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Thursday, March 22, 2018

GIS Education Weekly: Enhancing Diversity, Expanding Geo in Journalism

Education News

A child's drawing of a scientist from a series of studies
by social scientist David Chambers. 
The Atlantic: What We Learn From 50 Years of Kids Drawing Scientists - The key question: Do they draw men or women? Via @josephkerski.

LinkedIn: Introducing a Framework for High Quality Project Based Learning - Tom Vander Ark introduces a framework. The work is funded by a few different organizations.

KQ2: Local Entrepreneur Works to Jump Start Kids Geography Skills - "... when a name of a state is pulled from the deck of cards, players leap onto the fold out map and correctly match the names of states with the image on the map."

For Students

Penn State shared a video of its Esri jobs / GIS jobs session that ran March 1. I'm sure it'd be valuable to other students, too.


Inside HigherEd: Udacity ends pledge for students to get hired or get their money back - Times change.

Journalism News

GlobeNewswire: Code for Africa and Radiant.Earth Aim to Grow Data Journalism in Africa - Code for Africa, a federation of civic technology and data journalism labs, and Radiant.Earth, a non-profit advocating for open geospatial data for positive global impact, are partnering. The goal is to research new and innovative applications of Earth observation data to support investigative journalism and storytelling, as well as capacity development.

GeoThink: Data Drive Journalism - On Tuesday, March 27 at 12:00 (EST), Geothink.ca will hold its eighth monthly Geothink & Learn video conference session on the topic of data driven journalism. It will highlight Geothink’s unique interdisciplinary perspective and include ideas from faculty, students and partners.

More on UW - Stevens Point

Diana Sinton commented last week on something pretty important that I failed to highlight regarding changes at Stevens Point:
About Univ-Wisconsin Stevens-Point, it's "Geography" that's being recommended for closing, but their "Geographic Information Science" will continue as an option and expand to a major.

I don't know under which department/program that major would now fall, but someone decided that was the value-added portion of what "Geography" had been. Real or perceived student demand? Reading national trends? Who knows what contributes to decisions behind closed doors. There's not nearly enough transparency about disconnecting "Geographic Information Science" from other academic content, whether it's geography or something else.
 Harvey Miller noted on Twitter
University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point is proposing elimination of their Geography program but creating a new program in Geographic Information Science. Too bad the divide between Geography and GIScience persists, to the detriment of both.
The Atlantic: It's Time To Worry When Colleges Erase Humanities Departments - Willard Dix ponders the Stevens Point plan for the future.


OU Daily: Women from OU department of geography, environmental sustainability speak on gender diversity in academia - The geography department at Oklahoma has increased its diversity in the last eight years in part due to a grant.

West Virginia University: WVU Geography Alumnus Receives National Outstanding Scientist Award - West Virginia University alumnus Jothiganesh Shanmugasundaram received an Outstanding Scientist Award during the National Conference on Climate Resilience for Sustainable Livelihood in Annamalai Nagar, Tamil Nadu, India on Wednesday, Feb. 28. His work is on water resource management in southeastern India.

Fiddlehead Focus: County Face: Chunzeng Wang of Presque Isle - A profile of Chunzeng Wang, who teaches GIS at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. 

Brookings Register: SDSU students rewarded for original scientific research - Kaitlyn Abrahamson, a master’s student in geography, has been named a recipient of South Dakota State University’s Joseph F. Nelson Graduate Scholarship. The award recognizes original scientific research and provides recipients with $2,500 for tuition and expenses. "Abrahamson is evaluating the effect of biochar made from corn stalks and leaves as a soil additive for soybeans in Brookings County. Her adviser is assistant geography professor Yanan (Nancy) Li."


TES: Geography must be a priority in our classrooms in pre- and post-Brexit Britain - Steve Brace, the head of education and outdoor learning at the Royal Geographical Society, argues for geography education.

Stephen Smith, aka @mapSmith, shared some "useful spatial tools [that] have emerged on the web" in a Twitter thread

I noted a survey last week on college GIS education from a faculty member at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO. He's shared the results in a PDF.

Inman: Fascinating map shows how U.S. grew and moved over time  - "A historian and Wikipedia editor teamed up to create a more detailed map of the U.S. population than the U.S. Census official figures."

Ralph Nader Radio Hour: Good New for the Environment - "Ralph spends the full hour with the co-founder of Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI [sic]), Jack Dangermond, talking about the gift he and his wife Laura gave to preserve 24,000 acres of incredibly bio-diverse California coastal land as well as their vision for all of the positive ways computer mapping software can be used." Dangermond speaks about education, too.

TEDxVail: Whys Of Where - Says @RSchultzGeoTech: "This TEDx talk by Dr. Joseph Kerski, will be a part of every class I ever teach. Take 10 minutes and then pass it along to one other person. Let’s teach the importance of spatial thinking to our future workforce." 

Industry News

Inside GNSS: Lawsuit Delay Hints at Shift in GPS Spectrum Fight - The folks who originally acquired what became LightSquared are suing the sellers for not disclosing the fact that the terrestrial data network would disrupt GPS and thus not be approved for use by the FCC. That suit is now in a holding pattern for nine months. I followed this story for years in a previous life; I have mixed emotions seeing it's still alive.

On and Off Campus

Students from St. John Paul II Catholic High School, Huntsville, AL were in Washington DC "Advocating for the Geospatial Profession" per a tweet from @mappsorg president-elect Mark Brooks.

University of Cincinnati Magazine: Our changing climate - "University of Cincinnati geography professor Tomasz Stepinski created a new interactive map that allows students or researchers to compare the climates of places anywhere in the world. The map draws on five decades of public meteorological data recorded from 50,000 international weather stations around the Earth."

The Marysville Advocate: Western Center accommodates students from rural areas - "Highland Community College Western Center in Baileyville [Kansas] serves many students from agricultural backgrounds and rural farm families, said Cara Baker, center director." Among the growing programs is precision ag, which covers both GIS and GPS.

Jefferson Public Radio: Rogue Valley Students Help Make Maps To Follow Pollinators - Students at Southern Oregon University helped build the Rogue Buzzway Project for people who want to track the progress of pollinators. For now it appears to be a CitSci data collection effort.

Union Recorder: Students curate antique map exhibit - "Taken from the collection of former Arts and Sciences Dean Thomas Armstrong and his wife, former Russel Library Director Janice Armstrong, 'You are Here' features more than three dozen 150+ year-old maps of Georgia and the surrounding area. Curated and researched by students of [Georgia College Museum of Fine Arts, Milledgeville] Professor Carlos Herrera’s museum studies program, the exhibit provides an opportunity for visitors to view maps of the American South as they would have been printed for an international audience."

China Daily: Chinese Academic Mapping Platform Launched - It's a collaboration between Harvard CGA WorldMap and Zhejiang University. Via Ben Lewis.

Courses and Programs

UASTEC has shared its UAS certificate and course curriculum.

The Shillong Times: GIS Laboratory Inaugurated At St Edmund’s College - "The Department of Geography, St. Edmund’s College, Shillong on Wednesday formally inaugurated the new Remote Sensing and Geographical Information System (GIS) Laboratory in the department." The school is one of the oldest colleges in northeast India.

Las Cruces SUn News: NMSU, industry partnership enhanced with PNM Foundation gift - "The New Mexico State University Foundation has received a two-year, $200,000 gift from PNM Resources Foundation to enhance the Geomatics program in the College of Engineering. The gift was a result of the New Mexico Professional Surveyors partnership to increase enrollment, and subsequently, the number of employable NMSU graduates for companies and services in need of professionally licensed surveyors in New Mexico."