Getting Started

Ready to join us as a citizen scientist or submit your observations to the community database? Follow the steps below to sign up as a participating scientist and learn how to contribute your results. If you require any materials to perform the soil collection and nematode isolation projects (such as microscopes, petri dishes, beakers, or safety equipment) please tell us which materials you need in our form! Soil Science Lab has partnered with Foldscope to make microscope kits available and ready to ship for those in need. Please understand that while we will provide these kits free of charge, we are not able to cover the cost of shipping. If you are an educator, preference will be given to teachers at schools that are composed of at least 25% low-income students, or 25% of students that identify as an underrepresented race or ethnicity in STEM. This includes Native American or Alaska Native, Black or African American, Hispanic or Latinx, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander (Melanesian, Micronesian, or Polynesian).

#1. New Participant Sign Up

Students and teachers are welcome to sign up as participants in our study. All participants will recieve a Participant ID, which will be used to submit observations to our community database without revealing your name or other personal information. Please fill out the form below to recieve your Participant ID. The Soil Science Lab, in partnership with Foldscope, will also be donating materials to students and teachers in need of equipment. Please indicate in the form below whether or not you have access to the required materials and we will follow up with you directly via email.

#2. Collect data

Follow our tutorial to collect a soil sample and isolate the nematodes living within it.

#3. Contribute to our Community Database

Using our comminuty database is easy: once your have recorded your observations, use the link provided to you upon signing up (or provided by your teacher) and fill out the form with your Participant ID. Make sure to have an image of your nematodes ready to upload. If you would like to submit multiple observations, use the same link to fill out the form again.

If you run into any issues using the Soil Science Lab database, please contact us at [email protected].

#4. Download and analyze data

Following our beta testing phase, we will be releasing the observations collected by all of our citizen scientists. Please check back in May for our first data release!