Appendix 1. Sample project announcement where records are vouchered by both specimens and
photographs. In the class for which data are presented in this article, the project was worth 15% of the
total course grade and was equal to one midterm exam in points; thus, one can scale these point values
up or down accordingly if adopting a similar weighting scheme. Although the geographic scope of our
project always centered on Millersville (the town surrounding the university), later years in our seven-year study permitted students to expand their scope beyond Millersville as the town’s flora became
Floristic Inventory Project (200 pts)
Towards the collective goal of knowing and mapping the flora of Millersville, your task is to make a collection and preparation
of 10 herbarium specimens (to total 10 separate species) from wild plants in Millersville. All materials (the physical, mounted
specimens, photographs, and their mapping on www.natureatlas.org, hereon as NA) are due in two months’ time at 5:30 pm
on Nov 3 (late projects deducted 10% per 24 hr period).
A. Important Notes Regarding Academic Honesty:
1. Work to identify these alone.
2. Do not team up with others to collect the “same” things. Although you can go out into the field with a classmate as a
travel companion, you cannot collect the same species from those localities, and you cannot help each other with the
B. Important Procedural Notes:
1. You must keep a field notebook that describes all necessary information and this information must be taken at the
time of collection. Your memory is not good enough otherwise and the Herbarium does not want specimens with
2. There can be no collections from any population that we identified to species together as a class, such as during a
3. You will not receive credit for records which duplicate the species of another of your records for this project.
4. Collect only wild plants. Do not collect cultivated plants (e.g., from a garden or cultivated landscape, unless it is a
5. You must press your plants between folded newsprint that is labeled with your name and collection number in the
lower right corner on the outside so your instructor can determine whose they are since s/he will be processing
them for drying and then will distribute them back to you once dry. Unlabeled specimens will not be accepted
6. You may not collect on private property without the permission of the owner.
7. You may not collect in any state or national park or forest without the proper collecting permits.
8. You may not collect plants within 5 m of a trail.
9. For herbaceous plants, you may not collect the only plant in a population or remove plants from a small population
(e.g., 20 plants or less). For larger plants (e.g., shrubs and trees), you may collect a cutting from the only plant in a
population that will fit a herbarium sheet, so long as the removal of that cutting is not so large as to negatively affect
the chances of that plant’s survival or reproductive success.
10. Information on special concern plants that are off-limits for collection will be described in class by your instructor.
C. Each Species is Worth 20 pts as Follows (point values in parentheses indicate potential deductions for insufficiencies):
1. NatureAtlas.org Entry
a) Accuracy of pushpin marker placement (4 pt)
b) Completeness and accuracy of information: all NA fields excluding “voucher comments” are required for this
project (1 pt ea)
c) Entry information must match precisely the information on the herbarium specimen label (1 pt ea)
d) Photograph of the plant: must be of that plant and must be your own photo (2 pt)