The content of this page are designed to encourage and
support two distinct but related things:
IT-Using Geographic Educators
IT is now a routine tool of
geographers and has contributed to substantial
changes in this field.
- The appropriate integration of IT into the everyday
fabric of Geography curriculum, instruction, and
- The development of a community of IT in Geography
educators who are mutually supportive. This community
will include preservice, inservice, and retired
educators, and other volunteers.
Join the Oregon IT in
Geographic Education E-mail Distribution List
is an interactive E-mail distribution list (anybody can
join, anybody can post) in Geographic Education.
To join the Geographic Education
list and the general OTEC list, send an E-mail message
In the body of the message (NOT in
the subject line) enter the text:
After you join the or-it-geoed
E-mail Distribution List, send a message to the list talking
about some of the good things you are doing and/or are aware
of uses of IT in Geographic Education. If you are aware of
really good websites that Oregon IT-Using Geographic
teachers might find useful, share this
Note: A Google search using the term GIS Oregon
produces a large number of GIS references to activities in
Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies
[Online]. Accessed 6/2/01/: http://www.cast.uark.edu/local/hunt/.
A guide to mostly on-line and mostly free U.S.
geospatial and attribute data. Includes a link to EPA
Region 10 Public Access Data Library (Alaska, Idaho,
Oregon, and Washington).
Geographic Information Science @ Oregon State University
[Online]. Accessed 6/2/01: http://terra.geo.orst.edu/ucgis/.
This web site describes GIS facilities,
research, faculty, and education at Oregon State
University, Corvallis, Oregon.
Digitized Maps [Online]. Accessed 3/15/02:
Quoting from the Website:
When David Rumsey decided to take his private
collection of 19th and 20th century maps public, even the
world's largest library wanted to take part in the
But, rather than donate his vast collection of 150,000
maps to the Library of Congress, Rumsey decided to put it
online. "With (some) institutions, the access you can get
is not nearly as much as the Internet might provide,"
said Rumsey, president of Cartography Associates. "I
realized I could reach a much larger audience with the
The result is an extraordinary compilation of more
than 6,500 high-resolution digital images from one of the
largest private collections in the United States.
In 1997, Rumsey partnered with Luna Imaging to
digitize his collection and allow users to search, zoom,
pan and print these age-old maps.
But merely posting images online wasn't enough; Rumsey
wanted to give users an unparalleled experience in the
physical world of cartography.
So last year, Rumsey introduced a GIS<
(Geographical Information System) browser, using
visualization software developed by Telemorphic.
With the GIS browser, users can overlay multiple maps
from different time periods with current geospatial data,
like roads, lakes, parks, aerial photos and satellite
imagery. They can also create, save and print their own
custom maps to trace changes in a geographic area's
history, population or culture.
"(GIS) changes the way that people experience old maps
by letting them compare (these maps) to modern data,"
Rumsey said. "This will bring both historical information
into the world of GIS and it will also bring the art of
old maps into the world of GIS."
Rumsey is the first collector to make GIS freely
available to people through the Internet. That effort is
part of his plan to "keep access open and free" to his
Rumsey uses a digital camera to scan three-dimensional
items such as atlases, globes and books. Images are
scanned at a high resolution of at least 300 pixels per
inch, with some extremely detailed maps scanned at 600
pixels per inch "to give a sense of the texture of
Scanned images undergo a technique called
rectification or "rubber sheeting," whereby an image from
an old map is warped to fit another image with more
accurate, modern geospatial data. It takes approximately
three hours to rubber sheet each individual map.
Cartographers, GIS professionals, historians and map
enthusiasts can use this data to pinpoint a particular
address, find out how towns were populated, how railroads
evolved or how European explorers discovered the American
The GIS browser allows users to compare 11 different
historic maps from Rumsey's collection with aerial photos
to see how the San Francisco Bay area changed from 1851
to 1926. Geographers can trace changes in the San
Francisco coastline over the past century to determine
what parts of the city are subject to liquefaction and
Maps and Interactive Geography Tools [Online].
Accessed 12/6/00: http://garnet.acns.fsu.edu/~phensel/maps.html.
Provides links to a large number of excellent
National Geographic Society: Geography Action
[Online]. Accessed 11/6/01: http://www.nationalgeographic.com/geographyaction/.
Quoting from the Website:
Geography Action! You're invited to take part in
Geography Action!, an annual conservation and awareness
program designed to educate and excite people about our
natural, cultural, and historic treasures. Join the
National Geographic Society in protecting our greatest
resource--the Earth--by "taking action" with hands-on
conservation activities. Geography Action! starts each
spring, and culminates during Geography Awareness Week,
in November, when the results of how people "took action"
will be posted online. To view past Geography Action!
activities, visit our archive.
Geography Action! Rivers 2001 This year Geography
Action! highlights rivers. People and rivers are
connected on many levels. Rivers provide our drinking
water, nourish our agriculture, and support many
endangered species. When we use rivers, we alter the
course and balance of river systems, and threaten the
future of one of our most important natural resources.
Take action for rivers today, for the sake of the future.
