• Developing a Web 2.0 technology for hazard response simulation

      Miller, Servel; France, Derek; University of Chester (Higher Education Academy, 2012)
      Students studying disaster/hazard management in UK Higher Education institutions (HEi's) traditionally focus on hazard mapping and process analysis, but have limited opportunities to develop their risk communication skills which are required during emergency response situations. These skills are vital for the real world and employment. Opportunities to develop risk communication skills are not readily available to students during their studies as employers are reluctant to offer placements due to legal barriers. Therefore, universities have to develop tools to provide students with this vital ‘real-world’ experience. Over the last two years, the department of Geography & Development Studies at the University of Chester has begun to explore and evaluate the role of the Web 2.0 tool, Yammer (microblogging/communication tool) for natural hazard (volcano) simulation exercises. This paper highlights the continuing development of the natural hazard simulation exercise through input from external emergency/contingency practitioners locally and internationally to enhance its usability. Input from practitioners has resulted in the adaptation of the tool to flooding hazard emergency response and to other geographically based scenarios (e.g. crime analysis). The input from professionals in the field has enhanced the quality of the exercise/tool as well as providing students with vital employability skills currently used in the workplace of hazard management. Feedback from students highlighted their feeling of a ‘real-life’ pressure situation in which ‘real-time’ decisions have to be made in response to a rapidly changing environment. At the same time they indicated that their experience was stimulating, fun, innovative and enabled networking and interactive opportunities between tutors and students. The development of the Web 2.0 simulation tool through contributions from practitioners and an assessment as to whether the use of such technologies enhances student-learning experience is the focus of this paper.
    • Developing active personal learning environments on smart mobile devices.

      Whalley, Brian; France, Derek; Park, Julian; mauchline, Alice; Welsh, Katharine E.; University of Sheffield, University of Chester, University of Reading (Springer, 2019-10-10)
      ‘Tablets’ and other 'smart' devices (such as iPads and iPhones)have established themselves as a significant part of mobile technologies used in mobile (m-)learning. Smart devices such as iPads and the Apple Watch not only provide many apps that can be used for a variety of educational purposes; they also allow communication between students and tutors and with the world at large via social media. We argue that 'smart' mobile devices enable personalized learning by adjusting to the educational needs of individuals. We refer to Salmon's quadrat diagram to suggest where using mobile technologies should be of benefit to revising our views of pedagogy, making it much more responsive to students' needs in education as well as the world in general. Smart mobile devices now contain computing power to allow voice and face recognition, augmented reality and machine learning to make them intelligent enough to act as tutors for individual students and adjust and respond accordingly. To take advantage of these facilities on mobile devices, pedagogy must change from an institution-centred to a student-tutor-device focus. This is best done via 'active learning' and incorporating cognitive awareness into an educational operating system that can develop with the owner.
    • Developing ethical geography students? The impact and effectiveness of a tutorial based approach

      Healey, Ruth L.; Ribchester, Chris; University of Chester (Taylor and Francis, 2016-02-17)
      This paper explores the effectiveness of a tutorial based approach in supporting the development of geography undergraduates’ ethical thinking. It was found that overall the intervention had a statistically significant impact on students’ ethical thinking scores as assessed using Clarkeburn et al.’s (2003) Meta-Ethical Questionnaire (MEQ). The initiative led to a convergence of scores, having a bigger impact on those who had a relatively low score prior to the intervention. Interestingly the approach had the biggest impact on students who self-identified as physical geographers. Unlike some previous research there was little evidence of difference between male and female students.
    • Development of Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication (CERC) activities and an Evaluation of their Impact on Learning: Geoscience students’ perceptions,

