Project Ideas for Project BudBurst in Higher Education

Thinking about incorporating phenology into your courses? Learn how faculty around the country are using Project BudBurst in their courses by checking out their profiles below.

If you'd like to get in touch with one of the faculty below or if you're using Project BudBurst with your undergraduates and would like to be included on this page, email us at

Dr. Sandra Davis

Assistant Professor of Biology

"I have my students in my Plant Biology course use Project BudBurst to monitor trees on campus. Students learn to use dichotomous keys to identify trees using winter twigs. They then work in groups and are given a set of three trees that they must identify, determine height, and map location. They monitor the trees and make regular reports to Project BudBurst. At the end of the semester, the lab groups pool their data to compare phenology of the different species."

University of Indianapolis, IN

  • Plant Biology
Terri Hebert

Dr. Terri Hebert

Assistant Professor of Education

"I use Project BudBurst with my freshmen students enrolled in the introductory class to scientific inquiry. We begin the semester with an informative walk around campus, hosted by the campus landscaper. He provides historical features of each tree, as well as methods used to provide a healthy environment for them to grow. After class, each student selects a tree that appeals to them. Throughout the semester, individual observations of the trees continue as changes are documented within their science journal. Results are shared within the Project BudBurst website. This has definitely provided a much needed perspective to the class as we witness, discuss, and record changes occurring over time."

Indiana University-South Bend,IN

  • Science methods for Pre-service Elementary Education
  • Intro to Scientific Inquiry

Julie Hein-Frank

Instructor of Science Education

“I incorporate Project BudBurst into my graduate courses for k-12 educators. Introducing teachers to Project BudBurst deepens their content knowledge of ecological patterns, systems and processes as they learn ways to involve and engage their students in the practice of authentic scientific inquiry. Participants then introduce their students to Project BudBurst as an accessible model of scientific practice for the classroom by providing opportunities for students to make meaningful contributions to real scientific research while learning strategies in observation, question development, data collection and the interpreting and reporting of results.”

University of WI-Green Bay, WI

  • Citizen Science in the Classroom
  • Methods of Field Biology for Educators

Dr. Sara Wyse

Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences

"Students in my course work in teams to devise a method to quantify bud break and leaf emergence on campus trees. They undergo peer-review, collect data and reflect on the efficacy of their method. Students present their work at a Bio100 symposium and upload their data to Project BudBurst. To build a campus phenology record, we study the same trees each fall (leaf drop and color change) and spring following the protocol of Long and Wyse 2012."

Bethel University, MN

  • Intro to Biodiversity
  • Ecology & Adaptation