Incorporating ArcGIS Online in the Social Studies Classroom: Comparative Case Studies




Lippart, Jeremy L.

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Social studies in general, and geography in particular, have been sidelined in many secondary schools in recent years in favor of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) focused instruction. This situation continues to exist in spite of the growth of usage of geographic information systems (GIS) technology at the university level and throughout numerous professional fields. GIS, though underappreciated at the secondary level, provides educators with the tools needed to apply a STEM focus to social studies classrooms in a manner that is both authentic and academically rigorous. In keeping with that we set out to develop a lesson plan that can overcome barriers to adoption of GIS in the classroom and evaluate the efficacy of using GIS to teach spatial concepts over more traditional methods. The feedback received from educators was largely in line with expectations set by reviewing relevant literature and highlighted specific strengths of using GIS in a secondary classroom and what obstacles might stand in the way of future adoption.



ArcGIS online, social studies, STEM, geography, education, high school, secondary education, technology, Applied Geography


Lippart, J. L. (2020). Incorporating ArcGIS online in the social studies classroom: Comparative case studies. Master of Applied Geography Degree, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX.


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