'Living Geography': Ken Bland previews next month's conference
The Geographical Association's annual conference will be held this year at the University of Southampton from April 10 to April 12, offering more than 100 lectures, symposia, workshops and field visits and an extensive resources exhibition.
This year's theme, "Living Geography", will focus on the contemporary world. On Wednesday there is a wealth of sessions related specifically to key stages 1 and 2, presenting a wide range of advice on resources, case studies, information technology, fieldwork and teaching approaches. Wednesday also sees the finals of the World Wise Quiz, when the more geographically informed 16-year-olds battle it out for the coveted first prize.
Lectures include contributions from Bill Chambers on "Fieldwork and Progression", Simon Catling on "Mapping for Life", Margaret Mackintosh on "Primary Geography, Yesterday, Today and Forever". Fieldwork outings will explore the New Forest, Pulborough Brook Nature Reserve and the City of Winchester. Wednesday ends with the prestigious GARoyal Geographical Society (IGB) lecture on "Virtual Geography" given by Professor David Rhind.
Thursday and Friday are geared to the secondary and higher education sector. Key lectures include an update from the School Curriculum and Assessment Authority, Rex Walford on "Land Use UK and Geography Action Week 1996", Robert Gant on "The Geography of the British Geriatric" and "Monitoring and Modelling Environmental Change" by Professor John Thornes. The Presidential lecture by Mike Morrish will be "The Living Geography of China".
The lecture by SCAA's chief executive Nick Tate, on "Identity, Community and the Curriculum", is likely to be thought-provoking. Professor Hartwig Waubrich, chair of the International Geographical Union Commission on Geographical Education, will speak on "Identity, Solidarity and the New Geography of Europe".
On Friday a major focus will be on the new GCSE syllabuses with presentations by all the examining boards. Chris Durbin will attempt to take us "Further Down the Information Super Highway" while Professor Jack Hardisty will give details of the Humber Observatory project. Colin Regan will lecture on "Maps of Omission Geography and Development Education".
The conference is free for day visitors and there is no need to register in advance.
Geographical Association, 343 Fulwood Road, Sheffield S10 3BP. Tel: 0114 2670666. Fax: 0114 2670688