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Instructional Development Award Recipients

Several undergraduate instructors who attended the 2004, 2005, 2006, or 2007 SPACE workshops were awarded funds to continue their efforts in integrating spatial analysis into their course curriculums. These pages showcase their achievements. See the full recipient list.

Steve Wuhs

Affiliation: Government and International Relations, University of Redlands
Workshop Attended: GIS and Spatial Modeling for Use in Undergraduate Education, OSU, 2004
Accomplishment: Developed and taught a new course on Territorial Politics: Territory, Politics, and Economy, the first example of a lab-based social science course at UR. The labs provide students with exposure to spatial analytic software such as GeoDa and ArcMap, and to applications of the GoogleEarth geo-browser.

Notable Achievements in His Own Words

The SPACE program enriched my teaching and research work, and I can work through Territorial Politics to introduce my students to a spatial analysis of the global political economy.
Steve Wuhs

While I have a strong intellectual background in political economy, the development of this course would have been impossible without my participation in the 2007 SPACE workshop. My analytic training lies in statistical and qualitative methods, and while geography has frequently featured in rudimentary ways in my teaching (e.g., regional courses on Latin American politics) space itself had never figured as a prominent explanatory factor in my classes. This failing is indicative, I think, of broad deficiencies in my field of political science, wherein space, when considered, is normally treated as a container in which politics occurs rather than an influence on politics in its own right. That weakness and my interest in Redlands’ spatial initiative were the motivation for my participation in SPACE, which offered both the intellectual foundation for a more profound appreciation of space and place and the tools that I will employ in the instruction of this class.

Context for Workshop

The University of Redlands is currently undertaking a very deliberate effort to disseminate spatial thinking across its undergraduate curriculum, both through the infusion of existing courses with spatial elements and through the creation of new courses with those elements. This month I became the first faculty member to offer a new course under these auspices. My course, Territorial Politics: Territory, Politics, and Economy, introduces students to the dramatic transformations experienced by the global economy in recent decades and the political and spatial consequences of those transformations. While listed in the Government and International Relations Department, its emphasis and content are explicitly interdisciplinary, drawing from political science, economics, sociology, and geography to characterize globalization and understand how particular industries and their components have been affected by it. This is a pioneering course beyond that intellectual breadth, however. It is also the first social science course at Redlands to include a weekly lab session. Through those labs, students will develop both the ability to critically assess spatial and other visual representations of data and some facility with data manipulation and representation through GeoDa, ArcMap, and GoogleEarth.

Questions Addressed in the Course

Excerpt from the Course Flier:
The forces of globalization have radically restructured how the US economy operates and the economic and political relationships that the US maintains with neighboring countries. In this course, students will have the opportunity to learn about political economy and its political effects, understand the United States and Mexico in new and important lights, and gain practical experience in social research and analysis, including Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

If you like an intellectual challenge, want to gain marketable skills, and are interested in interdisciplinary work, please register for this exciting and innovative course.

Course Materials

Syllabus for Territorial Politics    (20kb)

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