This series began with a workshop I taught at the Geographical Association conference. One goal I had in creating the videos is to model how ArcGIS can be used in an instructional setting. The first 3 parts in the series focus on why and how web-based GIS can be used to teach geography, specifically, ArcGIS
Online. One reason I chose ArcGIS Online as the main tool is because it allows students, using only a web browser and an internet connection, to quickly investigate real world issues in real places, from local to global scale, developing spatial thinking, critical thinking, and GIS skills and “habits of mind” in the process. These maps can be customized, saved, edited, and shared with others.
While each of the first three parts provides practical examples, parts 4 through 7 in the series delve deeply in problem solving with specific issues and themes. Part 4 uses World Bank data and maps to investigate global demographic variables, including birth rate, life expectancy, and population change, by country, from 1960 to the present. Part 5 analyzes the pattern of neighborhood deprivation and poverty, and lack thereof, using the UK as an example. Part 6 asks questions about plate tectonics , including earthquakes, plates, volcanoes, on a global scale, and then analyzes seismic and volcanic activity on a local scale in Texas and on Mount Etna, Italy. This video also shows how to bring in real-time data into the analysis to compare the difference between the last 30 days of earthquakes versus earthquakes dating back hundreds of years. Part 7 discusses three ways to map data that students have collected, by directly adding points, lines, and areas, from data from the field via GPS and smartphones, and from multimedia sources, including video, photographs, sketches, and text onto maps and presentations that tell the story of their project.
How could you and your students make use of these videos, and how could you use ArcGIS Online in the classroom?
- Joseph Kerski, Esri Education Manager