The TUNING Project and the HERODOT Thematic Network

The Tuning project is in part the result of the work and reflection carried out by other earlier Socrates-Erasmus Thematic Networks over the years and a series of Thematic Networks are directly involved in the Tuning project. The Tuning project is now entering into its second phase (2003-2004) and one of the tasks of phase II is to transfer the Tuning methodology to existing and new Thematic Networks. Geography and Geographers have an opportunity to learn from and apply the TUNING approach to their activities through the Europeanisation Thematic Pillar.

Implementing the Tuning methodology has been identified as a basic task of the Thematic Networks in a recent policy paper discussed and endorsed by the Socrates Sub-Committee for Higher Education. This note sets out how the transfer of the Tuning methodology could be organised. To this end the TUNING Project will contribute to the HERODOT launch conference and other events and activities by defining and updating generic and subject specific competences using the method of the Pilot Project "Tuning Educational Structures in Europe".

Council of Europe and Recognition of Qualifications

A Council of Europe conference in late 2002 looked ahead toward 2010. It identified several areas that will be at the centre of attention in the years to come, these are:
• the Lisboa Recognition Convention and its implementation in the context of the European Higher Education Area;
• recognition of qualifications for the labour market;
• assessment of learning outcomes/non-traditional qualifications;
• recognition of qualifications from transnational education;
• information on recognition.

The conference developed a set of recommendations addressed to higher education institutions, ministries and other national higher education authorities, the Council of Europe and the ministers of the Bologna Process, who will meet in Berlin in September 2003. The recommendations, the report of the seminar and most presentations are available on the web site: http://www.coe.int (click on Higher Education).

New Publication on higher education

Higher Education institutions in continental Europe still have a long way to go to be able to stand up to British, Irish and American competition over international students on the global education market. "International" programmes taught in English are still rare in Europe. But their number is rising fast, and they are taught in decent English. These are a few of the many surprising findings of the latest book in the series ACA Papers on International Cooperation in Higher Education.

The publication, English-Language-Taught Degree Programmes in European Higher Education, is the first systematic investigation into the provision and the quality of programmes taught in English at universities and colleges in non-English-speaking countries in Europe. It is based on a survey of nearly 1,600 higher education institutions in 19 European countries.

Bernd Wächter, Director, Academic Cooperation Association (ACA), 15, rue d'Egmontstraat, B-1000 Brussels
Tel: ++322 513 22 41 Fax: ++322 513 17 76, Bernd.waechter@aca-secretariat.be

Research issues, methods and techniques: Invitations for Submissions

The JGHE Editorial Board invites proposals for submissions for short articles (up to c2000 words) examining research issues, methods and techniques in geography in higher education. The aim of these articles will be to support and inform the building of educational research capacity within the international geography community. Submitted articles will be refereed. Jointly written articles from geographers and educational researchers are welcomed.

Topics and themes
Proposals are invited under the following three headings:
a) Issues in geography educational research
This might include, for example, ethical issues in undertaking pedagogical research, identifying research questions, writing research bids, undertaking a literature review, researching your practice, writing up and getting published.
b) Methods, techniques and methodology in geography educational research
This might include, for example, articles on focus group research, action research, experimental design, methodology, searching the literature, analysing qualitative data.
c) Review articles in geography educational research
The section could also include reviews of qualitative and quantitative analysis software packages and comparative reviews of books about research issues, methods, techniques and methodology.

Articles would be embedded in geography practice and/or the literature and address generic research themes illustrated by examples in geography higher education.

Typically articles on methods and techniques would follow the framework below:
1. A brief account of the application of a particular research method or technique (i.e. the who, where, when, how and why), including references where appropriate to examples of studies where its use is illustrated
2. The methodological framework (e.g. interpretive, action-research, experimental design)
3. An account of the kind of data which was yielded (e.g. rich qualitative, impressionistic, inferential statistics); a brief description of the data analysis procedures where appropriate
4. Weaknesses of the method (e.g. research access difficulties, response rates, cost, inherent limits)
5. Strengths of the method to include the contexts and questions that it can best explore (fitness of purpose), complementarity to other methods for triangulation, etc.
6. Brief guidelines or checklist for using this method (or reference to existing published guidelines)
7. Further book/article/website references.

Style
Submissions would differ from a methodology section of a research report, in that what is required is a reflective account of the method deployed, which should be at a distance from the actual research (though this could, of course, be cross-referenced within the account). While not written as a ‘how to guide’, articles will give sufficient information and references to support someone wanting to address the issue or use the method or technique in their own research.
Anyone wanting to discuss this further, please contact
Glynis Cousin, Academic Development Adviser, Centre for Academic Practice, Warwick University. Coventry CV4 7AL g.cousin@warwick.ac.uk

GIS and Maps on the Web

The Ordnance Survey (UK) have launched the GIS files Chapter 6 - Expert GIS Concepts.
This chapter tackles issues such as
* standards in GIS;
* derived mapping and the methods employed;
* mobile GIS and the potential in this field; and
* web GIS with the way maps are used across the Internet

GeoSpatial Solutions and GEO Connexion Magazine

GeoSpatial Solutions http://www.geocomm.com/special/geospatial_mag.html

GEO:connexion Magazine, contact: subscription@geoconnexion.com or call +44 (0) 1480 356499

Fewer trainee Geography teachers in the UK

fewer places for trainee geographers http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/2572651.stm

What is the Chartered Geographer (C.Geog)?

