Ordnance Survey Launched National Survey of Geography Teachers


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Ordnance Survey (OS) has just launched a national survey of thousands of geography teachers to better understand how mapping is taught in the classroom – and to establish where any additional support can be provided. 

 OS maps have been a long established feature in the classroom and OS itself has a lengthy record of supporting the teaching of geography – a key part of the National Curriculum. From how to read a map and its symbols through to showing how to use digital tools and GIS for analysis such as the online resource Digimap for Schools, OS has sought to ensure that the teaching of these skills remains relevant and that an understanding of geography is more important now than ever.

Around 1,500 teachers and trainee teachers are trained by OS a year. And as part of its responsibilities under the Public Sector Geospatial Agreement’s Education Plan, OS is also committed to creating resources for teachers, supplying exam extracts for GCSE/A Level and Scottish Standard and Higher exams, and providing OFSTED-rated 3 and 4 schools with free access to Digimap for Schools. This resource provides access to both current and historical mapping and while already used by 5,000 schools in Great Britain and internationally, it is growing in popularity.

Now, OS has invited geography teachers in primary and secondary schools in England, Scotland and Wales to give feedback on the skills, resources and the tools they use, including those provided by OS, with a view to seeing where additional support can be provided. The survey - which coincides with international Geospatial Information System Day (15 Nov) - is also intended to understand what other training tools geography teachers are accessing and what barriers may be in place when using GIS.

 Darren Bailey, Schools Programme Delivery Manager at OS, said: “The world of geospatial has changed massively over last two decades, with new technologies and online access meaning that children are accessing information on location in completely new ways. It is vital that the teaching of geospatial and school resources reflect this. We want to make sure that the support we already provide to schools is effectively targeted – and surveying teachers nationwide is a great way of doing this.”

 The survey ends on 8th December. OS will provide an overview of the results and an action plan for how they will be used in the new year.

Questions in the survey include: How important do you think maps and map skills are to teaching geography? Have you attended a CPD session or webinar to help with teaching mapping and geospatial? If you have undertaken CPD for Digimap for Schools, how useful was the training? 

To take part in the survey,  click here 

For more information on OS education resources, go to Education | Resources (ordnancesurvey.co.uk)

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