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What kind of quantitative methods for what kind of geography?

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Abstract:

This paper asks why we teach what we teach to geography undergraduates in quantitative methods courses. We re-consider the origins of quantitative geography and note how partial and historically contingent the traditional syllabus is. From this basis, we suggest that other approaches should be considered in order to provide a broader training in quantitative methods. We then propose an example syllabus that attempts to integrate a range of quantitative methodologies within a common, applied context that is also connected to relevant social, economic and political issues. We conclude that students with a better understanding of methods in physical and social science could be very valuable to the betterment of society, but to achieve this may require a change to our quantitative methods teaching.

Keywords: Bayesian statistics; dimensional analysis; geographic education; quantitative methods; quantitative revolution; undergraduate syllabus

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0004-0894.2004.00237.x

Affiliations: 1: Earth and Biosphere Institute and School of Geography, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9JT, Email: c.j.keylock@leeds.ac.uk 2: Department of Geography, University of Sheffield, Winter Street, Sheffield S10 2TN

Publication date: 2004-12-01

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