Assessing Faculty Professional Development in GIS: The T3G Institutes

Authors: Michael DeMers*, New Mexico State University, Joseph Kerski*, Esri
Topics: Careers and professional development, Geography Education, Geographic Information Science and Systems
Keywords: GIS Professional Development, GIS Training, GIS Education
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Studio 3, Marriott, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

What are the best practices for conducting professional development in spatial thinking and geotechnologies for educators? From 2009 to 2016, the Esri Teachers Teaching Teachers GIS (T3G) program created a community of 450 educators who were given a week of face-to-face training together with ongoing professional development. The evolution of the annual T3G institutes over those eight years reflects the evolution of best practices in methods and also reflects the evolution of GIS technology itself. These include migration from desktop to cloud-based platforms, from dedicated laboratories to the bring-your-own-device model, the movement to shorter, more focused lessons, and an ongoing engagement with the ephemeral nature of GIS-based curricula. Key to the success of T3G has been its focus on pedagogical strategies for spatial thinking in education while not neglecting technical aspects of geospatial data, tools, and analysis. The T3G community reflects the interdisciplinary and multi-level nature of GIS instruction today, as it includes primary, secondary, community college, university, and informal educators from geography as well as mathematics, environmental studies, library science, history, language arts, and other disciplines. This presentation assesses the effectiveness of the T3G institute through an international survey and invites attendees to participate in a discussion about how the community of GIS educators can best move forward to meet the needs of fellow educators and of students.

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