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Volunteer Field Observer Program

Volunteer Field Observer Program

In May 2010, Alabama Coastal Foundation and Mobile Baykeeper worked with Coalition of Active Stakeholders Team (COAST) partners to develop and implement the Volunteer Field Observer (VFOB) Program in response to last year's Deepwater Horizon oil release. The program's goal is to train volunteers to serve as citizen scientists, documenting shoreline conditions along Alabama's shoreline using GPS coordinates and alerting officials and COAST partners to the presence of oil and/or affected wildlife.

Project Details

  • PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Bethany Kraft, Executive Director
  • SCIENTIST AFFILIATION: Alabama Coastal Foundation
  • DATES: Ongoing
  • LOCATION: Alabama -
  • PROJECT TYPE: Observation
  • COST: Free
  • GRADE LEVEL: 18+ years old
  • TIME COMMITMENT: Variable
  • HOW TO JOIN:

    Visit the Volunteer Field Observer (VFOB) Program Web site and register for online training. Volunteers must be over the age of 18.

See more projects in AlabamaFreeObservation18+ years old.

What Is Citizen Science?

Research often involves teams of scientists collaborating across continents. Now, using the power of the Internet, non-specialists are participating, too. Citizen Science falls into many categories. A pioneering project was SETI@Home, which has harnessed the idle computing time of millions of participants in the search for extraterrestrial life. Citizen scientists also act as volunteer classifiers of heavenly objects, such as in Galaxy Zoo. They make observations of the natural world, as in The Great Sunflower Project. And they even solve puzzles to design proteins, such as FoldIt. We'll add projects regularly—and please tell us about others you like as well.

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