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Broadening Students’ Experience With Geospatial Industry-Standard Software
Kingston University, one of the United Kingdom’s leading universities, has selected Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) based Geographic Information System (GIS) software eSpatial OnDemand GIS™ for inclusion in its MSc GIS teaching programme.
“eSpatial approached us earlier in the year, inviting us to trial their software – Web 2.0 technologies (or SaaS) will be increasingly used within business and we wanted to expose our students to a wide range of applications,” says Dr Mike Smith.
“While we already use both commercial and open-source desktop GIS software packages to teach our students, we think it’s important for our students to experience a wide range of software on a variety of platforms. We were also keen to introduce our students to one of the few full-function GIS software packages that’s delivered in the cloud.”
A complex discipline that requires both geographical and analytical knowledge, GIS requires its students to both learn abstract concepts, and gain experience using industry-standard software.
Traditionally, providing students with hands-on experience in using GIS software has entailed an IT-heavy investment from the teaching institution. In contrast, using SaaS-based GIS software such as eSpatial OnDemand GIS requires little setup – just an Internet connection and supported browser.
Already commercially successful, with a growing and very international customer base, Dublin-based eSpatial has firmly committed to offering their software to tertiary institutions at a very low cost.
“We firmly believe that SaaS-based GIS software is the future of the geospatial industry,” says Chief Executive Officer Philip O’Doherty.
“We see great value in providing the geospatial experts of tomorrow with the opportunity to familiarise themselves with full-function, SaaS-based GIS software. We’re excited to be able to work with such a forward-thinking tertiary institution as Kingston University.”
For Kingston University, using eSpatial OnDemand GIS provides a valuable opportunity to enhance the learning experience.
“Our commitment to providing our students with the best education means that we’re always open to new ideas,” says Dr Mike Smith.
“It is particularly important to prepare our students for the future and cloud-based GIS both provides greater breadth and depth to our programme. Our courses run in both on-site and distance learning modes, targeted at working professionals. Being able to offer the same fully-functional GIS to a student in London as well as Melbourne demonstrates both the capability of the system and ease of deployment.”
“This additional experience will stand them in good stead as the geospatial industry continues to evolve.”
Interested in finding out more about eSpatial OnDemand GIS?
About Kingston University
In 1989, Kingston University offered the first GIS undergraduate degree in the world; this was followed by several MSc and PhD research degrees and there are now strong and active undergraduate and postgraduate groups within the Centre. Kingston is the UK’s foremost centre for GIS education and training, with one of the largest GIS programmes in Europe. GIS staff are world renowned experts in their field and deliver undergraduate and postgraduate programmes on-site, via Distance Learning and through Summer School courses.