Volunteer ‘community scientists’ do a pretty darn good job generating usable data

Volunteer community scientists, aka citizen scientists, help researchers with data collection that would otherwise be a time-consuming slog. But while community science can be a valuable learning experience, the question remains how useful the volunteer-generated data actually are in research. In this new study, researchers analyzed measurements of microscopic plant leaves done by community scientists and found that the volunteers generated high quality data — a vote of confidence for community science.Volunteer community scientists, aka citizen scientists, help researchers with data collection that would otherwise be a time-consuming slog. But while community science can be a valuable learning experience, the question remains how useful the volunteer-generated data actually are in research. In this new study, researchers analyzed measurements of microscopic plant leaves done by community scientists and found that the volunteers generated high quality data — a vote of confidence for community science.

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