Authors: Michael DeMers*, New Mexico State University, Joseph J. Kerski, Esri
Topics: Geography Education, Geographic Information Science and Systems
Keywords: GIS, GIS education, professional development, spatial thinking.
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Start / End Time: 11:10 AM / 12:25 PM
Room: Virtual 36
Presentation File: No File Uploaded
The authors assessed eight years of a national professional development institute focused on providing geographic information systems (GIS) teaching and technical skills for educators, titled Teachers Teaching Teachers GIS (T3G). Through a survey (N ¼ 276 [out of a total population of 450]), the authors determined that the institute generally met its goals of equipping educators so that they could (1) teach GIS concepts and skills for their peers, (2) create GIS-based curricula, and (3) communicate the value of GIS to other disciplines. Over the eight years that the institute ran in a face-to-face format, the institute reflected broad changes in GIS technology and methods, including the transition from desktop to Web-based GIS and the movement to shorter lessons. Our study also revealed challenges and benefits of this model of professional and broader issues of adoption of GIS in primary, secondary, university, and informal areas of education. These revelations allowed us to expose and evaluate strategies to advance the implementation and effectiveness of the use of GIS in instruction. We further suggest that research of this kind, particularly where a baseline of participants' level of teaching with GIS prior to such institutes can be established, would give even greater insight into the effectiveness of different types of professional development institutes and method employed in such institutes.