Monday, December 12, 2011

Geography Classes Using Ball State University Libraries' Maps

Geography Students Learn about the Effects of Flooding Using Topographic Maps

Dr. David Call, Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at Ball State University, teaches two sections of Geography 101: Earth, Sea, and Sky: A Geographic View. In the class, students learn about selected aspects of the physical environment and their relationship to human occupancy of the earth.

The final project for the students this fall involved learning about the effects of flooding on various environments around the United States. Dr. Call used topographic maps from the University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) to show students how these environmental factors are depicted graphically on the maps.

Students used maps of New Orleans and Laplace, Louisiana, Chester, Illinois, and Natchez and Valley, Mississippi to study how the changing course of rivers affect state boundaries and land claims, how the city’s low elevation affects New Orleans, and how river deltas can be an excellent resource for fossil fuels. Dr. Call also uses topographic maps from the GRMC for another assignment about cities in relation to rivers and mountains and glacial landforms and transportation evolution.

The GRMC provides maps for professors, teachers, and students for presentations and classroom projects. Maps from the GRMC can be used for these special projects for the entire semester. All maps circulate for two weeks or longer. Please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097 or email for more information about using maps in the classroom.

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