unexplored role in the classroom, from K–12 schools to higher education. With recent studies showing a weakening in scientific competency of American students, incorporating citizen science initiatives in the curriculum provides a means to address deficiencies in a fragmented educational system. The integration of traditional and innovative pedagogical methods to reform our educational system is therefore imperative in order to provide practical experiences in scientific inquiry, critical thinking, and problem solving for school-age individuals. Citizen science can be used to emphasize the recognition and use of systematic approaches to solve problems affecting the community.

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References & Citations

1. Ben-Ari M 2005 Just a theory: exploring the nature of science 40 Prometheus Books Amherst, NY
2. Bonney R, et al 2009 Citizen science: a developing tool for expanding science knowledge and scientific literacy BioScience 59 11 977 984 10.1525/bio.2009.59.11.9 http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/bio.2009.59.11.9
3. Brown PL, Abell SK, Demir A, Schmidt FJ 2006 College science teachers’ views of classroom inquiry Sci Educ 90 5 784 10.1002/sce.20151 http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/sce.20151
4. Cronje R, Rohlinger S, Crall A, Newman G 2011 Does participation in citizen science improve scientific literacy? A study to compare assessment methods Appl Environ Educ Communic 10 135 145 10.1080/1533015X.2011.603611 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1533015X.2011.603611
5. DeBoer GE 1991 A history of ideas in science education: implications for practice Teachers College Press New York, NY
6. Dickinson JL, et al 2012 The current state of citizen science as a tool for ecological research and public engagement Frontiers Ecol Environ 10 6 291 297 10.1890/110236 http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/110236
7. Ford MJ, Wargo BM 2007 Routines, roles, and responsibilities for aligning scientific and classroom practices Sci Educ 91 1 133 157 10.1002/sce.20171 http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/sce.20171
8. Gilmer PJ, Hahn LL, Spaid MR 2002 Experiential learning for pre-service science and mathematics teachers: applications to secondary classrooms Southeast Eisenhower Regional Consortium for Mathematics and Science Education at SERVE Tallahassee, FL
9. Gray SA, Nicosia K, Jordan RC 2012 Lessons learned from citizen science in the classroom. A response to “the future of citizen science” Democracy Educ 20 2 Article 14
10. Haines R 2011 Citizen science: real-world application for science students Learn NC [Online.] http://www.learnnc.org/lp/pages/7210
11. Hickey DT, Kindfield ACH, Horwitz P, Christie MAT 2003 Integrating curriculum, instruction, assessment, and evaluation in a technology-supported genetics learning environment Amer Educ Res J 40 2 495 538 10.3102/00028312040002495 http://dx.doi.org/10.3102/00028312040002495
12. Jordan RC, Ballard HL, Phillips TB 2012 Key issues and new approaches for evaluating citizenscience learning outcomes Frontiers Ecol Environ 10 6 307 309 10.1890/110280 http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/110280
13. Jordan RC, Ruibal-Villasenor M, Hmelo-Silver CE, Etkina E 2011 Laboratory materials: affordances or constraints? J Res Sci Teach 48 9 1010 1025 10.1002/tea.20418 http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/tea.20418
14. Malykhina E 2015 8 apps that turn citizens into scientists Scientific American [Online.] www.scientificamerican.com/article/8-apps-that-turn-citizens-into-scientists/
15. Mueller MP, Tippins D, Bryan LA 2012 The future of citizen science Democracy Educ 20 1 Article 2
16. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine 1996 National Science Education Standards The National Academies Press Washington, DC
17. Nov O, Arazy O, Anderson D 2014 [email protected]: what drives the quantity and quality of online citizen science participation? PLoS One 9 4 e90375 10.1371/journal.pone.0090375 24690612 3972171 http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0090375
18. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 Assessment and Analytical Framework OECD Publishing Paris
19. Pannoni A 2015 Engage high schoolers with apps they love US News [Online.] www.usnews.com/education/blogs/high-school-notes/2015/01/12/engage-high-schoolers-with-apps-they-love
20. Trumbull DJ, Bonney R, Bascom D, Cabral A 2000 Thinking scientifically during participation in a citizen-science project Sci Educ 84 2 265 275 10.1002/(SICI)1098-237X(200003)84:2<265::AID-SCE7>3.0.CO;2-5 http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/(SICI)1098-237X(200003)84:2<265::AID-SCE7>3.0.CO;2-5
21. Wieman C, Gilbert S 2015 Taking a scientific approach to science education, part II—changing teaching Microbe 10 5 203 207

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/content/journal/jmbe/10.1128/jmbe.v17i1.1032
2016-03-01
2019-02-18

Abstract:

Citizen science involves a partnership between inexperienced volunteers and trained scientists engaging in research. In addition to its obvious benefit of accelerating data collection, citizen science has an unexplored role in the classroom, from K–12 schools to higher education. With recent studies showing a weakening in scientific competency of American students, incorporating citizen science initiatives in the curriculum provides a means to address deficiencies in a fragmented educational system. The integration of traditional and innovative pedagogical methods to reform our educational system is therefore imperative in order to provide practical experiences in scientific inquiry, critical thinking, and problem solving for school-age individuals. Citizen science can be used to emphasize the recognition and use of systematic approaches to solve problems affecting the community.

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