LETS Day Resources

This site provide instructions and links to the protocols we will be using on LETS day. The documents describe the protocols to be followed, how the raw data will be processed and how the whole data set can be analysed.

Your task

The day will be split in to three parts:


You will learn your data collection job, form teams, read about your data collection job, and complete a pre-test designed to test your knowledge of your job.

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Late Morning – PLOT SURVEY

Working as part of a group, you will carry out a survey on some part of the of the hillside below or above Leysin. The survey will be carried out using protocols developed by the science staff at LAS. You will record data, and enter it into the appropriate resource in order to make it accessible to everyone.


Once finished surveying, your group will process your data to make a poster summarising the important points. In addition your group will consider the environment that you have surveyed and, by accessing the data from the whole mountain, find evidence to explain some of the features you observed during your survey.

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Because it provides an insight into how Science works in the real world, and the importance of following standard protocols when collecting data. You can only take a small amount of data. The Group can take a very large amount of data but it will only be useful if everyone collects their data in the same manner. Once collected, everyone has access to the whole data set. Hypotheses can be tested using data from across the whole mountain without any individual needing to visit every plot in order to collect the data.

If other schools and organizations (the worldwide GLOBE project, for instance) follow the same protocols, the dataset increases to incorporate samples from across countries and continents.

But it only works if the data can be relied upon.

You may not require the data you are collecting, but your contribution entitles you to use data from others, or ask them to collect other data that would benefit your line of research (next year, for instance, could the groups also collect polarization data using cameras that would allow analysis of airborne particles in different environments? Could pollen be collected and analyzed? -­ it is a fascinating thing to see under the microscope).

The Switzerland National Forest Inventory (NFI) provides some good information about the importance of ongoing surveys such as this, and the value of the data collected. They have produced a short film outlining many of the techniques we will be using, and why it is vital to follow rigorous protocols.

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