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Providing Additional Advantages to Students in a Difficult Employment Market
5 October 2011
As tertiary institutions in the UK and Ireland commence the new academic year, students learning Geographic Information Systems (GIS) at Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) are several steps ahead of their contemporaries, as they have begun to learn how to use eSpatial OnDemand GIS™, cloud-based software developed by local company eSpatial.
“eSpatial approached us earlier in the year, offering us the opportunity to use their software for teaching purposes,” says Niamh O’Reilly, Geomatics Lecturer at DIT.
“Being able to expose our students to an additional GIS software package is a great opportunity. That the vendor is both local, and engaged in cloud computing, made this an offer too good to refuse!”
As a complex discipline that draws on analysis of both geographic and business data, students who learn GIS must grasp theoretical concepts, and gain hands-on experience with GIS software.
Traditional GIS software requires the teaching institution to invest in an IT-heavy setup. In contrast, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) based GIS software like eSpatial OnDemand GIS requires no more than a supported web browser and Internet connection.
While already a commercially successful GIS software vendor, eSpatial has made a firm commitment to offering its software at low cost to tertiary institutions like DIT.
“SaaS-based GIS software is the future of the geospatial industry,” says Chief Executive Officer Philip O’Doherty.
“As a company that has fully embraced cloud computing, we’re passionate about sharing its benefits with other organisations. We’re excited to be able to work with a forward-thinking tertiary institution like DIT, and to give their students the opportunity to use our cutting-edge GIS software.”
For DIT, the software provides a valuable opportunity to enhance the learning experience.
“The Irish employment market is challenging – particularly for new graduates,” says Niamh O’Reilly.
“We’re committed to giving our students every possible advantage in this difficult market. Working with eSpatial, our students will gain familiarity with both cloud computing and an additional GIS software package.”
“This additional experience will be invaluable to them as they graduate and seek employment.”
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About Dublin Institute of Technology
With a history stretching back over one hundred and twenty years, Dublin Institute of Technology has been recognised as a pioneer in technological higher education: the Institute’s alumni have played important roles in technical and scientific innovation, economic and social development and culture and education both in Ireland and internationally. We nurture innovation and creativity across and between disciplines and have been committed to making education accessible to people from diverse backgrounds since our inception. Our aim is to provide the best educational experience for each and every one of our students. (Source DIT Home page. http://www.dit.ie/about/about-dit/).
As part of the Dublin Institute of Technology, the department of Spatial Information Sciences provides the only Geomatics degree program in Ireland. Geomatics can be defined as the science and study of spatially related information. Its focus is on the collection, processing, analysis, management and presentation of information relating to the natural, built, social economic environments.