Universitat de Girona (UdG) (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 915-921
ISBN: 978-84-612-7578-6
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 3rd International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 9-11 March, 2009
Location: Valencia, Spain
The work we are presenting grew out of a project that we call "Interactive Guide" which was subsidized in 2007 by the University of Girona to aid cooperative projects of investigation and development in the humanities and the social sciences. The group responsible for the project consists of researchers from the Research Group on Information and Communication Technologies in Education (GreTICE) and the Geology and Environmental Cartography group and of staff from the Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing Service (SIGTE) of the UdG.

The project was initiated with the aim of conducting research that would analyze the didactic possibilities of what could become an innovative resource for the dissemination of information: the creation of guides with content interaction according to user geolocation (communication via satellite).

Based on a GIS and on-site experience that allow mobile devices (especially PDAs), different contents are prepared and can be provided as users complete different routes or activities in natural or urban spaces, and didactic proposals are developed to use this information. It is an application based on the interaction of the following components: GIS, GPS, pedagogical resources and instructional activities in different formats (map, video, audio, etc.), PDA/mobile and Internet.

An "Interactive Guide" with these characteristics is conceived like an educational tool with different potentials:
• Informational support for the routes
• Interactive tool for the development of exercises or activities
• Creative tool

Besides increasing the amount and the quality of the information that can be made available to users, recent technological deployments grant users greater protagonism, allowing them to take part in the creation of the contents offered by the guide. In this way, the information can be expanded and updated from contributions made by users during completion of the routes (photographs, texts, sounds, etc.), and the possibility exists to evaluate the contents sent by other users.

Finally, in the long term, virtual communities of “interactive guide” users could be created to share the material developed by the users themselves.

To follow this course, within the project it is hoped to prepare a website, using a mash-up (a hybrid web application that creates new contents from already existing contents), which shows on a map the georeferenced elements that different users of the "interactive guide" want to share, and allows them to consult information organized by type of route, type of documentation, geographic zone, etc.

Lastly, the final objective of the work being developed is to implement an "interactive guide" model which is accessible through a mobile device, that can be applied to different contexts and with different purposes, doing some pilot testing to assess validity and to detect weak points. Specifically, the required material is being developed to test the device on a route through the city of Girona, focused on knowledge of the stones characteristic of this city, nummulites, and monuments and other buildings where it can be seen.

In the full version of the paper we hope to present the materials involved, the first results of the experimentation and future projects of the research group.