Wednesday, 23 May 2012

iPads in New York: Trip Report

Nine students from the University of Chester used iPads during their recent fieldtrip to New York. The trip focused on social exclusion and urban regeneration in NYC and students were encouraged to use the iPads however they saw fit. Trials of Twitter and Fotobabble were encouraged and used to a good level of success.


The students found the technology really enhanced their experience during the trip. Early issues of lack of 3G access were overcome due to the sheer number of wi-fi hotspots available in NYC (namely Starbucks!).

Twitter was especially popular with the students who used it as a reflective tool and to post photos. The staff members on the trip found this particularly useful as they could also share their experiences through the hashtag #gdschester and see how students were enjoying and reflecting on their experiences over the course of the fieldwork.

"Top of empire state. Cracking views. iPads working well even at this height in the dark!" (@gdschester3)

"Ellis island more positive atmosphere than expected. More hope than disapointment " (@gdschester2)

Livescribe pens were also used and were popular with the students : "Livescribe pens more than useful" (@gdschester2)


The educational values of the iPad were so apparent that two of the staff members accompanying the students also purchased iPads plus a number of students were considering purchasing an iPad in the coming months.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Fieldwork and technology x2

May is a busy month for the Enhancing Fieldwork Learning project! We have two fieldtrips taking place this month, first one is to the Big Apple......New York City! Our Human Geographers here at the University of Chester will be investigating social exclusion, migration and urban regeneration. 

The students are taking iPads and Livescribe pens with them to interview people, make observations and interact with one another. 

We will be trialling Twitter, Fotobabble and iTalk with the student groups.  


Next on the agenda is the Physical Geography trip to Almeria in South-East Spain. 

Students will be making use of netbooks to enter their data whilst out in the field and also will have access to aerial photographs on the netbooks whilst out in the field. 


We are looking forward to talking to the students when they return to gathering their perspectives on using technology on the fieldtrips.