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Gearing up for Professional Development Opportunities at the CSA Conference 2017

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Guest post by Marie Studer, Encyclopedia of Life Learning + Education Projects Manager, Harvard University Museum of Comparative Zoology
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The countdown is on to the start of the Citizen Science Association (CSA) Conference in St. Paul, MN!  This year, the conference opens and closes with several professional development opportunities and is jammed-packed with all sorts of engaging learning, networking and socializing opportunities. There won’t be a minute to spare!

As members of the CSA Professional Development Working Group (PDWG) we want to make sure you know about this year’s PD events so you can take advantage of the workshops being offered. Despite the term “professional,” the CSA’s PDWG aims to serve practitioners (paid or unpaid) working to support the design, implementation, and/or use of citizen science (see sidebar for links to more details on the PDWG). There are eleven PD workshops – nine on Wednesday and two on Saturday — covering a spectrum of topics and approaches of interest to citizen science practitioners. Two field trips are planned, which are great ways to get outside, stimulate your brain and see how local groups are approaching their work. To make sure we addressed themes important to the CSA overall we asked CSA Working Groups to submit ideas for workshops and, hopefully, have something of interest for everyone attending the conference.

Almost half of the workshops cover aspects related to creating and launching successful citizen science projects, including a Hack-a-thon where you can work with experts to build or refine online tools to enhance your participants’ experiences (or to even create a new project!). Other workshops dive deeper into specific topics such as ensuring data quality, setting-up project evaluation and examining ethics issues around citizen science. Communication, outreach and funding strategies and support will be discussed in other workshops, all of which are important for maintaining, growing and sustaining projects over the long-term. Four of the workshops cost between $15 and $50 and the rest are free, reducing the barrier to participation. All of the PD information is listed in Table 1 at the end of the blog post. You can see as of this posting four workshops are already sold out so make sure to check out the options to attend something, if you’re not already signed-up.

(By the way, it’s easy to sign up!  Log in or register here, click on the conference banner, and either register or choose “Modify Registration”).

During the conference the PDWG members will be interviewing and soliciting feedback from workshop leaders and conference participants about the PD offered at the conference. We want to learn about what worked, what didn’t work, what’s missing and what PD should be included at future conferences or through other CSA activities, such as webinars or locally-hosted events. We want to make sure we draw on, and support, the diversity of practitioners in the CSA. We’ll share these results in a post-conference blog.

See you at the Conference!

Table 1. Professional Development Opportunities at the 2017 CSA Conference (see here for the latest information and any changes to the schedule). NOTE: Capacity details as of 28 April 2017

Title

Type

Date/Time

Capacity

Cost

Create Together Day

Hack-a-thon

Wed 5/17, 8:45 AM – 4:30 PM

100 / 66 seats remaining

$45

Collective Troubleshooting and Problem Solving

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 9:00 AM-12:00 PM

30 / 4 seats remaining

None

Citizen Science Day

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 10:00 AM-11:30 PM

Unlimited

None

Elevating the value of Citizen Science Projects by Developing Approaches to Communicating Data Quality

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 9:00 AM-12:00 PM

52 / some seats remaining

None

Recruitment, Retention, Research & Evaluation Using SciStarter 2.0 Tools

Workshop

Wed 5//17; 11:30 AM-12:30 PM

Unlimited

None

Citizen Science at the College Level: Learning, Research and Mentoring

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

50 / 17 seats remaining

None

Learn to Create Data Visualizations: A Hands-on Workshop

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

25 / 4 seats remaining

$50

Sparking Positive Youth Development with Citizen Science

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

35 / 0 seats remaining  SOLD OUT

None

What is Your Impact? Learn to Evaluate our Citizen Science Project

Workshop

Wed 5/17; 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

25 / 0 seats remaining   SOLD OUT

$15

Writing Competitive Proposals to Federal Agencies

Workshop

Sat 5/20; 8:30 AM-11:30 AM

Unlimited

None

Filling the “Ethics Gap” in Citizen Science Research

Workshop

Sat 5/20; 9:00 AM-12:00 PM

Unlimited

None

Cedar Creek Field Trip

Field Trip

Sat 5/2; 8:00 AM-1:00 PM

50 / 9 seats remaining

$35

Mississippi River Canoe Trip

Field Trip

Sat 5/20; 8:30 AM-12:30 PM

54 / 0 seats remaining   SOLD OUT

$55

 

Posted on: April 28, 2017  |  Category: Blog, CitSci2017, Conference, News, Professional Development