Mines, Wines and Thoroughbreds Virtual Fieldtrip
July 18 2016
The virtual fieldtrip in GEOS2121 in 2016 promises to be the best ever! The 2016 Mines, Wines and Thoroughbreds Virtual Fieldtrip is a component of GEOS2121 Environmental and Resource Management. In 2016 this unit is coordinated by Dr. Yayoi Lagerqvist and includes important input from Dr. Josephine Gillespie.
Last week Professor Phil McManus and Dr. Kevin Davies spent two days in the Hunter Region of NSW filming new material for the 2016 virtual fieldtrip. “This fieldtrip covers terrestrial, marine and atmospheric issues,” said Professor McManus. “The management of environmental issues is crucial, and the Hunter Region brings together the coal industry, important viticulture and the major thoroughbred breeding region in Australia. Students learn about these industries, their needs and impacts, and how to manage potential conflicts”.
In addition to new footage for the 2016 virtual fieldtrip, there is a new platform that uses GIS to help students understand where they are, and the relationships between the places that they are visiting. “it’s a very exciting development based on a teaching innovation grant awarded to Dr. Eleanor Bruce, Associate Professor Derek Wyman and myself,” explained Phil. “For the first time we are able to really show students where the activities occur, what the activities look like and explain their requirements, impacts and how they affect the ecological, social and economic life of the Hunter Region and beyond.”
While many contemporary issues are covered in the whole unit of study, the virtual fieldtrip includes issues of climate change, port development, the history of the river, tourism, wineries, thoroughbred horse breeding, local economic development, sustainability and naturally occurring geological features such as Burning Mountain at Wingen. “The access given to students at some of these sites is fantastic. This is a wonderful learning opportunity for any student enrolled in GEOS2121 Environmental and Resource Management,” said Professor McManus, “and we are very pleased in the School of Geosciences to offer this amazing opportunity to students”.
Winery image credit: Two Rivers Winery