e-learning and citizen science….points of contact

My interest in citizen science is multifold, but for the purpose of this discussion it will focus on online citizen science projects and the points of contact/overlap or collaboration that can exist with e-learning.

Citizen science “is a participatory process for including all sectors of society in the development and conduct of public-interest research … ” (definition from Coastal CRC citizen science page). Using internet based technologies connects participants in the citizen science process and can ease data gathering, access and knowledge creation. This process would seem to create a “learning space” which could lead to greater understanding of the processes and data for citizens involved in the projects.

As of now I am unaware of any online citizen science projects which integrate a strong social e-learning element or module into the process. I find it hard to believe they don’t exist already and would like to find examples of such integration.

In the active e-learning courses we conduct there is a solid and integral element of physical engagement with the world. This movement out into the world to act and then coming online to interact with others can be easily seen as expanding or re-focusing to include elements of data collection and research.

More to come……

How, When and Why of Forest Farming – Designing a site/community

Below is an attempt to lay out the design rationale for development of an online course and learning community for forest farming. This process is underway now and involves a core group which is geographically dispersed over New York and Pennsylvania.

“Our initial motivation in using MOODLE to work with, as the core HWWFF group, was that it would allow all of our members to become acquainted with the tool they would ultimately be using to host online learning communities. MOODLE is a learning content management system which relies strongly on the social aspects of learning and knowledge construction. It has a range of tools which bring learners together online to engage in activities and discussions meant to form a “community of learners”.
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