Geoscience Research and Education: University Teaching

This page last updated 31 Mar 2020 - 1:27pm

Geoscience Research and Outreach: Schools and Public Engagement

This page last updated 31 Mar 2020 - 1:26pm

When there isn't a right answer: Interpretation and reasoning, key skills for twenty‐first century geoscience

A key challenge in university geoscience teaching is to give students the skills to cope with uncertainty. Professional geoscientists can rarely be certain of the ‘right answer’ to problems posed by most geological datasets, and reasoning through this uncertainty, being intelligently flexible in interpreting data which are limited in resolution and spatial distribution, is an important skill for students to learn.

This page last updated 31 Mar 2020 - 1:12pm

Nurturing Diversity in STEM Fields Through Geography: The Past, the Present and the Future

The authors discus the role geographic perspectives can play in creating access for participation in STEM. A case study highlighted in the article presents practical initiatives such as job and career networking,  as an avenue for nurturing diversity and encouraging instructors to present spatial intelligence, visual analytics, mapping and critical thinking through creative and narrative stories.  Additionally connections are made between classroom learning and real-world applications of science theories. 

This page last updated 8 Aug 2019 - 1:27pm

Impact of inclusive field trips

The geosciences benefit from diverse student perspectives and backgrounds, but the field-based learning requirements pose barriers to students with disabilities. If carefully designed, fieldwork can be made accessible while still meeting expectations of academic rigour.

This page last updated 20 May 2019 - 3:17pm

Technology, Accuracy and Scientific Thought in Field Camp: An Ethnographic Study

An ethnographic study was conducted on an undergraduate field course to observe and document lived experiences of students. This paper evaluates one of several emergent themes: that of technology dependence, and how it informs students’ understanding of scientific reality. In the field, students tried to arm themselves with as high a degree of precision as possible. They assumed that technology was equated with precision, and in turn, precision with scientific reality; i.e., accuracy.

This page last updated 20 May 2019 - 3:15pm

Ethnographic methods in analysis of place-based geoscience curriculum and pedagogy

Place-based education is locally situated, experiential, and transdisciplinary. It is informed not only by scientific knowledge of places and regions, but also by the humanistic meanings and affective attachments (senses of place) that people affix to them. Enhanced sense of place is an authentic learning outcome of place-based teaching. Qualitative analyses of a student’s behavior and attitudes in a place-based learning context can be used to triangulate instrument-driven psychometry of pre- to postexperience changes in sense of place and content knowledge.

This page last updated 20 May 2019 - 3:08pm

Student interpretation of a global elevation map: What it is, how it was made, and what it is useful for

Visual representations of scientific data make these data accessible and enable students to examine the evidence used to build scientific arguments and test theo- ries, even when the underlying data set is large or complicated. It is becoming more common in science education to use data visualizations based on data that students did not collect themselves. Teachers and instructional designers need to understand how students perceive and interpret such visualizations.

This page last updated 20 May 2019 - 3:05pm

A phenomenographic approach to investigating students’ conceptions of geoscience as an academic discipline

Phenomenography is an empirical approach to identifying the qualitatively dis- crete ways in which individuals experience and understand aspects of the world around them. Although established for several decades, the technique is seldom applied (if at all) in geoscience education research, yet it has the potential to significantly enhance undergraduate instruction. This paper presents an overview of phenomenographic inquiry in terms of its characteristic methods and applications to education research.

This page last updated 20 May 2019 - 3:02pm

Counting tectonic plates: A mixed-methods study of college students’ conceptions of plates and boundaries

We explored students’ conceptions of plate tectonics using a combined qualitative and quantitative approach consisting of multiple-choice ConcepTest questions, ques- tionnaires, and interviews. When shown schematic images illustrating plate tectonics, half of the students were unable to determine the correct number of tectonic plates.

This page last updated 19 May 2019 - 4:34pm


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