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Welcome to our ongoing effort to catalog citizen science and other public participation in scientific research (PPSR) projects for UC California Naturalists and other citizen scientists.  We invite you to browse the listed projects or enter key words (like birds, youth, invasive, coast, Alameda, etc.) in the search box above to find projects in your area. It's a great way to stay involved and keep developing your skills as a natural scientist!

A vast majority of the information in the database was gathered from project websites and may be out of date. We encourage you to contact projects directly to get involved and learn about most recent opportunities. If you work with a listed project and would like to add to, update, or correct the information we have, please email cghdixon@ucdavis.edu. Also, please consider filling out the "PPSR perspectives" survey. Click here to access the survey, which will help guide this project in the coming year.

If you know of a project not on our list, please go to the "tell us about a project" link on the left so we can list the project here. Thanks for your help!

Special thanks goes to the National Science Foundation Informal Science Education program and the Stephen J. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation for supporting this database of projects.

PM (Particulate Matter) Survey

  • Organization Name
    West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project
  • Organization Website
  • Partners
    N / A
  • Contact Name
    Cassandra Martin
  • Contact Email
    N / A
  • Contact Phone
  • Other Contact Information
  • Project Purpose (taken from project materials)

    The objective of this study is to evaluate the air quality of residential areas in West Oakland. The study will lead to the design of lower-cost sensors and instruments. This initiative provides an opportunity to:

    1. engage citizens in air quality monitoring and management practices
    2. “fill in the gaps” in state monitoring networks, and
    3. use new data sources for scientific research.
  • Participant Activities

    Survey teams use the Dusttrak 8530 to measure the PM levels in the air along specific paths close to homes and schools. The location of the survey team is tracked and recorded by the AMOD Global Positioning System unit.

  • Data Entry
    • Other
  • Other Participant Activities

    Participants can join other community organizing, advocacy and story telling activities.

  • System Studied
    • Air Quality
  • Geographic Scope
  • Region
  • Location
    West Oakland Neighborhoods
  • Location - Map
    1747 14th Street, Oakland, CA 94607
  • Time Commitment
    • Specific dates (see Other Information below)
  • Volunteer Qualifications


  • Volunteer Training

    Yes. Information about air quality and the health effects of pollution. You will also learn how to use professional air monitoring equipment and GPS devices.

  • Cost to Participant
    N / A
  • How will the findings be used?

    The PM levels and the location information are shown on a google-style map on the world-wide-web. Ultimately, results of this study may help support near-road PM regulatory programs and determine methods to distribute “citizen science” data.

  • Other Information

    This project partners with Common Sense, participatory sensing project, to develop easily deployed air quality monitoring devices. "Unlike high stationary sensors, Portable PM loggers record what residents breathe at ground level, near places (residential areas, schools, and parks) frequently traveled by the elderly and children."
    Future work: We are seeking funding to bring our air quality data gathering process indoors. We  want to engage our local schools in assessing air pollution inside school buildings and using that information to help reduce asthma triggers in the classroom. Our goal is to  empower parents through the schools to address indoor air quality in the home by helping families understand the structural and behavioral factors that affect indoor air quality. 

  • Photo
  • last update:
    N / A

If you work with this project and would like to add to or update the information below, please email cghdixon@ucdavis.edu.

If you know of a project not on our list, please go to the "tell us about a project" link on the left so we can list the project here. Thanks for your help!

This database is focused on projects in California focused on the environment. For opportunities outside California, as well as national projects that don't have a California-specific components, check http://www.birds.cornell.edu/citscitoolkit/projects.