      Miller, Servel; France, Derek; Welsh, Katharine E.; University of Chester (National Committee of Geography of Belgium, Société Royale Belge de Géographie, 2015)
      Recently, the recognition of Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication (CERC) tools in natural hazard management and disaster reduction has gained prominence. A successful CERC will ensure the relevant stakeholders are effective communicating with each other. This requires a clear plan and set of principles that enables the stakeholders to function effectively in a crisis. Students hoping to work in the emergency and natural hazard management field need to develop these skills. This paper outlines the development of a range of risk communicating activities including simulation exercises for undergraduate Geoscience students. Progress in the development of the students risk communication skill through the series of activities is tracked and evaluated. Results indicate that 87% of the students perceived their risk communication skills were good or excellent after undertaking the exercises compared to 26% before. This paper also evaluates the impact of the activities and if they motivated them to learn more about the subject as a whole. Students generally indicated that the exercises motivated them to learn more about natural hazard management and they felt that they have become better risk communicators. They also indicate that they gained a more in-depth understanding of the requirements of effective and timely communications should they need to develop a CERC strategy during a crisis.
    • A Developmental Framework for Mentorship in SoTL Illustrated by Three Examples of Unseen Opportunities for Mentoring

      Friberg, Jennifer C; Frake-Mistak, Mandy; Healey, Ruth L.; Sipes, Shannon; Mooney, Julie; Sanchez, Stephanie; Waller, Karena
      Mentoring relationships that form between scholars of teaching and learning occur formally and informally, across varied pathways and programs. In order to better understand such relationships, this paper proposes an adapted version of a three-stage model of mentoring (McKinsey 2016), using three examples of unseen opportunities for mentoring in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) to illustrate how this framework might be operationalized. We discuss how the adapted framework might be useful to SoTL scholars in the future to examine mentorship and how unseen opportunities for mentoring might shape how we consider this subset of mentorship going forward.
    • 'Digital by Default' and the 'hard to reach': Exploring solutions to digital exclusion in remote rural areas

      Williams, Fiona; Philip, Lorna; Farrington, John; Fairhurst, Gorry; University of Chester; University of Aberdeen (SAGE, 2016-09-30)
      In the UK, the geography of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure required for Internet connectivity is such that high speed broadband and mobile phone networks are generally less available in rural areas compared with urban areas or, in other words, as remoteness and population sparsity increase so too does the likelihood of an area having no or very poor broadband connectivity. Against a policy backdrop of UK Government efforts to bring forward network infrastructure upgrades and to improve the accessibility of broadband services in locations where there is a weak commercial investment case, this paper considers the options for the ‘final few’ in the prevailing ‘Digital by Default’ public services context. The paper outlines the Rural Public Access WiFi Services project, a study focused upon enabling Internet connectivity for commercially ‘hard to reach’ rural areas in the UK. The Rural Public Access WiFi Services concept and the experiment are introduced before findings from a pilot deployment of a broadband service to households in a remote rural area, who may be classified as ‘digitally excluded’, are presented. The paper then reflects on our field experiment and the potential of the Rural Public Access WiFi Services model as a solution to overcoming some of the digital participation barriers manifest in the urban–rural divide. Early indications show that the Rural Public Access WiFi Services model has the potential to encourage participation in the Digital Economy and could aid the UK Government’s Digital by Default agenda, although adoption of the model is not without its challenges.
    • The digital divide: Patterns, policy and scenarios for connecting the ‘final few’ in rural communities across Great Britain

      Philip, Lorna; Cottrill, Caitlin; Farrington, John; Williams, Fiona; Ashmore, Fiona; University of Aberdeen; University of Chester (Elsevier, 2017-01-17)
      The Internet can bestow significant benefits upon those who use it. The prima facie case for an urban-rural digital divide is widely acknowledged, but detailed accounts of the spatial patterns of digital communications infrastructure are rarely reported. In this paper we present original analysis of data published by the UK telecommunications regulator, Ofcom, and identify and reflect on the entrenched nature of the urban-rural digital divide in Great Britain. Drawing upon illustrative case vignettes we demonstrate the implications of digital exclusion for personal and business lives in rural, and in particular remote rural, areas. The ability of the current UK policy context to effectively address the urban-rural digital divide is reviewed and scenarios for improving digital connectivity amongst the ‘final few’, including community-led broadband, satellite broadband and mobile broadband, are considered. A call is made for digital future proofing in telecommunications policy, without which the already faster urban areas will get ‘faster, fastest’ leaving rural areas behind and an increasingly entrenched urban-rural divide.
    • Displacement in Casamance, Senegal: Lessons (Hopefully) Learned, 2000–2019

