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Citizen SciencePublic Participation in Environmental Research$
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Janis L. Dickinson and Rick Bonney

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449116

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449116.001.0001

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What Is Our Impact?

What Is Our Impact?

Toward a Unified Framework for Evaluating Outcomes of Citizen Science Participation

(p.82) 5 What Is Our Impact?
Citizen Science

Tina Phillips

Rick Bonney

Jennifer L. Shirk

Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on citizen science program evaluation in informal settings. It first considers the historic rationale for evidence-based educational research before presenting a working matrix, modified from an evaluation framework developed in 2008 under the auspices of the National Science Foundation (NSF) for assessing the educational impacts of citizen science and other public participation in scientific research projects. It explains the theoretical basis of the matrix and illustrates its use with an example from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's NestWatch program. The chapter concludes with recommendations for developing systematic evaluations of citizen science and other forms of public participation in scientific research. These ideas are also intended to help guide overall thinking about evaluation design and instruments.

Keywords:   citizen science, program evaluation, evidence-based educational research, National Science Foundation, educational impact, public participation, scientific research, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, NestWatch

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