GIS at Central College, Pella, IA
Central College featured Rachel Frana, a senior environmental studies major, who is using GIS to map the locations and demographic data of over 8,000 families served by Des Moines Area Religious Council pantries in a recent story. At right: Rachel Frana ’15 is using GIS mapping technology to help food pantry network director Rebecca Whitlow, left, and DMARC executive director Sarai Rice, right, identify underserved areas of Des Moines.
That's great. This bit of the article is interesting. It's been updated since publication.
GIS at Central College
Central is one of few schools that require GIS instruction and experience for all environmental science majors. Frana was introduced to GIS in a course with Anya Butt, associate professor of biology. Frana said learning GIS is difficult, but she finds it interesting because the technology is useful in so many real-life applications. Butt also created an advanced GIS course for Frana and four other interested students at Central.
I appreciate the student's candor. And, I like that all environment science majors take GIS as a required course. What other schools require GIS for that major or others?
Linking Education and Community Challenges in Logan, UT
The is a great way to engage students in authentic learning. It's built on a model from the University of Oregon. The effort at Utah State is called Logan-USU Community Bridge Initiative:
Ten Utah State University classes will each look into one of six topics next semester in the pilot phase of the Logan-USU Community Bridge Initiative, which seeks to make use of local expertise to tackle community problems.
Among the problems noted, is one technology: story maps.
...the city’s trees, current and potential recycling programs, neighborhood improvement, the city after school program, GIS-based story maps and air quality.
I agree it's a great tool to tackle any of those issues.
Meanwhile, in Finland
Geography and geo-media are hot topics in Finland and will soon be better represented in the K-12 curriculum.
These education leaders believe Geography and the use of geo-media must be central to a core curriculum in school education.
After training, and using the SPACIT curriculum, teachers will develop course plans.
In Finland, teachers will prepare new local curricula based on this core curriculum by the beginning of school year 2016–2017.