Then celebrate rivers during Geography Awareness Week,
NE Oregon GIS User's Group [Online]. Accessed
Quoting from the Website:
Mission: Networking with the goal of maintaining
enthusiasm in the NE Oregon GIS community.
Oregon Department of Forestry Management Districts
[Online]. Accessed 6/2/02: http://www.odf.state.or.us/StateForests/sfgis/.
Oregon Department of Forestry state forests, GIS
data, and tools.
Oregon Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI)
Statewide Site License [Online]. Accessed 12/3/00:
See also: Accessed 12/3/00: http://geography.uoregon.edu/gis/
The following information was added to the OTEC Website on
Many of you have heard about the
idea of geographic information systems. These software
systems represent a superb blending of computer
capability with a number of different fields that make
use of maps and information related to the locations
of the maps. (Think of carrying the power of
spreadsheets into anything that can be mapped in two
or three dimensions. Thus, such a map might show the
environment, natural resources, people, buildings, and
transportation systems in a region, and be used to
study their interactions.)
An Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI)
site license allows unlimited access to all ESRI
software (ArcInfo, ArcView and others) to all faculty,
students and staff at these participating
Oregon University System
- Eastern Oregon University
- Oregon Health Sciences University
- Oregon Institute of Technology
- Oregon State University
- Portland State University
- Southern Oregon University
- University of Oregon
- Western Oregon University
- Blue Mountain Community College
- Central Oregon Community College
- Chemeketa Community College
- Lane Community College
- Mount Hood Community College
- Portland Area Community College
- Southwest Community College
- Tillamook Community College
- Treasure Valley Community College
The University of Oregon took the lead on
organizing an ESRI licensing agreement with the Oregon
University System. The actual agreement is between the
Oregon Educational Technology Consortium (OETC;
http://www.oetc.org/) and ESRI.
Oregon Geographic Alliance (OGA) [Online].
Accessed 11/6/01: http://geogres.pdx.edu/oga/index.html.
Quoting from the Website:
- To increase public awareness of the importance of
- To increase the emphasis on geography in grades
- To improve geographic teaching methods and
Oregon Geospatial Data Clearinghouse (OGDC)
[Online]. Accessed 6/2/01/: http://www.sscgis.state.or.us/.
Quoting from the Website:
WELCOME to the Oregon Geospatial Data
Clearinghouse (OGDC), formerly known as the State Service
Center for GIS. The OGDC helps to coordinate GIS
activities in the state, facilitates communication about
GIS issues, and maintains the Website that hosts spatial
data shared by Oregon state agencies. The clearinghouse
is funded, in part, through an assessment from state
agencies. It also operates as an enterprise fund and
provides data transfers and plotting services on a fee
Schmieder, Allen (2/9/01). IT
in Geography Education at Precollege and Higher
Education Levels. <firstname.lastname@example.org> . Contents
of an email message that provides an excellent overview of
integration of IT into geography education.
University Consortium of Geographic Information Science
(UCGIS) [Online]. Accessed 6/2/01: http://www.ucgis.org/.
Quoting from the Website:
The University Consortium for Geographic
Information Science (UCGIS) is a non-profit organization
of universities and other research institutions dedicated
to advancing our understanding of geographic processes
and spatial relationships through improved theory,
methods, technology, and data.
IT in Geography
Schmieder, Allen (2/9/01). IT in Geography Education at
Precollege and Higher Education Levels.
The following is the text of an email message from Allen
Schmeider that was sent to the PTTT email distribution list
on 2/9/01 and is reproduced here with his permission. It
provides excellent insights on the appropriate roles of
integration of IT into geography education.
Gary, I have been working on/presenting on "The
Status of Technology in the Nation's Schools," and the
"Millennium School," for several years now and feel that
the overlap between schools and colleges is substantial.
One of the main differences in higher education is that
you do have some very cutting edge technology being used
in the non-education departments in the university. I,
for example was a geography professor before joining the
Federal government and geographers are among the leaders
in the use of technology (GIS, GPS, Multispec, Remote
Sensing, etc.) so ed students taking geography would
generally see the new technologies in use. One of your
focuses should be: "the implications of the use of
technology in non-education courses for preservice
education students!" Now to a quick list of several of
the barriers to the accelerated infusion of technology
into teacher education:
1. most schools in the nation still do not use
technology in mainstream management, instruction, and
assessment so there is little demand from them for
technology proficient teachers. Many talk about good
technology things happening in their schools, but
relatively, technology is not widely used in classrooms
teaching the core subjects. When the day comes that we
can randomly pick a school system, a day of the week, a
school, a time of day, a classroom, and find that
classroom instruction focused on
technology-supported-centered-web-based-etc. we will
truly have 21st century education.
2. most educators at all levels still do not realize
how wide the gap is (in the use of technology) between
society and education - nor believe that the situation
has become critical - the real digital divide is between
education and society - businesses without cutting edge
technology will soon be out of business. in education,
they stay in business but their students suffer!
