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Articles | Volume 1
15 Jul 2019
 | 15 Jul 2019

Web Cartography going public: Developing a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for cartographic prosumers

Lorenz Hurni, Charalampos Gkonos, and Hans-Rudolf Baer

Keywords: MOOC for Cartography, Course Development, Course Evaluation, Web Cartography

Abstract. The science of cartography has evolved significantly during the last years. Major developments have been achieved in the specific areas of output media, map production technologies and dissemination channels. The existence of several freely available web-mapping tools (e.g. JavaScript mapping libraries) encourages a broader community of users to produce web-maps and visually represent research results and data. Despite the obvious advantages of promoting the importance of cartography to a wider audience, the difficulty of conveying, acquiring and applying specialised cartographic knowledge might discourage this new global “crowd” of prosumers (= at the same time producer and users of maps).

A modern and promising approach in reaching those target groups is through a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). MOOCs belong to a relatively new Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) group of educational approaches, which an increasing number of universities try to integrate in their teaching. The main objectives of those courses is to disseminate knowledge through the sharing of free high-quality learning materials, to produce new knowledge through students’ interactions with the course platform, and to enable research on education and learning. In spite of the numerous advantages offered by MOOCs, their number remains relatively small within the field of cartography, compared to other scientific areas (e.g. Business & Management).

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