Introduction and guidance
This free course deals with the importance of biodiversity and explores how anyone can contribute to and be involved in identifying and recording wildlife, as a citizen scientist. It looks at what citizen science is, who can be a citizen scientist and how citizen science facilitates public involvement in scientific research activities as individuals learn and build skills.
After completing this course, you will be able to:
- observe, record and analyse biodiversity
- join the iSpot community and learn from real examples how organisms are identified
- undertake observations and post these to the iSpot website
- use identification keys and other online aids to identification
- understand the use of a microscope as a tool to aid identification.
Moving around the course
In the ‘Summary’ at the end of each week, you will find a link to the next week. If at any time you want to return to the start of the course, click on ‘Course content’. From here you can navigate to any part of the course. Alternatively, use the week links at the top of every page of the course.
It’s also good practice, if you access a link from within a course page (including links to the quizzes), to open it in a new window or tab. That way you can easily return to where you’ve come from without having to use the back button on your browser.
The Open University would really appreciate a few minutes of your time to tell us about yourself and your expectations for the course before you begin, in our optional. Participation will be completely confidential and we will not pass on your details to others.