From Field to Phone: A Karst Camp Chronicle
- Department of Geology, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, 45150, U.S.
Abstract. During the summer of 2020, many geology field camps were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the Karst Geomorphology field course I was scheduled to co-teach through Western Kentucky University. When the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT) in collaboration with the International Association for Geoscience Diversity (IAGD) began the project of supporting working groups to create online field experience teaching material, I saw an opportunity. From my field camp syllabus, I created two activities that are now freely available as peer-reviewed Exemplary Teaching Activities on the Science Education Resource Center (SERC) Online Field Experiences repository:
Karst Hydrogeology: A virtual field introduction using © Google Earth and GIS and
Karst Hydrogeology and Geomorphology: A virtual field experience using © Google Earth, GIS, and TAK [Topographic Analysis Kit]. Each product includes a student handout, an instructor workflow reference, a grading, and NAGT-established learning objectives. The introductory activity is the more basic of the two, is expected to take about one 8-hour day to teach, and walks students through all the steps, as well as providing global examples of karst landscapes to virtually explore. The other activity, Karst Hydrogeology and Geomorphology, assumes student familiarity with © Google Earth, GIS, and karst drainage systems, and is expected to take about twice as long as the introductory activity to teach. To make these learning opportunities financially accessible, all software required for the activities is open-source and alternative workflows for the introductory module are provided so that the entire exercise can be completed using a smartphone. In addition to providing online capstone activities in the time of a pandemic, these activities provide alternative learning experiences to traditional field camps that are inclusive for all geoscience students. In my home department of the University of Cincinnati, I had been contacted by students needing to find capstone experiences when their field camps were cancelled. Responding to this need and providing a virtual alternative for years to come, I reviewed all SERC activities that had been generated during the NAGT/IAGD joint effort. I selected a subset of those to assemble into three learning tracks, each one providing learning hours equivalent to a traditional field camp, that have been added to the course offerings at the University of Cincinnati Department of Geology.
Executable research compendia (ERC)
Karst Hydrogeology: A virtual field introduction using Google Earth and GIS https://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/online_field/activities/237039.html
Karst Hydrogeology and Geomorphology: A virtual field experience using Google Earth, GIS, and TAK https://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/online_field/activities/237267.html
Bosch GSA 2020, "From Field to Phone: A Karst Camp Chronicle" https://youtu.be/3YvbUOlBRs0
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