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March 29, 2022 0 Categories events, research

Celebrating Citizen Science Month 2022: Science Research for Everyone!

It's time to get geared up for Global Citizen Scientist Month 2022! 😃

What Is Citizen Science?

Citizen Science is scientific research conducted (partially or entirely) by amateur or non-professional scientists. Citizen scientists can be any member of the general public including hobbyists, students, professionals exploring new adventures, travelers, etc. Other names for citizen science include community science, crowd science, crowd-sourced science, civic science, participatory science, participatory research, or volunteer monitoring. And

There are good reasons to celebrate the contributions of citizen scientists. They often work in collaboration with real scientists (or science organizations and educational institutions) to gather, record, and interpret data and phenomena that scientists would not be able to do alone (No PhDs Needed: How Citizen Science is Transforming Research, Nature)

There is a wealth of information out there on the major contributions of citizen scientists and how anyone can get started on a personal citizen science journey. One recently published, highly-rated book is The Field Guide to Citizen Science: How You Can Contribute to Scientific Research and Make a Difference (2020) by Darlene Cavalier, Catherine Hoffman, and Caren Coo.

It's worth noting that citizen scientists are usually passionate hobbyists who want to contribute to science to make a difference.

What is Global Citizen Science Month 2022 and How Can Teachers and Students Participate?

For the entire month of April, science and education organizations will shine a much-deserved spotlight on citizen scientists of the world (whose contribution to the furtherance of science is just as important and inspiring as those of professional scientists). It's a great opportunity to engage students and their families, and the general public in events and discourse on all things science.

SciStarter (the founders and organizers of Global Citizen Science Month) have issued a Call to Action for everyone to easily participate in this year's celebrations:

"In just a couple of years, Global Citizen Science Month (April) has grown from a single day of events, to a coordinated effort supported by SciStarter, the National Library of Medicine, Arizona State University, the Citizen Science Association, Science Friday, National Geographic, and many other collaborators from around the world. Global Citizen Science Month encompasses events and opportunities to contribute to projects." -- SciStarter

They've created a hub on their website where you can view events, post events, and follow many of the activities happening around the world in person and virtually. There are more than 100 events posted already and there will most certainly be more posted in the coming weeks. Follow them on Twitter at @SciStarter and follow the events hashtag #CitSciMonth for event updates. And, if you're interested in hosting an event, download their helpful resources to get started.

We will be celebrating Global Citizen Science Month 2022 with you! For the entire month, we'll be sharing useful resources, need-to-know info, and must-attend events on all of our channels to help teachers engage students in community-based science research and discourse. Why is citizen science more important now than ever before? What tools and hands-on science curriculum should teachers use to engage students in citizen science projects?  And what will citizen science look like in the future?

We'll explore these topics and more throughout April!