Chartered Status is an internationally recognised professional qualification for Fellows of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) who can demonstrate a high level of competence and professionalism in the practice of Geography and related disciplines, and who are committed to maintaining their professional expertise through an annual continuing professional development programme.

Basic criteria
Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) (you can apply for both at the same time)
Hold an honours degree, or equivalent qualification in Geography or related discipline awarded by a university, or other such establishment
Demonstrate academic achievement, equivalent to the attainment of an honours degree in Geography
Have at least 6 years experience in the profession and practice of Geography since graduating
Have evidence of a commitment to Continuing Professional Development
Have completed an application form, including a professional report of 1000 words

To apply is simple: Fellows only need to submit an extended CV and a report of their practical experience, and an application form.

Continued Professional Development (CPD)
CPD is compulsory for C.Geog and is based on a points scheme, which are awarded from ‘events’ or activities throughout the year. It is largely self regulatory and the CPD requirement is 35 hours per year (20 external and 15 internal). External events (e.g. conferences, presenting papers / writing documents / papers, chairing meetings, training courses etc) are allocated an hours worth value. For example attendance for two days or more at the RGS-IBG International Annual Conference (3-5 September 2003) could be worth 10 external hours.
Hours for internal activities (such as internal seminars, training, teaching above first degree, field trips or publications) would be those actually spent subject to a limit of 5 hours per day allocated.
Additional CPD hours could be accumulated through, for example; wider professional subjects and skills such as management training, IT, language skills, managerial work and professional activities or mentoring. There are other activities which could no doubt qualify here. Your judgment is essential and we will provide the necessary guidance.

Further Information

Further information is available at www.rgs.org/charteredstatus including a downloadable application form. For any other enquiries please contact Felicity Thorne, Professional Officer at f.thorne@rgs.org, +44 (0)20 7591 3027

Conferences and Events 2003

RGS-IBG Annual Conference 2003

Venue: 1 Kensington Gore, London, Date: Weds 3 - Friday 5 September
Theme: Geography, Serving Society and the Environment

Plenaries:
Globalisation, Deprivation and Health, Global London, Geography and the Humanities, Representation of the City and Creativity, Global Change, Geography and the Future of Education, Environmental Governance, EU Water Framework Directive, Voices from Europe, New Europe and New Geography.
Further information: http://www.rgs.org/ACLondon2003 or email rhed@rgs.org

GA Annual Conference 23-25 April 2003, University of Derby

The conference, on the theme of Valuing Geography, will provide valuable cost effective professional development for all levels of education, updates on the teaching of geography, reviews of current and future areas of research, the largest exhibition of geography resources in the UK and opportunities to join various field excursions in the area.

Delegates from Europe will be very welcome and there will be a drinks reception for international visitors and guests on Wednesday 23 April at 17.00-18.00.

Full details of the programme, including booking details and a registration form can be found at http://www.geography.org.uk or by contacting Sarah Clarke (Sclarke@geography.org.uk).

Turbulent Landscapes exhibition, London, UK (19 April - 15 September 2003)
Complex natural events on a large scale create sand dunes, form clouds and hot springs. These form the subject of Turbulent Landscapes, an interactive exhibition from the Exploratorium, San Francisco, using the water, salt, wind and sand. Visitors experience natural phenomena on a human scale, via exhibits that are powerful and thought provoking.
Venue: The Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7.
Contact: Press Office, The Natural History Museum.
Tel: + 44 20 7942 5654. email: J.Glyde@nhm.ac.uk.

Fifth European Conference: A Europe of Many Cultures
8-10 May 2003 - Universidade do Minho, Braga, Portugal, http://www.unl.ac.uk/cice/en/mc.htm

Special International Conference Society and Environment Interaction under Conditions of Global and Regional Changes will take place in Moscow and Barnaul (Altai) July 20-29, 2003
Further Information: http://igu.org.ru/en/events/barnaul_2003.html and: http://www.igu-net.org/uk/news_and_events/altai.pdf

Earth Science for the Global Community, the Fourth International Geoscience Education Conference wish to extend an invitation to attend the August 1014, 2003 Meeting in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
http://www.geoscied.org/
http://www.geoscied.org/images/geosci_poster.pdf

2nd International Swiss NCCR Climate Summer School
Climate Change: Impacts of Terrestrial Ecosystems 30 August - 6 September 2003 Grindelwald, Swiss Alps. The Summer School fosters cross-disciplinary links. An excursion will lead us to exciting research sites.
Information and an application form online at:
http://www.nccr-climate.unibe.ch/events/SummerScool/03/information.htmlRGS- IBG International Annual Conference: Geography Serving Society and the Environment

Earth Science Teachers Association: 36th Annual course and conference
The 36th Annual course and conference takes place 12-14 September 2003 at Manchester University. This year's theme is Earth sciences in the 21st Century. The course will include INSET and workshop events, lectures and fieldworkshops. .
For further information, contact Dr Paul Selden, Dept of Earth Sciences, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK.
Tel: + 44 161 275 3296 email: Paul.Selden@man.ac.uk