Lahti University of Applied Sciences (FINLAND)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 2925-2931
ISBN: 978-84-608-2657-6
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2015
Location: Seville, Spain
In this article a cooperation in using GIS (Geographic Information System) between university students and a municipality is described. Environmental engineering students from Lahti University of Applied Sciences produced a GIS map about oil risk destinations for the municipality of Hattula in Finland. The created spatial data can be used to locate oil tanks and assess their locations in relation to groundwater areas. The dataset also included attribute information about each oil tank.

The aim of the cooperation project was to produce the necessary dataset for the municipality and at the same time add the student's practical knowledge in GIS and project skills through cooperation with work-life. In this paper project-based learning and the cooperation process including its outcomes are described from different points of view: work-life partner, students and teacher.

The municipality of Hattula did not have time or possibilities to construct the needed dataset about the oil tanks. This increased their interest in cooperation. From a teachers point of view this kind of projects give a very good chance for engineering students to train GIS skills in practice. The students got to train how to organize and prepare data for GIS and how to put it on the map. The students felt that the project increased their GIS skills in a different more intensive way, than training in class with readily given data and without a real world aim.

This kind of work-life projects increase the cooperation skills of university students and give the students an opportunity to practice real work-life skills and collaboration with each other and a third party. Project-based learning builds up the students own expertise in a more comprehensive way than projects done only for practice. Work-life projects are essential for universities to enable the quality of graduated students to meet work-life needs.
Work-life skills, project-based learning, university students, GIS.