      Evans, Martin; Coventry University (Taylor & Francis, 2021-09-05)
      The paper reflects on fieldwork conducted since 2000 with displaced communities in Lower and Middle Casamance, Senegal, amid arguably West Africa’s longest-running civil conflict. While this is a small conflict in a geographically confined space, Casamance presents a microcosm of dynamics common to other displacement situations in Africa. In this context the paper explores how the understandings, lived experiences and practices of the displaced transcend normative categories used by aid actors to define and manage such situations. Five thematic areas are examined: enumeration of the displaced; complex mobilities, both rural-urban and transnational; historiographic understandings of displacement; political manipulation of displacement situations; and the dynamics of return and reconstruction. The paper concludes by summarising failures of understanding in these areas among much of the aid community, and their consequences. It argues that well-grounded and socially nuanced understandings of displacement may inform more effective aid interventions and enhance the peace process.
    • Do educators realise the value of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) in fieldwork learning?

      Clark, Katherine; Welsh, Katharine; Mauchline, Alice; France, Derek; Whalley, Brian; Park, Julian; University of Chester, University of Reading, University of Sheffield
      This paper explores the benefits, barriers and challenges of BYOD (Bring Your Own [mobile] Device) in fieldwork teaching through the views of Higher Education practitioners who have and have not used BYOD in fieldwork. While the use of BYOD has been explored within classroom settings, there are few studies on the use and impact on BYOD in fieldwork., This study investigated the educational benefits of BYOD and the barriers and challenges associated with BYOD in the field. Students were willing to use their own devices in the field and were engaged through the use of BYOD. Practitioners noted various benefits to using BYOD, including student engagement and familiarity with their own devices, potentially increasing time available in the field. Practitioners also highlighted a number of challenges and potential challenges with BYOD including supporting a range of devices, incompatibility and the potential for inequality. This paper also explores the use of mobile technology in fieldwork through the SAMR (Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition) model and discusses the potential for BYOD to change practice.
    • Does digital video enhance student learning in field-based experiments and develop graduate attributes beyond the classroom?

      Fuller, Ian C.; France, Derek; Massey University; University of Chester (Taylor & Francis, 2016-02-09)
      The connection between fieldwork and development of graduate attributes is explored in this paper. Digital technologies present opportunities to potentially enhance the learning experience of students undertaking fieldwork, and develop core digital attributes and competencies required by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and employers. This paper reports the success of adopting digital video capture in technology-rich field experiments that form part of final year undergraduate courses in Physical Geography at an HEI in New Zealand. Student perceptions were obtained via a range of approaches. Results suggest that deployment of digital video reinforces student learning and connects with core graduate attributes.
    • E-learning for geography's teaching and learning spaces

      Lynch, Kenneth; Bednarz, Robert S.; Boxall, James; Chalmers, Lex; France, Derek; Kesby, Julie; University of Gloucestershire ; Texas A&M University ; Dalhousie University ; University of Waikato ; University of Chester ; University of New South Wales (Routledge, 2008-01)
      This article discusses e-learning from a wide range of teaching and learning contexts. The authors promote the idea that considering best practice with reference to educational technology will increase the versatility of teaching geography in higher education.
    • Earthquake vulnerability in the Middle East

      Degg, Martin; Himan, Jacqueline; University College Chester ; University of Wolverhampton (Geographical Association, 2005)
      This article discusses 'information vulnerability' in relation to the public's lack of engagement with hazard mitigation and the need to reduce this through culturally-sensitive approaches to risk education and management. Earthquakes disasters in Turkey and Egypt are used as specific examples.
    • The efficacy of appropriate paper-based technology for Kenyan children with cerebral palsy

