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Thursday, April 23, 2020

GIS Education Weekly: Remote Student Software Access at Paul Smith's and WIU

Resources for Teaching and Learning

Twitter: Robert Roth shares his "cognitive map of new outdoor social-distancing routines during COVID-19." That's great exercise for students (of all ages) to do with pen and paper or technology. See also: City Lab: Your Maps of Life Under Lockdown.

Google Earth Blog: Tips for learning at home with Google Earth - "Here are four easy ways anyone can use Google Earth as a learning tool or even simply to experience new places and adventures while staying safe at home." Via @deanPhillipsMT.

Medium: Geography and COVID-19 - "As journalists dig deep in the coming weeks and examine the myriad of changes brought about by COVID-19 they should consider the geographical Fault Lines within their communities. Considering the Fault Lines of a story can bring nuance and context to topics." This article from the The Maynard Institute for Journalism Education includes an exercise.

CNN: David Attenborough to teach geography to schoolkids in lockdown - "The pioneering broadcaster and naturalist will educate students on topics like mapping the world, animal behavior and the world's oceans, as part of the BBC's new virtual learning program, 'Bitesize Daily,' which launched Monday."

HotOSM: The group is looking for volunteers to enhance maps in support of COVID-19 response. Here are the open projects mapping Peru and Mali.

Get Kids into Survey (blog): Home Schooling – The recent issue of a newsletter from Get Kids into Survey has a list of resources to use at home.

The GDSL Big List of Teaching Links - Alex Singleton of the University of Liverpool shares "links to useful teaching resources for teaching Geographic / Spatial Data Science, GIS and Statistics." Via @dianamaps.

EarthSchool: UNEP, TED-Ed and other collaborators offer EarthSchool an online environmental education platform.  Here's the press release from the UNEP. Via LinkedIn.

GeoED'20 National Conference: The online event is June 9 and 10. There are tracks for open source, ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Pro and UAVs.

Would you take a course from an individual who posted this ad at right? Would you leave this ad up on a LinkedIn group you host? Would you communicate with poster? What would you do? I saw the ad running in two different GIS-related groups last week.

On and Off Campus

University of Montana: MSU student’s research applies GIS to avalanche terrain - Everett Coba, a senior in the Department of Earth Sciences in MSU’s College of Letters and Science, applied "a spatial science modeling system to the area [near Ketchum] that gauges avalanche danger and terrain difficulty based on a variety of factors."

Onward State (Penn State's Student Blog): Staff Picks: Classes Seniors Recommend Most - Senior Anthony Colucci, psychology and public relations major, selected GEOG 20: "I took GEOG 20, Intro to Human Geography, during my first semester, and four years later, it remains my favorite class of college. Roger Downs is unlike any other professor I’ve met, and his passion for geography (Trust me on this) conveyed how important all these seemingly mundane topics truly are." As a TA for GEOG 20 a while back, I can confirm everything Anthony said is true.

Idaho State University: ISU to Celebrate Arbor Day with online ISU Campus Tree Tour - "Coronavirus be darned – Idaho State University is celebrating Arbor Day in style with the release of a new online ISU Campus Tree Tour, following the recognition that University was designated a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation earlier this spring."

UDaily: Earth Day mapathon - Students in the Epsilon Eta professional coed environmental fraternity invited the UD community to join its members for a humanitarian mapathon yesterday.

USGIF: USGIF Announces 2020 Achievement Award Winners - In the academic category the winner was the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, Middlebury Institute in Monterey, CA.  "Using new technological opportunities offered by high-cadence moderate resolution satellite imagery and flexible high-resolution satellite image tasking provided by Planet Labs, analysts at the CNS, through the use of open-source GEOINT, detected and correctly identified preparations for the engine test 39 hours before it occurred. "

Teaching Remotely

The Adirondack Daily Enterprise: Bringing outdoors education online - Melanie Johnson, who teaches geographic information systems at Paul Smith's College details the challenges of providing student access to software.

Western Illinois University News: WIU Professor Runs Lectures, Labs from his Home While Helping Design State's COVID Dashboard - University Professor Chris Sutton is teaching from home. "I have an advantage over many of my colleagues in that my lab exercises involve GIS and mapping, which require computers rather than specialized equipment."

