Digital Tools for Citizen Science

CrowdHydrology Water Level Gauge.

Project description

The objective of this research project is to develop new digital tools to collect and process citizen science observations of water resources. Building on the existing Crowdhydrology project, the research assistant will help design and implement new computer codes to collect observations of water levels and flooding. These data will be used to develop improved models to forecast flooding and quantify stream flow in remote locations across the United State

Project outcome

Digital Tool Development:

  1. Citizen scientist user response interface to determine why people participate in the CrowdHydrology project (Python computer code linked to Twilio, which interfaces with existing Qualtrics survey)
  2. Image processing code to collect and catalog images of flooding submitted via text message of flooding (Python computer code, Twilio web scraper, user interface)

Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment About 3-5 months
Start time Anytime
In-person, remote, or hybrid? Hybrid
Level of collaboration Individual Student Project
Benefits Academic credit
Work study
Who is eligible All undergraduate students 

Core partners

Project mentor

Chris Lowry

Associate Professor

Geological Sciences

413 Cooke Hall

Phone: (716) 645-4266


Start the project

  1. Email the project mentor using the contact information above to express your interest and get approval to work on the project. (Here are helpful tips on how to contact a project mentor.)
  2. After you receive approval from the mentor to start this project, click the button to start the digital badge. (Learn more about ELN's digital badge options.) 

Preparation activities

Once you begin the digital badge series, you will have access to all the necessary activities and instructions. Your mentor has indicated they would like you to also complete the specific preparation activities below. Please reference this when you get to Step 2 of the Preparation Phase. 

Minimum: Coding experience in Python

Preferred: Experience with Twilio APIs, Database management, Image processing 


Coding, Python, Computer Science, Database, Geology