Journal of Geography in Higher Education

Volume 25 Number 2 2001


Constructing Engagement: geographical education for justice within and beyond tertiary classrooms

RICHARD HOWITT, Macquarie University, Australia

ABSTRACT
This paper reflects on experience as an educator, education bureaucrat, researcher and indigenous rights activist to frame significant challenges facing geographical education in the contemporary university and beyond. It argues that the process of constructing engagements between ‘students’ in diverse settings within and beyond the confines of the tertiary classroom and addressing the intellectual and practical consequences of ‘deep colonising’ of even quite progressive university programmes are critically important. Drawing on the work of Freire, Levinas, Rose and Derrida among others, the paper explores prospects for decolonising the geographical imagination that academic geography fosters.

KEYWORDS
Indigenous rights, social justice, geographical imagination, decolonisation, borderlands, polyphony, border pedagogy, other.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Constructing Gaia: using journals to foster reflective learning

MARTIN J. HAIGH, Oxford Brookes University, UK

ABSTRACT
Learning journals are used to help advanced-level undergraduate students construct a personal understanding of Gaia Theory. In this context, students like the journal technique and consider it appropriate to the course. They also agree that writing journals contributes to promoting subject learning, introspection and self-awareness of their own learning processes. For the instructor, the journals provide detailed insight into the development of student learning and students’ interactions with the other components of the curriculum. The journals highlight which instructional devices work, which have problems, who is affected and what learning strategies they adopt. They provide a better perspective on the extent of students’ reading and reflection than is obtainable from more formal scripts. The chief problem in the use of learning journals is their bulk and the time required for assessment and analysis. The journal technique has also helped demonstrate how the Gaia Theory may provide an appropriate curriculum for the practice of constructive learning. The unorthodox ideas and contradictions of Gaia Theory successfully challenge students to think deeply, critically and self-consciously about their prior understanding of the world.

KEYWORDS
Learning journals, physical geography teaching, Gaia, constructivism, course evaluation, General System Theory, learning theory.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Moving with the Times: an oral history of a geography department

ALAN JENKINS, Oxford Brookes University, UK
ANDREW WARD, Freelance Writer

ABSTRACT
The 30-year story of the geography department at Oxford Brookes University is presented as an oral history in the words of the experienced full-time staff. The department has gained a reputation in the UK and beyond for innovative active-learning methods and its story is an example of how a pedagogic culture can develop in a geography department. The story can also be read as a case study of a workplace in higher education, or as a contribution to the history of education. Most importantly, though, it offers insight into the key factors concerning the development of innovative teaching practice.

KEYWORDS
Oral history, geography, teaching, higher education, innovation, change, workplace culture.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Student Evaluation and Assessment of Group Projects

SARAH MAGUIRE, University of Ulster, Coleraine, UK
SALLY EDMONDSON, Liverpool Hope University College, UK

ABSTRACT
University teachers in the UK are increasingly being asked to develop skills, such as the ability to work effectively in groups, both by government and by employers. This paper outlines and evaluates, from a student perspective, the use of fieldwork projects to develop group-working skills. It also considers the use of self-assessment for summative purposes and the development of reflective practice or ‘learning to learn’ skills in students.

KEYWORDS
Student evaluation, group work, self-assessment, reflection.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


What’s the Big Deal? Resource and pedagogical implications of teaching geography to non-geographers

JOHN H. McKENDRICK, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, UK

ABSTRACT
This paper introduces the theme of ‘teaching geography to non-geographers’. It is set against the context of learning and teaching with the ‘Other’ in geography. At the outset a working definition of a ‘non-geographer’ is provided. The resource and pedagogical implications arising from teaching geography to non-geographers are then outlined. Finally, the contributions to this broader debate from the five case studies that comprise this JGHE symposium are summarised.

KEYWORDS
Teaching geography, geographical education, benchmarking, geography departments, geography students, Othering.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Problems and Possibilities of Delivering ‘Footloose’ Geography: the case for space

ALISON McCLEERY, Napier University, Edinburgh, UK

ABSTRACT
Within the UK Higher Education system, geography is sometimes taught outside the framework of a conventional geography degree programme. Using a case study of the situation at Napier University, Edinburgh, this paper explores the problems and possibilities of delivering ‘footloose’ geography within a broadly, but not exclusively, social science context.

