© 2019

GIScience Teaching and Learning Perspectives

  • Shivanand Balram
  • James Boxall

Part of the Advances in Geographic Information Science book series (AGIS)

About this book


This volume uniquely links educational theories and the practice of GIScience in higher education contexts to guide classroom practice, present effective practical implementations from peers, and provide resources and strategies for effective teaching methods. The book offers a comprehensive exploration of GIScience education, including current trends and future educational needs in GIScience, and will act as a resource to prepare learners for a world that demands more intensive investment in present-day education and technological literacy. Additionally, the indirect benefit of merging the fragmented literature on GIScience literacy will provide a basis to examine common techniques and enable a new wave of research more rooted in learning theories. In ten chapters, the book is designed to attract an audience from geographic information systems science, geomatics, spatial information science, cartography, information technology, and educational technology as focus disciplines.


GIScience Geospatial literacy GIS education Remote sensing WebGIS Participatory mapping Spatial modeling Neogeography

Editors and affiliations

  • Shivanand Balram
    • 1
  • James Boxall
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of GeographySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  2. 2.GIS Centre, Killam LibraryDalhousie UniversityHalifaxCanada

About the editors

University teaching and service have always been tightly interconnected aspects for Shivanand Balram. Since his undergraduate studies he has been continuously active in all aspects of university teaching and service in various capacities. He has an undergraduate degree in Physics (solar energy applications), a Masters degree in GIS and Remote Sensing (medical geography), and a PhD degree in Geography (GIS and Environmental Modelling) together with more than twenty years of university teaching experience. In chronological order, he was: Instructor for High School Physics Students, University Lecturer in Physics, GIS Consultant for a US$ 3M training program for government agencies, Urban GIS consultant for a US$10M Inter-American Development Bank urban renewal program, Online course instructor, MOOC course instructor, and currently serves as a Senior Lecturer of Spatial and Geographic Information Science. Through a number of grants from internal and external sources for the last 5 years, he has completed three projects dealing with blended learning, learning outcomes, and video learning objects within a Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) investigation framework. He has contributed to the profession through peer-reviewed publications, manuscript reviews, conference organization, specialized committees of professional organizations, and graduate student supervisory committees.

James Boxall is first and foremost an educator. He teaches geography and GIS at Dalhousie University where holds appointments in Marine Affairs, Planning, Earth Sciences and Information management. His current position is as The Geographer in the GIS Centre at Dalhousie. He was on the National Science Foundation Review Panel of the Alexandria Digital Geolibrary project, a past-president of the Canadian Cartographic Association, the Association of Canadian Map Libraries and Archives, and the Geomatics Association of Nova Scotia. He is a Governor and Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS) and a member of the Canadian Geographic Education Committee (CGE) and Chairs the Research Grants Committee for RCGS. He received the Society’s Education Medal in 2012 for helping to found the CGE of RCGS, and also received the Franklin Expedition Erebus Medal in 2015. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. He is also on Board of Governors of the Nova Scotia Museums. James co-chairs the International Network for Learning and Teaching Geography; is a regional representative on the IGU Commission for Geographical Education; member of the Canadian Committee for International Map Year; and past co-chair of the Canadian Round Table on Geomatics (NRCan) leading the development of GeoAlliance Canada. He was a lead proponent for the Declaration to Enhance Geographic Education in Canada. He sits on the Journal of Map and Geography Libraries review board. His professional passion is geospatial information and oceans.

Bibliographic information

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