      Barton, Catherine; Buckley, John; Samia, Pauline; Williams, Fiona; Taylor, Suzan; Rachel, Lindoewood; Powys Teaching Health Board; University of Chester; Aga Khan University, Kenya
      Purpose: Appropriate paper-based technology (APT) is used to provide postural support for children with cerebral palsy (CP) in low-resourced settings. This pilot study aimed to evaluate the impact of APT on the children’s and families’ lives. Materials and methods: A convenience sample of children with CP and their families participated. Inclusion was based on the Gross Motor Function Classification System levels IV and V. APT seating or standing frames were provided for six months. A mixed methods impact of APT devices on the children and families included the Family Impact Assistive Technology Scale for Adaptive Seating (FIATS-AS); the Child Engagement in Daily Life (CEDL) questionnaire; and a qualitative assessment from diary/log and semi-structured interviews. Results: Ten children (median 3 years, range 9 months to 7 years). Baseline to follow-up median (IQR) FIATS-AS were: 22.7 (9.3) and 30.3 (10.2), respectively (p=.002). Similarly mean (SD) CEDL scores for “frequency” changed from 30.5 (13.2) to 42.08 (5.96) (p=.021) and children’s enjoyment scores from 2.23 (0.93) to 2.91 (0.79) (p=.019). CEDL questionnaire for self-care was not discriminatory; seven families scored zero at both baseline and 6 months. Qualitative interviews revealed three key findings; that APT improved functional ability, involvement/interaction in daily-life situations, and a reduced family burden of care. Conclusions: APT devices used in Kenyan children with non-ambulant CP had a meaningful positive effect on both the children’s and their families’ lives.
    • Embedding research-based learning early in the undergraduate geography curriculum

      Walkington, Helen; Griffin, Amy L.; Keys-Mathews, Lisa; Metoyer, Sandra K.; Miller, Wendy E.; Baker, Richard; France, Derek; Oxford Brookes University ; University of New South Wales ; University of North Alabama ; Texas A&M University ; State University of New York College at Cortland ; The Australian National University ; University of Chester (Routledge, 2011-05-16)
      This article discusses the rationale for embedding research and enquiry skills early in the undergraduate geography curriculum and for making these skills explicit to students. A survey of 52 international geography faculty identified critical thinking, framing research questions, reflectivity and creativity as the most challenging research skills to teach early in the undergraduate curriculum.
    • Engaging in radical work: Students as partners in academic publishing

      Healey, Ruth L.; Healey, Mick; Cliffe, Anthony D.; University of Chester; University of Gloucestershire; Liverpool John Moores University (Efficiency Exchange, 2018-05-31)
      Students as partners is the radical antithesis of the consumerist mind-set in higher education. Yet students have traditionally been absent from one key arena of academia: publishing. The International Journal for Students as Partners seeks to address this absence through pairing academic and student co-editors for all its sections.
    • Enhancing Fieldwork Learning Using Mobile Technologies

      France, Derek; Whalley, W. Brian; Mauchline, Alice; Powell, Victoria; Welsh, Katharine E.; Lerczak, Alex; Park, Julian R.; Bednarz, Robert S.; University of Chester; University of Reading and Texas A&M University (Springer, 2015-10-26)
      This book aims to share and develop pedagogic fieldwork practice of practitioners through the applications of new digital technologies. The book showcases 29 case studies. Fieldwork is a core element of many Bioscience, Geography, Geology, Earth & Environmental Science degree courses. Fieldwork can provide opportunities for experiential learning and research-led teaching in a ‘real-world’ setting. Teaching and learning on fieldwork can be enhanced through the use of digital technologies; tablets provide opportunities to develop novel approaches to fieldwork pedagogy that neither students nor tutors envisaged possible through traditional means.
    • Enhancing outcomes and reducing inhibitors to the engagement of students and staff in learning and teaching partnerships: Implications for academic development

      Matthews, Kelly E.; Mercer-Mapstone, Lucy; Dvorakova, Sam L.; Acia, Anita; Cook-Sather, Alison; Felten, Peter; Healey, Mick; Healey, Ruth L.; Marquis, Elizabeth; University of Queensland; University of Edinburgh; McMaster University; Bryn Mawr College; Elon University; University of Gloucestershire; University of Chester; Healey HE Consultants (Taylor & Francis, 2018-11-20)
      A growing body of literature on students as partners in learning and teaching offers evidence on which academic developers can draw when supporting, advocating for, or engaging in partnerships. We extend a previous systematic review of the partnership literature by presenting an analysis and discussion of the positive and negative outcomes of partnership, and the inhibitors to partnership. Implications include the importance of academic developers supporting: the relational processes of partnership; institutional or structural change to address resistance; and the potential of partnership to make institutions more equitable and empowering spaces.
    • Ethical thinking in a disciplinary context: The ethical development of undergraduates and expectations of tutors in the arts, social and pure sciences

