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Thursday, August 16, 2018

GIS Education Weekly: U of Akron Cuts Geography and 18 other Degree Programs

Rankings and Reports
Number of top 100 Ranked Universities by Country
(My guess at a map title; one was not provided)
The latest worldwide rankings of universities were published on Wednesday. It's not something I follow, but my alma mater was excited to make the top 10, so it shared the news on LinkedIn. Those reading this newsletter want to know about the top schools for geography and related topics. Here you go: geography (listed in natural sciences), remote sensing (listed in engineering).

New Media Consortium/Educause: Horizon Report 2018 (pdf) - Educause acquired the assets of now-defunct consortium. Audrey Watters has a nice table of the report's education trends the report identified since 2004. Of note for readers, via Campus Technology: "Mid-term trends — those expected to hit the tipping point within three to five years — are proliferation of open education resources and a pickup in new forms of interdisciplinary studies that tap visualization, geospatial applications and 'innovative uses of open source tools.'"

On and Off Campus

Penn State: GIS graduate students study abroad to advance careers at home - Nine students took part in a Challenges in Global Geospatial Analytics course that takes students to several locations throughout Europe to apply a GIS approach to understanding refugee crises. "Students visited France, Belgium, Luxembourg and The Netherlands’ University of Twente, which is internationally recognized in GIS, to study the myriad available data on refugees. Their goal was to sift through all the data collected by various nations and organizations to develop a report leaders could use to visualize the issue and advance their decision-making."

NextCity: Chicago Segregation Mapping Project Makes Real-Life Connections - A Lane Tech student from the south side of Chicago photographs "map twins" - those living at similar addresses on the north and south sides. The exhibit is called The Folded Map Project.

Academic Minute: Using GIS to Help Victims of Domestic Violence - "Helping domestic violence victims in isolated areas can be hard. In today's Academic Minute, part of Washington College Week, Rachel Durso describes using data points to bring help to areas that need it." These short podcasts by academics are pretty cool. Is it an Alexa skill yet? That's how I'd like to listen to them.

CSUN: CSUN Researchers Tackle Water Issues Across Wide Range of Disciplines - "Students, faculty and staff across California State University, Northridge are conducting groundbreaking research and participating in innovative efforts to tackle one of the biggest challenges of the last several decades: water conservation." The projects take advantage of the school's Center for Geospatial Science and Technology.


USGIF is looking for volunteers to share its Intro to GEOINT presentation at local schools. All presentation materials are provided. "We have prepared presentation materials for you that is geared toward grades 5-8 and provides an overview of GEOINT—geography, maps, satellites, imagery, remote sensing, GIS, and careers. The presentation takes 45 minutes to one hour and is highly interactive with games, Q&A, stories, videos, and much more." Learn more here. Via LinkedIn.

Quote of the Week

RJ Hale (@RJHale):
Geo needs its Rosa Parks moment. Until that point - this is all just noise.
What would the Rosa Parks moment look like? What would happen? This is an interesting challenge question for geography and GIS students to ponder.


WLTZ: Auburn University Funding Part of the Ocular Melanoma Research - Research on Ocular Melanoma requires exploration of geospatial factors. Auburn University has stepped up to contribute funds for that specific part of the effort.

Cartography Playground: "This is the Cartography Playground, a simple and interactive website for explaining cartographic algorithms, problems and other matters. It is aimed at students of cartography who want to refresh and deepen their knowledge." This is part of a master's thesis. Via @kelsosCorner.

Dr. Stephen Robinson Blog: Teaching Digital Mapping with kepler.gl - "Like many DH [digital humaniies] teachers, I have had to look for an alternative to Carto to introduce students to digital mapping now that they have fully gated their platform." Via @kelsosCorner.

Reddit: GIS Text Book for a 1st year GIS Class? - The latest iteration of the question with replies from Reddit.

Programs and Courses

U of Akron Cuts 80 Degree Tracks - "Programs cut include bachelor’s degrees in art history, French, geography, math and physics, along with master’s degrees in history, physics, sociology and Spanish."

Community Impact: The Alkek Library of Texas State University will soon undergo renovations to create a new learning area - The San Marcos library will include a GIS center which focuses on geospatial design and research.

Southern Miss Now:  Professor to Examine Climate Change in New Course Offered by Department of Geography and Geology - "Climate Change: Past, Present and Future" is offered by the USM Department of Geography and Geology and provides credit in toward either subject.