Curating Geography and Geology Images for Education

Published: 5 September 2019
Geograph has images, lots of images. Sometimes finding images about a specific subject, is hard. Either there are so many matches, or the contributor simply didn't use the right wording, that a keyword search doesn't find it.

To this end we are trying to create a curated sub-selection of Geograph images, categorized along education themed topics, focusing on Geography and Geology (ie subjects that tend to be well illustrated in Geograph images).

We are using a topic list from from ‘Y Termiadur Addysg‘ dictionary; funded by the Welsh Government as the dictionary of standardised terminology for schools and further education LinkExternal link

The curation project is very much in its infancy, and we only have a starter selection at the moment.

Can get a sneak preview at Link
(but remember it's still in the process of being built)


Have preselected images on a number of Education themed topics, think of a Geography teacher, wanting images to illustrate a lesson plan. Searching the entire Geograph collection is time-consuming and error prone (lots of false positives, low quality images, or even just not the right location)

Helping with curation

There are currently the three main processes,

Stage 1 - Curating a Topic List (in progress)

Going through the full topic list from ‘Y Termiadur Addysg‘ and selecting the ones suitable for illustration with Geograph images.

To help with the topic list, see: Link

Stage 2 - Collecting images for each Topic (in progress)

1. Select a topic to going to select images for.

    If don't know what topic you want, there are few options

    1. Just visit: Link will give you a currently active topic directly

    2. See the forum thread: Link a random selection of topics are being posted

    3. See the current topic list: Link - pick one!

    4. Or Link provides a breakdown by region. Eg can see that a particular topic is lacking images in a region,
     so can choose to concentrate on trying to find examples in that region.

    If have a particular topic in mind that you want to provide images for, perhaps easiest is to use the search box on Link , to find it (even if we haven't already made a start) ... and can go right to the main collection form.

2. Once have a topic, select some images!

    Look at images that match the query (ie where contributors have mentioned the topic in their title/description/tags!) and select the best ones.
    Start by running a search via your favorite search, and copy/paste the images into the collection form (or direct into the forum thread)

    But its also important to note there may be many good images for the topic, that do not match a keyword search. You may be able to find other images to include. For example from local knowledge, or just looking for other terms contributors may of used (eg if topic is 'cliff', may also find images under 'crag', or 'outcrop' etc)

    Can do this a number of ways,

    1. Can just make a manual note of any image find, and input the number in the form.

    2. Can use the onsite 'Marked List' function. As you mark images around the site, will be able to input into the form directly
    (the form as a button to take images from current marked list)

    3. Or can have both a search and the collection form open at once, and drag the image (drag the thumbnail - direct from results, or image on page, or the URL from the address bar) into the IDs box. The id will automatically be extracted and input for you.

The 'effort' is in selecting just the most appropriate images. at this stage err on the side of selecting too many images, the final list will go through another round of curation.

Stage 3 - Sorting and refining images for each topic (not yet started!)

As the number of images in the sub-collection grow, will probably look at refining the collection even further, eg making sure selected images are high quality, and varied. And that we have images from all part of the country. First we need the longer list.

Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright September 2019, Barry Hunter; licensed for reuse under a Creative Commons Licence.
With contributions by Geographer. (details)
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