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Well with 150 plus Y12 students studying A Level Geography at Hills Road Sixth Form College, the NEA has caused plenty of discussion and lots of thought around how the students can do this independently. So far our introductory lessons on ethical research, primary and secondary sources have gone well and we created our own internal proforma for the project approval of title, which students submitted last week.
To keep track of work on the project all our students are using a OneDrive folder shared with their NEA teacher to upload their files, such as their bibliography and project proposal onto. Students have been excellent at working on different specification areas to identify geographical areas of research that they could use to generate titles. We worked initially in small groups brainstorming titles from topic ‘placemats’ which we developed which are just like topic mind maps. The next stage was how to direct students to suitable geographical research and we created homework activity that enabled them to use JSTOR, Google scholar and our Geography Review online archive to find relevant Geographical research to provide the necessary link to current research and theory. We also collated online resource articles onto Padlets which look really pretty but the jury’s still out on how effective they were – it’s a challenge to increase the curiosity of students!
We are interested that, so far, the majority of our students have plumped for human projects linked to inequalities within places, place perception, attachment and time space compression. Very soon the year group are going out and about to collect data with the Survey123 app in Cambridge - we have set up a day of fieldwork for them to trial the geospatial data collection methods and to then present using ESRI's ArcGIS online. We have been really grateful for Jason Sawle’s (ESRI Education Consultant) help with this. Our goal with this day is to model how to set up a survey, collect relevant data using Survey123 (which is geo-located) and then both display and process this data using basic statistical techniques. It’s been a busy 2017 and there are still plenty of questions we have…
Julia M Thomson, Head of Geography and Geology, Hills Road Sixth Form