      Healey, Ruth L. (2015-02-23)
      Barnett (2000: 257) argues that universities need to prepare students for ‘supercomplexity’, where “the very frameworks by which we orientate ourselves to the world are themselves contested”. Learning to think through ethical issues develops critical thinking skills for dealing with supercomplexity, since the frameworks students use to consider ethical issues are contested and likely to change. This research explores disciplinary variations in the development of undergraduates’ ethical thinking during their programmes and compares how this aligns with the expectations of their tutors. Interviews were conducted with tutors teaching on the English, Geography and Animal Behaviour and Welfare programmes at an English University and a questionnaire was completed by 335 students studying on these programmes. It was found that across the disciplines tutors have similar expectations in terms of the nature of ethical thinking desired but that most of the students exhibit lower levels of ethical development than their tutors expected.
    • Evaluation of the use high resolution satellite imagery to map slope instability in a tropical environment: St. Thomas, Jamaica

      Miller, Servel; Leszczyńska, Małgorzata; University of Chester ; University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn (Vilnius Gediminas Technical University Press Technika, 2014-05-31)
      Landslides are a major natural hazard in Jamaica, and have resulted in loss of life, major economic losses, social disruption and damage to public and private properties. There is a need to delineate areas that are prone to slope instability in order to mitigate their effects. The first and most important stage for the creation of a landslide risk maps is the collection of accurate landslide data in a timely manner. However the type of terrain makes landslide mapping particularly difficult. Aerial Photographs have proven to be an effective way of mapping landslides but acquiring new photographs to map recent landslides is very expensive. High resolution satellite imagery were evaluated for their effectiveness in delineating landslides. The landslides on a whole had no distinctive spectral property; hence no one classification technique could be used to identify them. This research developed integrative methods utilising a combination of: edge enhancement to delineate the scarps area; Wetness Index to identify back titling blocks and debris flow lobes where moisture is higher; shape classification (to distinguish from e.g. ground cleared for agriculture); and slope curvature to map scarps. The information from the image classification was combined in a GIS and automated to determine the probability of the presence and or absence of a landslides. Data derived was validated against detailed field mapping at a scale of 1:5000. For more recent landslides, the modelling proved to be effective, accurately identifying 91% of the landslide both in terms of the location and extent. For the older landslides Pre 2000) the mapping was less effective, with misclassification as high as 24% particularly for smaller landslides. However, the use of these imagery does have great potential as they prove useful for mapping new landslides quickly and efficiently after landslide disaster and are much cheaper and quicker to acquire.
    • Evaluation of the use high resolution satellite Imagery to map slope instability in a tropical environment: St. Thomas, Jamaica

      Miller, Servel; Leszczyńska, Małgorzata; University of Chester (VGTU Press, 2014-12-31)
      Landslides are a major natural hazard in Jamaica, and have resulted in loss of life, major economic losses, social disruption and damage to public and private properties. There is a need to delineate areas that are prone to slope instability in order to mitigate their effects. The first and most important stage for the creation of a landslide risk maps is the collection of accurate landslide data in a timely manner. However the type of terrain makes landslide mapping particularly difficult. Aerial Photographs have proven to be an effective way of mapping landslides but acquiring new photographs to map recent landslides is very expensive. High resolution satellite imagery were evaluated for their effectiveness in delineating landslides. The landslides on a whole had no distinctive spectral property; hence no one classification technique could be used to identify them. This research developed integrative methods utilising a combination of: edge enhancement to delineate the scarps area; Wetness Index to identify back titling blocks and debris flow lobes where moisture is higher; shape classification (to distinguish from e.g. ground cleared for agriculture); and slope curvature to map scarps. The information from the image classification was combined in a GIS and automated to determine the probability of the presence and or absence of a landslides. Data derived was validated against detailed field mapping at a scale of 1:5000. For more recent landslides, the modelling proved to be effective, accurately identifying 91% of the landslide both in terms of the location and extent. For the older landslides Pre 2000) the mapping was less effective, with misclassification as high as 24% particularly for smaller landslides. However, the use of these imagery does have great potential as they prove useful for mapping new landslides quickly and efficiently after landslide disaster and are much cheaper and quicker to acquire.