Virtual Environmental Survey using Google Street View.

Posted: November 28, 2010 in environmental, Geog 4b, geography, google maps, google street view, quality survey, virtual, virtual classroom

This project was evolved from wanting to give my A2 Geography students chance to complete a Environmental Quality Survey as part of the requirements for their Pre-release exam Geog 4B. The pre-release material covers the decline and regeneration of Belfast, and after reviewing the pre-release I thought one aspect that they may be asked on was the completion of an Environmental Quality Survey.
With time constraints, money and health and safety being major barriers to actually going across to Ireland I initially thought about completing a similar survey in Manchester, but then I thought most of the aspect of a environmental quality survey ie dereliction, litter, street furniture etc can be identified by using Google Maps Street View. So below is the task and resources I used to set up a “Virtual Environmental Quality Survey“.

Aims:- Students to complete a Virtual Environmental Quality Survey in three locations of Belfast:- Inner North Belfast, Duncairn 1 and Duncairn 2 as identified in pre-release material.

Objectives:– Students will identify 5 random location within the study areas of Inner North Belfast, Duncairn 1 and Duncairn 2. Complete an Environmental Quality Survey, collate the information on spreadsheets and produce a short report including introduction  method, results , analysis and conlcusion.

Procedure:-
I first ran an introductory session on Environmental Quality Survey and decided on using a Bipolar method.A bipolar survey uses a  slding scale for example of 1 to 5 with two opposing views for example Poor Quality Housing to Superior Quality Housing. The spreadsheet below shows this.

Using google maps street view, link to Google Maps
http://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&ll=54.597269,-5.930109&spn=0.112972,0.441513&msid=100127807764833916066.0004961bac95029c9c5c6&output=embed
View Belfast Environmental Quality Survey in a larger map

The screencast below shows how to use Google Street View to assess the Environmental Quality of the area, by looking through 360 degrees and using the zoom function to look for litter, graffiti  and pavement quality etc. Obviously two things that can not be assessed are Noise and Air Pollution so for our survey we left these out.

http://screenr.com/Content/assets/screenr_1116090935.swf

Students collated their results on a spreadsheet I had placed on the colleges VLe, (this could also have been done using Google Documents) however, I divided the class into three groups, each group tasked with surveying a separate area, the spreadsheet was automated to calculate the Environmental Quality Survey result, the lower the score the poorer the environmental quality, we then collated the results on the whiteboard at the front of the class(with students copying this down) and the students were then asked to graphically present their findings, analyse their results and draw conclusion.

After speaking with Chris Mason @57Mason today at the #UKief10 he reminded me of a site from which students could have access to Airquality Data http://www.airquality.co.uk/  The UK National Air Quality Archive.

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Comments
  1. […] This project was evolved from wanting to give my A2 Geography students chance to complete a Environmental Quality Survey as part of the requirements for their Pre-release exam Geog 4B. The pre-rele…  […]

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