GeoLearn Update

Way back in 2014 Joe Paiva, known to many as a contributor to POB, started  an online platform, GeoLearn, for surveyors to gain continuing education credit. Each one hour "course" costs $49. As of now the platform hosts nearly 70 courses. I recently learned that Xyht, another surveying publication, now offers a podcast and the recent episode featured a conversation between current editor Gavin Schrock and Paiva. Paiva was frank that the platform did not explode in the early years.

In the podcast Paiva suggests his platform may be ready to pick up some new users during the current COVID-19 pandemic. The content looks about same as it did at launch. In the meantime online students have become more savvy, expecting quite a lot from their online experience.

Paiva said on the podcast that he would give away "100% off" coupons for those interested in testing out his courses. Hit him up via e-mail, noted in the link above, to request one. And, if you do complete the course, let me know about your experience.


Twitter: Atanas Entchev offers: "Education is knowing what to do when you don't know." Agree? Do you have your definition?

USGIF: USGIF Announces 2020 Stu Shea Endowed Scholarship Recipient - USGIF selected Wendy L. Zeller Zigaitis as the recipient of the Foundation’s Stu Shea USGIF Endowed Scholarship. Zigaitis is a previous and current student at Pennsylvania State University pursuing her Ph.D. in geography. She worked at NGA for 20 years in between!

The Dartmouth: Two professors receive Guggenheim Fellowships - Geography professor Frank Magilligan credited Charlotte Bacon, director of Dartmouth’s grant proposal support initiative, with helping him rewrite his proposal after previous proposals were rejected. Apparently he was successful in crafting the update “in a way that would resonate” in a more humanities-focused fellowship competition. Magilligan will study the social and political consequences of dam removal.

George Mason: Burtch receives grant to create open lab manual for quantitative methods in geography - "Nathan Burtch, Assistant Professor and Undergraduate Coordinator, Geography and Geoinformation Science, is creating an open laboratory manual for quantitative methods courses in geography." The $11,100 from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia run until June 2022.

Twitter: Nick Santos is changing jobs, but staying at UC and staying in water. GIS students will be thrilled to hear he will continue to teach online at UC Davis and at Coursera. Best of luck Nick!

CCST: Taking my Remote Sensing Research to the California State Capitol: My Experience at the 2020 CCST Science Translators Showcase - Krista West is a first-year San Diego State University/University of California, Santa Barbara Joint Doctoral Program (SDSU/UCSB JDP) student. She was a participant of CCST’s Science Translators Showcase on February 5, 2020, part of CCST Science & Technology Week. As I understand it, the event helps student researchers practice communicating science.

The News: University of Portsmouth students are aiming to run 10,000km in seven days to support NHS - Geography student and netball team committee member, Eleanor Smith, 21, started the effort to "one up" student athletes at the University of Southampton. Sadly, there's no information about using geographic tools to track the miles students run in their neighborhoods now that they are home to shelter in place.

ASU Now: Geography Dean's Medalist mapped her own path at ASU - "Amy Berry is an avid learner. Entering Arizona State University as a freshman with 50-plus college credits, Berry utilized her academic flexibility to explore different courses and majors until she found the right fit for her: geography." "Her advice to other students: Don’t be afraid to venture outside of the box." 

COVID-19 Mapping

Times Gazette: Students develop coronavirus app for Invention Convention competition times-gazette.com "After watching Gov. Mike DeWine and Dr. Amy Acton's daily news conferences, two Ashland Christian School students decided a tracking app might help identify who's at risk for COVID-19." The fifth and sixth grade brothers from the Ohio school have competed in similar efforts in the past. Via Esri.

Princeton: Princeton researchers map rural U.S. counties most vulnerable to COVID-19 - "A county-by-county analysis of the United States by Princeton University researchers suggests that rural counties with high populations of people over 60 and limited access to health care facilities could eventually be among the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) that has so far killed more than 100,000 people worldwide."

WUSA9: Maryland's coronavirus ZIP code map may be having unintended consequences, officials warn - "In hard-hit Prince George's County, people may be using the ZIP code maps to make bad decisions about where to shop or go to the pharmacy."

OSU - The Lantern: Student creates online map of COVID-19 cases across Ohio - "Though the site is free to visit, Rehman said it accepts donations for hosting fees and paid technologies to improve the site going forward. The team is also looking for more volunteers to help with interface design and publicity."

The Verge: A new map shows that you can’t maintain social distancing on many New York City sidewalks - Two datasets, one crowdsourced and one from the city, suggest the Big Apple is not a place for six foot social distancing.