My World GIS™ is a Geographic Information System (GIS) designed specifically for use in middle school through college classrooms. It has been developed by the GEODE Initiative at Northwestern University as part of a research program on the adaptation of scientific visualization and data analysis tools to support inquiry-based learning.
My World gives learners access to geographic data about our world. It offers easy-to-use tools to perform investigation and analysis as they explore critical issues about the enviornment, geography, geology, demography, history, and much more. Data visualization is ideally suited for learners because it provides a powerful way to make visible the patterns and trends that lie hidden in complex data.
By providing easy access to rich data sets, My World opens the door for learners to explore real-world issues that impact our world.
My World provides a carefully selected subset of the features of a professional GIS environment. These features include multiple geographic projections, table and map views of data, distance-measurement tools, buffering and query operations, and customizable map display. They have been selected to provide the greatest value to students without overwhelming them with complexity. Additional features targeted specifically at educational users have been added, including functions that make it easy for teachers and curriculum developers to distribute data to students and to provide students with background information and instructions online.
My World's features are accessed through a supportive interface that was designed with the needs of students and teachers in mind and has been tested extensively in classrooms. Because it has been developed by educational researchers working closely with teachers and school technology coordinators, My World is also designed to function well in school computing environments where security software may limit students' access to local storage or Internet access may not be reliable.
My World can import data from the industry-standard shapefile format, as well as from tab and comma-delimited text files and from GPS devices. It is also able to access data and imagery dynamically over the web.
Classroom activities for My World are now available for middle school, high school, and college. These activities range from a yearlong, high school environmental science course, to inquiry-based units for middle school, to 2-5 day activities for middle school, college, or high school. Visit the "Activity Center" using the navigation bar on the left to see some of these activities.
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Last Updated: 2014-08-25 10:40:02