School Teacher's Zone
Lectures for Schools Series
The Department offers a series of lectures for sixth form students. The lectures we offer have been updated this year to support the new A Level specifications on offer.
Please check back here for events coming up soon.
Geography and the Space Academy
The UK’s first Space Academy has recently been be set up at the National Space Centre, with partners at the University of Leicester, the University of Nottingham, the Regional Science Learning Centre for the East Midlands and STEMNET. Space Academy will work simultaneously with pupils, educators, industry and leading academics to enrich and enhance the learning experiences of students, with a focus on key stage four and five. A series of curriculum-focused masterclasses in geography, chemistry, biology/environmental science, physics and applied science subjects are currently being developed, which uses the context of space and climate change to boost learners’ engagement and understanding. The project will also focus on providing curriculum support for teachers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subject through consultations, conferences and workshops. More details of the Space Academy can be found at their website, and information about the Geography masterclasses that are being developed can be obtained from Dr Catherine Muller.
80Days: evaluate a new virtual learning world
Researchers in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Leicester are seeking school Geography departments to help them test and evaluate a new digital educational game that they are developing.
The project, funded by the Seventh Research Framework Programme of the European Union, aims to create a computer game that integrates interactive and individual storytelling with intelligent and pedagogically proven personalisation, and is being developed as a collaborative project across Europe. The game aims to have a strong narrative thread and be fun and engaging to play, using real geographic data and state-of-the-art graphics and sound. It will make use of adaptive technologies to balance the game's playing and learning aspects to the individual student. And it will follow a curriculum developed to cater for most aspects found in the teaching of Geography across Europe (consistent with Key Stage Three).
The researchers at the University of Leicester are involved in evaluating the final outcome of the game, to see if it works educationally, whether the adaptive learning algorithms are effective, and to make sure the game is fun to play. There will be three versions of the game produced, an "alpha", a "beta" and a "final", with ten months in-between each release. The first version should be ready towards the end of February 2009. The evaluation has full approval from the University’s Research Ethics Committee. The evaluation process takes half a day and full expenses can be covered.
For more information on the project, visit their website.
If you would like to discuss the project with in more detail, or think your students might benefit from taking part in this evaluation, please contact Dr Tim Gamble.