2006 Philadelphia Annual Meeting (2225 October 2006)
Paper No. 85-18
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-12:00 PM

ITOOL OR ITOY?: THE USE OF IPOD ON A FIELD-BASED INTRODUCTORY GEOLOGY COURSE

ELKINS, Joe T. and LYLE-ELKINS, Nichole, Geology, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH 43403, jelkins@bgnet.bgsu.edu

Bowling Green State University's GeoJourney is an entirely field-based introductory interdisciplinary expedition lasting nine weeks that travels 14,500 miles by van across the United States. The courses taught on the program include an introductory physical/historical geology sequence, an environmental studies course and a course on the cultural chronologies of Native American groups. The itinerary for GeoJourney is designed to use public lands, large-scale civil engineering projects, regional museums and visitors centers, and Indian reservations as the field setting for teaching introductory-level concepts. The itinerary also requires students in the program to spend considerable time in vehicles traveling to the field stops. Additionally, because of the primitive living conditions (the participants camp outdoors every night), the fast-paced itinerary, and the remoteness of most field stops, student access to the modern electrical grid, the internet, and electronic course materials is limited. However, the 30 GB iPod has capabilities that allow GeoJourney students to access many electronic course materials commonly used on campus. Instructional videos and documentaries were converted to .mp4 files, PowerPoint-assisted lectures were converted to podcasts, figures and images were converted to .jpg files, audio-CD's were converted to .mp3 files, and MS Word documents were converted to .txt files and stored on the iPods. The iPods allowed students replay ability of electronic course materials allowing those materials to serve a function similar to that of a traditional text book. Our principle use of the iPods was during travel time to cover preparatory material related to up-coming field-stops. With DC charging cables we kept the iPods recharged while in the vehicles. We also developed a few iPod-based exercises for use in the field that required external, battery back-up packs; the external battery back-up packs were also used by students to power the iPods when replaying electronic course materials in study situations, such as in their tents at night.

2006 Philadelphia Annual Meeting (2225 October 2006)
General Information for this Meeting
Session No. 85--Booth# 38
Geoscience Education (Posters)
Pennsylvania Convention Center: Exhibit Hall C
8:00 AM-12:00 PM, Monday, 23 October 2006

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 38, No. 7, p. 219

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