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Geo-Spatial Technologies for Indiana Educators and Students


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Indiana Story Map Competition Grades 4-12


What are Geo-Spatial Technologies?

Photo of Purdue GIS Day participants from a newly launched weather balloon; the balloon was tracked via GPS through Columbus, OH and reached an altitude of 74,000 feet. This balloon captured altitude and windspeed data. Sponsored by the Association of Mechanical and Electrical Technologists ... all for the fun of learning! Watch videos about the AMET balloon launches.

Introduction to GeoSpatial Technologies: Tutorials, OnLine Inter-Actives, Lesson Plans connected to Indiana Academic Standards ... land use change and water/drought for high school and natural hazards for middle school

Mapping Indiana's Bicentennial: Creating Giant County Maps & Timelines become part of your county efforts in creating a legacy resource, improving geographic literacy, and connecting two traditional teaching tools to 21st century technologies

Geo-spatial technologies are the twenty-first century mechanisms for more rapidly obtaining, managing and utilizing data to solve problems from a geographic, or spatial, perspective.

•Historically, obtaining data took much time:  coastal mapping with compass and sextants, sailing ships, paper and pen; walking the Santa Fe Trail with paper, pen and journal; economic/resource mapping by foot, horse, camel, elephant, or ship and more. All of these methods took significant amounts of time.  And the information was available on the one piece of paper (or copied to a few other papers).  The information could not easily be obtained.  Each time an individual or organization needed to collect information (population, natural resources, agriculture, habitat, climate, economic goods and products, best trade routes…) they would need to go into the field and gather the information (provided they did not have access to the original information).  Soon, though, several organizations began to create a collection of information (United States Coastal Survey) that could be catalogued at a library or museum or office.  But the information could not be readily obtained by everyone.

•Geo-spatial technology tools or mechanisms include topographic maps, compasses, GPS (global positioning systems), GIS (geographic information systems) software, orthophotography (aerial photography), satellite imagery and remote sensing (reading the satellite image based on the visual and non-visual light spectrum). Lots of resource possibilities exist. Students can understand the technology tool concepts without necessarily utilizing the tools; although for better understanding and applications, utilizing the tools is desired.

•In the past twenty years or so, new technologies have made the collection and sharing of information (data) more permanent.  With the advent of GPS (global positioning systems), exact locations of data on the Earth’s surface can be collected and permanently stored.  The stored data can be accessed and utilized by almost everyone through software designed to utilize the data (GIS – geographic information systems). GPS tools and GIS software are fairly easy to use and are a fun way to open the world to students in their own 21st century technology window!

A quick PPT demonstrating the relationship between various geo-spatial technologies (as listed in the left-hand column - orienteering, GPS, orthophotography, satellite/remote sensing, GIS) moving from a two-dimensional technology tool to a multi-dimensional tool. A short PPT for Geo-Spatial Technologies in the K-12 Classroom; long PPT GeoSpatial Technologies in the K-12 Classroom.

Another PPT presentation about 21st century Geography & Science.

The 2016 Purdue GIS Day for High School Students PPT.

The webinar PPT, spring of 2015, Geospatial Data, Skills & Technologies in the High School.

IGIC 2015 Indiana GIS Professional Employment Survey... for geospatial-related jobs in Indiana depicts types of jobs by sectors, salary ranges, education/background, software use...and much more. (2010 IGIC Salary Survey)

View a short video about the GeoSpatial Revolution Project, where the location of anything is becoming everything! http://geospatialrevolution.psu.edu/ This is an excellent visual about the value of geography and geospatial technologies.

For an archived chat with the creators of GeoSpatial Revolution Project from June 16, 2010.

National Geospatial Data Act, S.740 2015/S.1253 2017/H.R.3522 2017, ISSUES in the 2017 legislation as noted by the University Consortium of Geographic Information Science (UCGIS)

National Geographic Education Foundation