Sunday, March 26, 2017

Coral Finder Workshops


The Coral Identification Capacity Building Program (CICBP) runs Coral Finder workshops for institutions, organisations and groups of individuals. The workshops provide an effective, high quality and rapid introduction to the art, and science, of basic and intermediate level coral identification.

Coral Finder workshops:

  • are lead by Russell Kelley – author of the Indo Pacific Coral Finder and Program Director of the CICIBP
  • allow you to identify corals to genus regardless of growth form
  • show you how apply these skills to resource monitoringIMG_8528
  • provide an understanding of the basic principles of species level identification
  • involve intensive lecture and practical sessions
  • may include access to coral skeleton reference collections – pending the location
  • may include field sessions (snorkel or SCUBA) pending the location
  • provide access to expert tutors
  • provide high quality, personal hands-on instruction
  • include a take home DVD of  plain language training movies and course materials designed for the motivated, self directed learner
  • are supported by the Coral Hub website
  • overcome the problems traditionally associated with fly-in / fly-out expert workshops
  • get rapid results for beginner to intermediate learners and are well regarded by experts as the best way to learn, revise or upgrade your coral skills
  • come in 1, 2, 3 or 4 days formats


Formal evaluations of Coral Finder workshops in Fiji demonstrated significant improvements in coral identification skills. Participants were evaluated for prior knowledge and again after a one hour introduction to the Coral Finder (Pre-Workshop). The final evaluation (Post-Workshop) took place at the end of the 4 day workshop. Coral identification accuracy improved rapidly after exposure to the Coral Finder and continued to improve throughout the workshops. The Coral Finder puts coral identification to genus level within reach of beginners. Intermediate level participants also dramatically improved their coral identification skills and recommended the tool for rapid revision and ongoing learning.

Feedback about the workshops and resources from participants has been very positive with over 80% the participants using the Coral Finder and their improved skills as part of their work program within 3 months of completing the workshop. Participants also receive additional Coral Finder Toolkit do-it-yourself practical resources for coral identification – which includes a copy of the Indo Pacific Coral Finder and other in-water tools.

For people with an appropriate background, experience and skills the CICBP will also run refreshers, “training the trainers” and advanced level workshops.

Organisations interested in holding a Coral Finder Workshop can contact the CICBP at:
enquiry [ at ] coralhub.info

Numerous organisations and groups have taken advantage of our capacity building workshops. The following gallery lists the average improvement results for our 2011 workshops to date.  For each workshop the participants are evaluated for prior knowledge at the beginning of the workshop and again at the end of the workshop.  Typical improvements are of the order of 60-80% –  (see gallery). The workshops work well for users of all skill levels.