How to Join and Add a Map to a Group

Photo © charamelody

This article shows you how to join a group. Joining a group requires you have a map, since groups are collections of maps, not collectives of people. One participant can add multiple maps to a group, and a single map can belong to many groups. Read on to learn about how to get your maps involved.

For a general introduction to the Groups Tool, read this article. Or, to learn how to create your own group, read this one.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Step 1. The first step to join a group, is to find a group. If you click on “Find a Group” it will slide open to reveal a search box, where you can look for groups local to your area, for instance, by searching for the name of your town, neighborhood, state, or county, or for groups whose interests you share, for instance, by searching for “lawn alternatives,” “birds,” or “pollinators.” You may also be looking for a group run by a particular organization, like “Nature Canada” or “Wild Ones.”

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Step 2. Once you’ve located a group to join, open that group’s page by selecting “view group” or by clicking on the group’s name. To learn more about the data visualizations seen on a group’s page read our article introducing groups. Once the group’s page is open, find the “Join Group” button towards the upper right. In the image above this is circled in black. Click this button to start the process of joining the group.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology
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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Step 3. To complete the process of joining the group locate the “Select which site to join with” drop-down (shown in the image to the left). All the maps you’ve created will show-up in this drop-down. If you haven’t created any sites/ maps it will be empty. You will need to complete a map before joining a group.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Step 3. Check the membership conditions. When you select the “Join a Group” option, you will see any membership conditions set for the group you want to join. In this group you can see in the image above that the membership conditions are “You need to have completed your map for your measurements to be valid. Group admins will check before approving your request to add a site to this group.” You will need to tell the group admins how your map meets the membership conditions when you make your request to join the group.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Step 4. Once you select a sight to join the group from the drop down a text box requesting that you, “Please state why your site meets the membership conditions.” appears. You must indicate how your site qualifies before you can request to join the group. Whatever you write will be visible to the group admins who will approve or deny your request.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

After hitting “Submit Request” you will see a brief confirmation message visible in the image above. The admins of the group will receive an email asking them to review your request, and either approve or deny it. When they do either, you will receive and email at the email address you used to register for your Citizen Scientist account at Cornell.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

You can request multiple sites be added to any group, so long as they meet the group’s membership conditions. In the image to the left, you can see this person has 3 accepted sites, and 2 pending sites associated with this group.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Before you add a map to the group the group’s homepage will look like the image above. The statistics you see will not include data from your map.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Once your site belongs to the group, the data on this group homepage will include information from your map. You’ll be able to see how your site changes the group averages, and compare you site to the group averages.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

You should also be able to see your site listed in the “Member Sites” tab on the group’s pages.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

And, if you click “Expand Map” you should be able to see a map marker representing your map alongside markers for all the other maps in the group.

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Photo © Cornell Lab of Ornithology

If you want to check which sites are in which group, you can open the menu called, “Groups You Belong To” on the far left side of the Groups Pages. There you will find a list of your sites that have been joined to groups. Each site will show the groups it belongs to under its title. For instance, in the image above, you can see the site, Crain Park Way belongs to two groups: “test5” and “Measure Your Lawn.”

Want to create your own group? We’ve got an article showing you how.

Want to learn more about groups in general? We’ve got an article about that too.

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