The Public Lab site is a social research sharing website for non-professional and professional scientists alike.
It's like an online lab notebook where students can:
- post their work
- get feedback from peers and other Public Lab members
- create a profile and recieve attribution for your contributions
- participate in open source collaboration
To start using PublicLab.org, ask each of your students to sign up and create a profile. (read on for privacy considerations and protective tactics)
Watch a brief video about how to post a research note, and read about research note posting here.
Consider the privacy of minors
This section is an extension of https://publiclab.org/wiki/anonymity#PublicLab.org written with minors in mind.
Some schools have internet access policies that can be compatible with publiclab.org with (some of ) the following steps:
- Do not use your real name as your username
- Do not use your first and last name together anywhere on the site
- Do not use any of your existing social media handles as your username
- Do not link back to your personal social media
- Do not share your gender; reduce/eliminate the use of gendered pronouns in your writing
- Do not share individually identifying photos of yourself on your profile page (photos of hands are OK, photos of faces are not)
- Do not share photos of your group in a research note in which individual faces are identifiable (consider adding friendly emojis or blur!)
- To protect the location privacy of minors while mapping and capturing/sharing geographic data, while posting research notes about your mapping activity or stitching images into maps in mapknitter.org, do not share photos in which individuals are identifiable, such as those taken close to the ground while launching or catching the camera.
- Do not share your location or address on your profile page
- Do not publicly post your contact info (email, phone, etc)
- Do not share personal health information
Teachers / Guardians / Parents may consider these additional options for how minors interact with PublicLab.org, as well as join the ongoing conversation about privacy and minors at https://publiclab.org/q/19897 :
- Teachers / Guardians / Parents could become moderators on the site in order to more closely monitor for the unintentional disclosure of personally identifying information by their students / children while sharing their work on PublicLab.org. Please email moderators(a)publiclab.org to explore this option.
- Not allowing students / minors to create accounts at all
- Only allowing students / minors older than 14 years of age to create accounts
- Creating teacher / guardian / parent-managed accounts on behalf of one, some, or all students
- Creating group accounts for students/minors to share. Example: “Team Dolphin”
Public Lab Resources for Teachers:
Public Lab has a number of resources for teachers.
There are a series of well documented physical science lessons published on this site as wiki pages.
- The first lesson is called "Wetlands, water and oil", and it can be found here.
- The second lesson, called "More than meets the eye" discusses visible and infrared light. It is found here.
- The third lesson is called "Photography in a new light". It is found here.
- The fourth lesson is called "Environmental Monitoring" and it can be found here.
Here are some additional activities particularly suited for use in the classroom:
Activities should include a materials list, costs and a step-by-step guide to construction with photos. Learn what makes a good activity here.
Posting assignments on PublicLab.org
You're welcome to post your own assignments to PublicLab.org with a "Post a Response" button, and have student's responses collected in your post:
Here are some examples:
|Post your spectra from a classroom spectrometry experiment||@warren||12 months ago||0||1|
|Final posts for Google Summer of Code||@liz||about 2 years ago||1||1|
|Aerial Mapping Projects in Environmental Science at The Thacher School||@thacherenvisci||over 2 years ago||3||0|
|Assignment: spectrometry at NAFCS||@liz||about 3 years ago||1||0|
|Wrapping up Google Summer of Code 2016!||@warren||about 3 years ago||6||2|
|Definition of User Streaks||@ananyo2012||over 3 years ago||1||0|
|Google Summer of Code 2016: draft proposals||@warren||over 3 years ago||1||0|
|Assignment: reflections on sensor journalism||@kanarinka||over 3 years ago||4||0|
|Holiday Beverage Whodunit||@cfastie||almost 5 years ago||3||6|
Looking for more information?
Check out the questions and answers below. If you don't see what you're looking for, ask a question of your own so our community can lend a hand.
|How could we design a group activity around siting air sensors?||@warren||4 months ago||1||10|
|What are some of the challenges of implementing a problem-based learning curriculum in your classroom?||@mimiss||6 months ago||0||4|
|What are some of your favorite community science projects from around the world?||@mimiss||7 months ago||1||3|
|Have you tried any good DIY microscope dyes or stains?||@mimiss||7 months ago||1||5|
|Ideas for a DIY + Maker class for 6th graders||@Kmckeown||about 1 year ago||2||6|
|What are good resources for teaching middle school age children about water quality parameters?||@stevie||over 1 year ago||1||5|
|What is the easiest and cheapest way to make a kite big enough to carry a camera?||@warren||almost 2 years ago||0||1|