You are here

Computer-based data exercises

Managing and analyzing data sets are important skills for everyone to learn. From personal finances to classroom grades to research data, everyone should be able to use spreadsheets to perform basic data processing, analysis, and visualization. On this page you can download phenological data and practice these skills with step-by-step instructions. In the process you'll learn more about how CPP scientists are working to detect biological responses to climate change.

Do you have a phenological data set that you’d like to contribute? Contact us.


Skeletons in the Closet -- an herbarium-based phenology data activity

       Step-by-step guide (3MB)       |       Data set (19KB)

An herbarium is a research and education center much like a museum or a library, but where plants that have been collected from all over the world are curated and stored for hundreds of years. In essence, herbaria are extensive repositories of biological information from which we can learn more about climate change. To learn more about how herbarium specimens have been used to study climate change, download our Primer on herbarium-based phenological research (1.5MB).

Using a data set derived from herbarium specimens collected in California from 1906-2009, you’ll be guided step-by-step through the processes of organizing, summarizing, visualizing, and analyzing the data using Microsoft Excel. An introduction in the guide provides background on herbaria, the motivations behind the research project, and the structure of the data set. Discussion questions and suggestions for continued learning are included for each section.