Learning desert geomorphology virtually versus in the field

Richard J. Stumpf, John Douglass, Ronald Dorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Statistical analyses of pre-test and post-test results, as well as qualitative insight obtained by essays, compared introductory physical geography college students who learned desert geomorphology only virtually, in the field and both ways. With the exception of establishing geographic context, the virtual field trip was statistically indistinguishable from real field trips in establishing basic knowledge about desert geomorphology. However, qualitative results reveal the deepest personal ownership of knowledge among field trip participants. These findings should not be construed as having validity beyond an introductory course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)387-399
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Geography in Higher Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2008


  • Education
  • Fieldwork
  • Geomorphology
  • Physical geography
  • Virtual

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Education


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