High quality data is essential to successful YCCS. Youth
ownership of data quality is the
practice of giving young people responsibility for high quality
CCS data collection and analysis. As young people gain expertise
through practice, they can then be positioned to regulate data
collection and analyses for themselves and their peers. We found
that creating opportunities for students to be responsible for
data collection and analysis helped them understand data and the
role of data in scientific endeavors, and develop a sense of
ownership around their work in YCCS.
TIPS FOR IMPLEMENTING
1. Engage youth in the question “Are these data good enough for
somebody to use?”
Before and after data are collected, discuss what constitutes
“good data” based on how other people will use the data. Give
opportunities for youth to help determine what good data look
2. Develop a culture of questioning data.
Create routines or roles in which youth question one another (and
adults!) and ask for evidence to back up claims.
3. Break up a complex protocol into smaller tasks and roles for
which youth can take responsibility.
Youth can try out multiple roles, building expertise over time
and noticing how data quality relates to other work being done.
4. Encourage improvised practices.
Youth participants may come up with their own data collection
strategies or ways to analyze data that do not compromise the
scientific protocols. Look for these and, where possible, adopt
them across the group. Doing so shows youth that they can have
influence and bring their unique perspectives to science.