KEYWORDS
‘Footloose’ geography, human geography, social science, geography and ‘non-geographers ’, regional geography, geography of the commonplace.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Teaching Geography to Non-traditional Students: inducting, nurturing and retaining them

SARAH MAGUIRE, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Northern Ireland, UK

ABSTRACT
The Department of Environmental and Biological Studies at Liverpool Hope University College recruits an above-average number of students who could be classified as ‘non-traditional’. Many are mature and many have gained entry to higher education via routes other than A level. In addition, and increasingly, many have selected or been allocated to the first-year geography modules with little or no experience of geography education. These students undertake a carefully structured programme of small-group teaching, designed to induct and train them in the practices of higher education and through which they are introduced to key geographical concepts. This paper highlights some of the issues arising from teaching non-traditional students and identifies as case studies elements of the programme, which support the development of students’ skills and geographical understanding.

KEYWORDS
Non-traditional students, nurture, student retention.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


From the Holiday to the Academy: implications for physical geography in higher education arising from ‘popular’ field-based geography in Dorset

ELEANOR ROCKSBOROUGH SMITH, University of Durham, UK

ABSTRACT
The popularity of physical geography at all levels of formal education is declining. This paper argues that a key factor in the decline may be the disparity between geographies studied within formal education and the popular geographies encountered during leisure pursuit. Through the example of the Jurassic Coast Project, an initiative for the interpretation of Dorset’s coastal landscape, approaches towards the integration of popular and academic geographies are explored. Drawing explicit links between popular experiences and academic knowledge may benefit physical geography, improving its status amongst public and student audiences, and addressing the concerns that surround its decline within higher education.

KEYWORDS
Popular geography, educational tourism, Dorset, fieldwork, recruitment to higher education.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Teaching Geography to Non-geographers at Glasgow Caledonian University

JOHN H. MCKENDRICK & ELIZABETH MOONEY, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, UK

ABSTRACT
This paper discusses the teaching of geography to ‘non-geographers ’ at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU). GCU is one of the so-called ‘new’ universities in the UK and it shares with many of these institutions a mission to facilitate access to groups that have traditionally been under-represented in higher education. Human geography is one of the six subject area streams within the interdisciplinary social sciences degree programme, although geographical subject matter is taught in many other degree programmes, in each of GCU’s three faculties. The arrangements for teaching human geography at GCU present pedagogical challenges for staff. Means to address these problems have been implemented. In this case study, it is argued that the experience of teaching human geography to ‘non-geographers ’ at GCU may be of more general significance to the discipline, to the teaching of geography in both ‘old’ and ‘new’ universities and to those responsible for the delivery of mainstream geography degree programmes.

KEYWORDS
Teaching geography, geographical education, geography departments, Glasgow Caledonian University, new universities.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


The Non-Geographer: overlooked but not forgotten

STUART SEMPLE, Dalhousie University & Mount Allison University, Canada

ABSTRACT
This paper is concerned with epistemological and attitudinal problems encountered in communicating geographical concepts to non-geographers . It reflects a Canadian context and offers a case study of a group of non-geographer s whose special needs are often overlooked: the teachers of social studies. An inductive approach, using systematic geography only as required in order to understand a case study, is found to be effective in building bridges for those new to the subject. The choice of sequence should be from the empirical to the theoretical, in which fieldwork fulfils a point of entry for non-geographers.

KEYWORDS
Geography teaching, fieldwork, inductive approach, social studies students.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


Teaching Geography to Non-geographers: the way forward?

JOHN H. McKENDRICK, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, UK

ABSTRACT
This paper reflects upon the five case studies that comprise the collection on the theme of ‘teaching geography to non-geographers ’. Key themes are discussed and an agenda for pedagogic research is outlined.

KEYWORDS
Teaching geography, geographical education, benchmarking, geography departments, geography students.

* 2001 Index

*Journal of Geography in Higher Education Cumulative Index


The Geography Discipline Network would also like to thank Taylor & Francis Ltd for permission to reproduce abstracts from the Journal of Geography in Higher Education

For a copy of the full text article, please connect to
http://www.catchword.co.uk/titles/03098265.htm

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