Make the Future
Summit 2022
Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Story Maps: Better than a Research Paper

Participate and share

Participate and share : Poster

Wednesday, June 26, 11:00 am–1:00 pm
Location: Posters: Level 4, Terrace Ballroom Lobby, Table 48

Shana Crosson  
Discover how to use story maps as an ideal alternative to assigning papers for middle school, high school and higher education students. The University of Minnesota created support materials to make it easy to incorporate these assignments. Walk away with the materials to get started.

Audience: Teachers, Teacher education/higher ed faculty, Technology coordinators/facilitators
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices useful
Attendee device specification: Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Innovation in higher education
Grade level: Community college/university
Subject area: Social studies, Science
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Knowledge Constructor
  • Students build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions.
For Educators:
  • Use technology to create, adapt and personalize learning experiences that foster independent learning and accommodate learner differences and needs.
  • Design authentic learning activities that align with content area standards and use digital tools and resources to maximize active, deep learning.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

Introduce teachers to see geospatial thinking projects as a way to enhance instruction and address more ISTE standards. Provide free, online tools and resources to support geospatial thinking from beginning to more advanced uses.

Participants will be introduced to the Geospatial Inquiry cycle as a way to address ISTE standards and cross-disciplinary practices and to promote student conceptual understanding of key concepts
Participants will be introduced to different types of geographic information systems (GIS)
Participants will know where and how to obtain a free Esri Education Organization Account
Participants will know how to find resources with sample assignments, rubrics and instructional materials about creating assignments with GIS Based Story Maps.
Participants will know how to create assignments that utilize GIS based Story Maps.
Participants will understand the value of assigning projects like Story Maps to increase student engagement, provide authentic learning experiences and promote digital competencies.

Supporting research

Baker, T., Battersby, S., Bednarz, S., Bodzin, A., Kolvoord, B., Moore, S., & Uttal, D. (2015). A research agenda for geospatial technologies and learning. Journal of Geography, 114, 118-130. doi: 10.1080/00221341.2014.950684
Baker, T. R., & White, S. H. (2003).The effects of G.I.S. on students' attitudes, self-efficacy, and achievements in middle school science classrooms. Journal of Geography, 102, 243-254.
Guskey, T. (2002). Professional development and teacher change. Teachers and Teaching, 8, 381–391.

Warshawsky, D. N. (2016). Teaching GIS in the Classroom: Story Maps as a Case Study. STEM and GIS in Higher Education, 10, 187-196. ;

Teachers' Perceptions of Esri Story Maps as Effective Teaching Tools. Strachan, Caitlin ; Mitchell, Jerry. Review of International Geographical Education Online, 2014, Vol.4(3), p.195-220
Story Maps and Disability Studies: A Digital Blueprint for TeachingCommunity Engagement. Aldinger, Joseph M. M. International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing, 2018, Vol.12(1), p.59-70

Story maps bring field trips to life; Dutchess County, NY cold case to inspire the young geologist. Vaculik, Anna F. ; Conrad, Susan Howes ; Marcano, Eugenio; Mount Holyoke College, Department of Geology and Geography. Boulder, CO, United States: Geological Society of America (GSA). Geological Society of America, Northeastern Section, 51st annual meeting, 2016, Vol.48(2)

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Shana Crosson, University of Minnesota

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