Scheduling a Monitoring Workshop

Workshops are taught from late March - early November throughout the state. The schedule is subject to change based upon the Coordinators availability due to other job responsibilities, weather and other factors. Various levels of training are available, but usually everyone begins with Level-One. If you are interested in attending a workshop already scheduled, contact the coordinator or check the calendar to register for a workshop.

Here are some initial considerations. You must have a minimum of six participants; there is no maximum, however there are difficulties teaching large groups (> 20) around a stream environment and in those cases additional assistance may be necessary. The coordinator will work with you to arrange dates and locations that are convenient. Contact the coordinator to get the process started. Other considerations are described below.

Logistics: Volunteer organizations, agencies, schools and others wishing to host a workshop are responsible for logistical considerations such as a safe and appropriate public access stream site and an additional space (room). Examples include a classroom, conference room, or other public meeting place such as a picnic shelter (weather permitting). This room is necessary so that hand-outs can be reviewed and other learning activities can be taught prior to the field portion of the workshop. If the host decides to provide refreshments for the participants, they may charge the appropriate fees for the food and drink and the facilities; however, there is no charge for the stream-monitoring workshop.

Resource materials will be provided based upon registration and may be mailed to participants prior to the workshop if their registration is completed in a timely manner, or the materials may be available on-site. Participants have the option of completing an exam, which upon passing certifies the volunteer pursuant to the §22-11-13 of the WV Code. If you are affiliated with a group who wants to begin a monitoring program, not everyone in the group needs to be certified, however a certified volunteer should be present during surveys. Basic monitoring equipment is available to certified monitoring groups that agree to the program’s MOU.


Who Should Attend?

Anyone interested in protecting and preserving our streams, rivers and wetlands should attend a workshop. Previous monitoring experience or other knowledge about ecology, biology, chemistry, physics, geology or any of the other sciences is not required. The workshops are appropriate for 5th grade through adult but can be tailored to younger participants as well. For those interested in a particular aspect of the stream habitat, the program supports and encourages special projects once your group becomes certified. These could be projects for college research, high school and middle school student projects, Eagle Scout projects, and others. Stream monitoring is also suitable for 4H groups, Girl Scouts and all other organizations that promote environmental education and encourage hands-on outdoor learning activities. In the past SOS has partnered with other organizations to offer continuing education credit for teachers that get certified and agree to the MOU.

Contact Information

Callie Cronin Sams, Environmental Resources Specialist Supervisor
West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection
Division of Water and Waste Management - Watershed Improvement Branch
Phone: (304) 314-6095

Additional Information

  • Workshop Agenda

    Workshops are designed to introduce participants to the basics of stream monitoring and provide a better understanding of stream ecology. The program teaches a variety of workshops, which can be tailored to the needs of the participants (i.e. intermediate and advanced monitoring workshops or workshops tailored to specific monitoring goals and objectives).

  • Districts

    Monitoring workshops are taught from late March through early November throughout West Virginia. In order to cover the entire state the coordinator has divided it into regions (basins) and will attempt to schedule four to six workshops in each region/year; but this schedule is highly variable.

  • WIB Calendar

    Watershed Improvement Branch calendar of events.

  • Workshop Registration

    This registration form is for scheduled stream monitoring workshops.

  • Workshop Packet - Handouts

    Resource materials available to stream monitoring workshop participants.

  • §22-11-13 of West Virginia Code

    Excerpt of the Water Pollution Control Act regarding volunteer water quality monitors.

  • Certification

    Certification is an important component of the program. It ensures program support, provides access to resources such as free or low-cost basic equipment, and it is especially important for maintaining quality assurance and quality control.

  • Memorandum of Understanding

    Terms and conditions for WV Save Our Streams.