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Web sightings: Volunteer to do science research

Screengrab from website:

Screengrab from website: Photo Credit:

If you love science and have always been interested in volunteering for a research project, but haven't had the means or the time, check out The goal of the site is to enable research that would not otherwise be possible or practical without the help of citizen volunteers who, via their computers, help examine some of the massive amount of data that has been collected.

Volunteers do not need any specialized background, training or expertise to participate. In many cases they examine photos and video clips and mark or annotate what they see. Depending on the research, online guides and tutorials help define what to look for, but in many cases you may still need to make your best guess. Even if you do make a mistake, the projects combine contributions from many volunteers, relying on the collective group wisdom to produce reliable and accurate results.

Currently, there are 33 projects that you can volunteer for, including discovering the secret life of chimpanzees, exploring the collective intelligence of the wildebeest, examining the galaxy through images from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, characterizing bat calls, monitoring wildlife in Chicago's park and urban areas, studying the lives of ancient Greeks, classifying more than 30 years of tropical cyclone data, tagging penguins in remote regions to understand their lives and environment, and tracking the locations and social behavior of California's condors.


DESCRIPTION Volunteer to sift through data to help research scientists.

TARGET AUDIENCE Science-minded adolescents to adults

BOTTOM LINE You may become part of the next great discovery.


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