COASST is transitioning to a NEW data entry portal!
Oh My Goodness!! COASST enters the era of fast, cool technology!
We have some exciting changes in the works! For the past year, we've been working behind the scenes to update our database and data entry system. After almost two years of work, we're in the final stages of this process and are excited to announce that COASST will be transitioning to a new data entry system later this summer.
We have now shut down our current data entry system.
If you usually enter your data online, you are in luck! For all surveys conducted between now and the new system launch, please send us your datasheets (either by email or snail mail). COASST interns will enter them here, allowing us to test out our new system without causing any of you undue hassle. Here's your chance to get a survey (or even two) in and not have to do any data entry.
We know change can sometimes be nerve-wracking, but we're very excited about our new system and think you will love it too.
What's great about the new system?
- Both beached bird and marine debris participants can enter data electronically
- Photos can be uploaded directly into the data entry portal (HOORAY!!)
- It uses the latest technology - meaning that it will be easier to put together visualizations of your data for the website so everyone can see what's up in near-real time!
What other changes are coming?
- For beached bird participants, we'll also be transitioning to a new datasheet layout. Don't worry, it's the same information, but in a slightly new format, with an updated cover sheet that will accommodate both programs.
- A new logo! We're updating our materials with a new COASST design that speaks to both our beached bird and marine debris programs.
- We're also developing a new protocol document for both programs, which will provide detailed information for all things survey related.
How do I learn the system?
- Not to worry - the new system is very user friendly. For beached bird participants, we'll send out instructions for the new data sheet, explaining anything that has changed. You'll receive a packet in April with these materials and new datasheets to use. As always, we're happy to answer any question that arise!
- Yup! We're also getting ready to send a survey out to all COASSTers who have been part of the program for more than a year. Some of you may remember the last time we did this. The information we gained about everything from whether we were providing you with enough training, to who you communicated to about COASST, to what you think about your local beach environment has helped us make COASST better and help other citizen science programs that are just getting started. Look for an email, or snail mail, survey to arrive in the next few weeks. Anyone who returns the survey will be entered in a special thank you drawing, and the prizes are amazing!
Thank you for your patience as we prepare for the next phase of COASST!
Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns.
Julia, Erika, Hillary, Tim, Charlie, Katie, Jenn, and the COASST Interns