Eastern Michigan University
Department of Geography and Geology
Chris Mayda, Associate Professor
217 Strong Hall
Ypsilanti, MI 48197
Eastern Michigan University (EMU) offers a fully online graduate certificate in geographic information systems (GIS) for educators. The certificate addresses classroom concerns and implementation of GIS and adapts teaching methods to include GIS in K–12 classroom curriculums. The program has been written for K–12 teachers specifically with a focus on what teachers need to know in GIS to include this exciting application in their classroom activity. If you later decide to pursue a full degree, all the credits you earn with the certificate can be applied toward a master’s degree in earth science education at EMU.
Through EMU-Online, you can learn virtually anywhere, anytime and take advantage of our online registration, discussions, homework, examinations, and guaranteed technical support within a day of a request being posted. Out-of-state students can also take all EMU-Online courses at in-state tuition rates.
GEOG 520: GIS Introduction for Educators (3)
GEOG 522: Internet GIS Resources for Educators (3)
GEOG 524: GIS as an Instructional Tool in Classrooms (3)
GEOG 667: School GIS Projects and Lesson Plan Development (3)
TOTAL UNITS: 12
Description of Courses
GIS Introduction for Educators
This course is intended as an introductory GIS course for educators with some computer experience but no previous GIS experience. The course is designed to open up the world of geographic information systems to professional educators. The course will include readings and online discussions followed by hands-on exercises.
This course is focused on GIS as a tool that can be used in the classroom as well as in administration. It provides an overview of GIS, practical applications in GIS, and readings designed to help you understand how to apply it to the everyday primary, secondary, community college, vocational, and university classroom.
Internet GIS Resources for Educators
This course is intended as a geographic information systems course for educators with GIS online experience. The course is designed to provide practical, hands-on skill building and curricular considerations for professional educators. The course will use a desktop GIS software package (ArcView 3 or 9 by Esri) to investigate phenomena as diverse as population, climate, political geography, and plate tectonics, but all with a focus on spatial thinking and analysis. This course will provide opportunities to download data from the Internet to extend the life of the existing lessons. The course also uses projects written by others to aim at projects modified and written by you, the educator.
GIS as an Instructional Tool in Classrooms
This course is intended as an intermediate geographic information systems course for educators with some computer experience. The course is designed to deepen practical, hands-on skills and build on thought processes necessary for professional educators to make curricular connections. The course will use a desktop GIS software package (ArcView 3 or 9 by Esri) to build such skills as point-on-polygon, spatial querying, attribute querying, digitizing spatial features, address geocoding, creating graphs, creating layouts, exporting GIS to presentation and word processing software, registering imagery, overlay, proximity, and map projections. All these skills will be built with a goal of enhancing spatial thinking and geographic analysis in a pedagogical framework.
School GIS Projects and Lesson Plan Development
The course is focused on using State and National Benchmarks (standards) to plan, research, and implement GIS lessons in a K–16 setting. This class will be for you to take the GIS skills you have developed this past year to do a project to engage your students to do community service, research, or action. The project will be of your design, so choose something that interests you. We hope that it will be something that can be used with your students in your field of expertise. This may be something that future classes of students can be engaged in or, as with any research, may only be the start of a path to other interesting community issues.
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