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The development of a computer based modelling environment for upper secondary school geography classes.

Goble, Terence Melvin.; (1994) The development of a computer based modelling environment for upper secondary school geography classes. Doctoral thesis , Institute of Education, University of London. Green open access

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Abstract

This thesis describes the development of a specification for a computer based modelling system in geography. The modelling system will be for use in upper secondary school geography classes. The classroom approach to geography reflects the developments within the broader academic discipline. By adopting a systems analysis approach, it is possible to represent models on the computer, from the full range of geographical approaches. The essence of geographical modelling is to be able to use a computer based environment to manipulate, and create, the inter-relationships of the components of a geographical system. The development of the specification for the modelling system, follows an eleven step methodology. This has been adapted and modified from the Research and Development Methodology. It includes a formative evaluation of the prototypes in classroom trials. The possible forms of representation of geographical ideas on the computer are considered. Procedural and declarative models are developed, as prototypes, on a range of software tools. The software tools used, for the initial developments, are the Dynamic Modelling System, spreadsheets and the language, Prolog. The final prototype is developed in a Smalltalk environment. Consideration is also given to the use of both quantitative and qualitative methods of modelling. Model templates are identified which give an underlying structure to a range of geographical models. These templates allow the students to build new models for different geographical areas. Proposals are made for a staged approach which addresses the introduction and use of modelling in the geography classroom. These stages move through the use of simulation, through the modification of the underlying model, to the transfer of the model template to different areas and finally, the building of new models.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The development of a computer based modelling environment for upper secondary school geography classes.
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: Geography education,Computer assisted learning,Models,Upper secondary education,Educational software
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10021561
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