University Consortium for Geographic Information Science
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Blended Learning in a GIScience Course: Lynda and Sketch-based Geo-spatial Learning Objects
Monday, September 29, 2014
Category: Webinars

Blended learning and flipped classroom experiences are concepts that are being promoted to enhance student learning and student learning experiences. Especially for technology and method oriented courses the advantages are manifold: core concepts and techniques can be (pre-) digested by students at their own pace, at their own favorite time, and, if necessary, repeatedly. Valuable face-to-face time is freed-up for teachers in the classroom to engage students in discussions, pick-up and focus on conceptually difficult topics, and enhancing learning through repetition. The credo of flipped classroom experiences is “From the sage on the State to the Guide on the Side”. However, the cost of flipping classrooms can be high, especially if materials are intended to adhere to professional standards. Efforts and resources that leverage cost and time are therefore essential. Commercial products such as lectures offered through are an option for adding flipped classroom experience to existing courses with minimal additional resources in those cases where the topics match. In this presentation we will give an overview of how courses from are used to enhance the classroom experience in a spatial analysis course (Geog 464).
Additionally, to complement the students blended learning experience, we use the outcome of a COIL RIG funded project to convey concepts of spatial analysis to students in a non-traditonal way. To deliver dynamic content tailored to students’ needs and interest we have evaluated low-cost / free sketching tools. Sketching plays a central role in many spatial sciences (e.g., architecture) and spatial analysis is no exception. Based on the Body of Knowledge for Geographic Information Science and Systems, we have created sketch-based learning objects to complement students’ blended learning experience and also create a systematic collection of topics that other researchers can contribute to.

Presenter: Dr. Alexander Klippel is Associate Professor of Geography (GIScience) and directs the Human Factors in GIScience Lab at Penn State. He also holds an affiliate position at the Information Sciences & Technology Department. He has studied and worked in Germany, Australia, and the USA in Geography, Informatics, and Geomatics. His research interests center on multidisciplinary topics at the interface between spatial cognition and GIScience, especially the area of geographic event conceptualization and the integration of cognitive factors into formal characterizations of dynamic spatial processes. A second line of his research at Penn State is the interaction of people, environments, and mobile/static devices, i.e. location based services (LBS).

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