3. educators need to realize that they do not have to
become programmers or even experts in power point - they
need to wade in and begin to learn some new things - they
need to become advocates for the use of technology -
research says it takes five years to become fascile with
the technology (we need to shorten that to two or three
years - and I have some ideas - as do others- for how to
4. possibly the biggest barrier is the belief that we
will only move the technology in when we can prove that
it increases achievement in the core subjects. this is
currently not really possible since the cutting edges of
the core subjects have been transformed by the new
technologies - and we don't have assessment instruments
for measuring the use of the new technologies - the new
approaches to accessing knowledge and problem solving
using the new technologies - we seem bent on using
nineteenth century measures for 21st century education.
The sooner we get the technology into schools and
education programs the sooner we will begin to close the
digital divide. Our first measure of success should be
related to how fast we get the technology into colleges
and classrooms! Mandated infusion in Dakota State and
some other places accelerated their using it in the
classrooms. I firmly believe that professors who will not
use it, should take sabbaticals and work in the real
world for a year - they will return and be technology
5. another barrier is the belief that the new
technologies are expensive. generally they are not - and
the prices continue to fall as the use expands - good
desktops can be had (in bulk) for $500 - laptops have
dropped to close to $1,000 - palm pilots are down to $200
- GPS dropped from $1500 to $50 in the last five years -
etc. etc. Moore's Law is still working!
6. Another barrier is the belief that the new
technologies decrease the human element in classrooms -
the opposite is true - they force the use of multiple
approaches to teaching and learning - individualization
is more possible, group/team approaches are more commong,
homework on handheld digital devices are synchronized
into classroom computers and projected onto large screens
- lectures can be shared across hundreds of miles, etc.
etc. We finally have the capacity to individualize and
use a myriad of approaches to teaching complex concepts -
IN FACT TO ENABLE STUDENTS TO NOT ONLY BETTER LEARN
THINGS BUT TO HELP CREATE NEW KNOWLEDGE AND NEW
APPROACHES TO LEARNING.
7. Another barrier is the continued (for almost 20
years now) separation of MIS and Instructional Technology
staff when they should be on the same team and working
closely together - management, instruction, and
assessment infusion should be planned and implemented
using the tenants of research on educational change: all
the key players work together from A to Z to put the best
possible system in place.
8. A big barrier in schools that is creeping into
colleges is the notion that those few internal people who
have taken the lead in learning about and patching the
technology together the best way they can are best suited
to take the lead in designing, developing and
implementing the kind of robust, scaleable, feasible
technology infrastructure needed for a first class
college/university system is way off the mark. (I have a
bias because I now work for one of the nation's best
known infrastructure companies which has focused
exclusively on education for over ten years now) There
are a growing number of businesses that are real experts
- have installed hundreds, if not thousands of
sophisticated networks, that need to be used to provide
21st century infrastructures. If you had a serious
medical problem, would you go to your local GP or the
Mayo Clinic. Universities are the epitome of the notion
that their scholars are the best experts in their fields
- why wouldn't such people demand that the infrastructure
that will help them continue to be the best in their
fields be designed, installed, and supported by the best
experts in the nation?
There are others but most readers may have already
tuned me out. So let me conclude by saying that I firmly
believe that unless we rapidly and effectively infuse the
best of the cutting edges of technology into schools and
colleges of education the nation will be at risk far more
than it was when that famous book was written in l984. At
least our kids will be at risk.
It is also important to add that the new
administration is going to make things far worse with
their determination to move the few cutting
edge/reform/research programs in the use of technology
into the states--where there is essentially no visionary
leadership in the use of technology. One of the few hopes
we will have if the administration succeeds, is that
colleges and universities will step up to the plate and
get on board with technology and provide the kind of
leadership for their states that state education agencies
are (at least currently) unprepared to provide.
cheers - allen schmieder
-----Original Message----- From: Rutkin, Gary
[mailto:Gary_Rutkin@ed.gov] Sent: Thursday,
February 08, 2001 4:03 PM To: 'email@example.com' Subject:
pt3-list Institutional reform: your opinions needed
We need your opinions -- can you help us?
The PT3 program is taking a close look at the factors
that foster or impede adoption of technology-infused
learning in higher education programs in general,
especially as they relate to teacher preparation. We know
that, to make a difference in teacher education, changes
must be made in the Arts and Sciences programs in which
future teachers receive much of their education.
In the coming weeks we'll be asking for your opinions
on a number of change-related issues. We hope you'll
share your thoughts and comment on others' opinions
through this listserv.
The first issue: What do you think are the greatest
barriers to change in teacher preparation? Do you see
technological change as a separate issue, or is this part
of the larger challenge?
Your participation in this discussion will help us
develop a strategy and targeted outreach communications
plan that we hope will help encourage systemic reform in
teacher preparation programs and their appropriate
Findings of this research will be announced at the PT3
Grantees' Meeting in August. We plan to use this
discussion as the basis for specific presentations and
activities at the PT3 Grantees' Meeting in August.
If you'd prefer to comment privately, please send in
e-mail to Michele Lowe at firstname.lastname@example.org. Many
thanks, in advance, for your participation.