The Secchi disk is a simple but effective tool used by lake scientists worldwide to measure the clarity (aka: transparency) of lake water. Taken at regular intervals, Secchi readings provide a reliable indicator of overall lake health.
The VLMP Secchi Simulator is an innovative tool developed to enable volunteer citizen lake scientists to meet recertification requirements online, reducing the frequency, and therefore the time and expense, of in-person recertification. It has been shown to be an effective means of ensuring that volunteer monitors gathering water quality data are using the proper protocol and that their readings meet a specific standard.
The Simulator includes both taking a virtual Secchi reading and a series of multiple choice questions designed to gauge understanding. Their responses and official Secchi reading are entered into the VLMP volunteer database.
The Secchi Simulator is also available to the general public as a learning tool, and is being used by a number of citizen lake monitoring networks throughout the country.