VFE Template & Template Tutorials


Updated February 20, 2013

The text below is copied from the Assessment Tools Page.

About the VFE Templates

VFEs are often technological “mash-ups” involving more than one kind of software. The templates below offer a good place to start.

The templates provide both technological support for creating a VFE quickly and conceptual support for developing the skills for reading a landscape. In any of the three templates below, the author substitutes in pictures of their chosen field site and adapts the questions as appropriate to the unique features of the site. Thus it’s intended to be fairly straightforward technologically. The templates all share a common set of questions that can be asked about any site and that support the project’s driving question: Why does this place look the way it does? That’s part of the conceptual support that indicates that there are questions that can be productively investigated for any site on Earth.

The PowerPoint and Keynote versions of the template were produced first and include some more introductory information than is currently in the Prezi version, but the Prezi offers certain advantages over PowerPoint or Keynote. PowerPoint has the distinct advantage of being more familiar to most users.

Virtual Fieldwork Experience Development: An Introduction & Brief How-To is a nine-page pdf intended to help educators create VFEs. This was last updated in February of 2013.

In addition to the How-To pdf and these templates, we suggest the use of Google Earth or other virtual globe software in developing VFEs.

The Vfe Template for Prezi

See an extended how-to on the Prezi Template here. The Prezi version is the most current and includes an environmental science graphic organizer not included in the PowerPoint version.

VFE Template for PowerPoint & Keynote

Download or view the graphic organizers:

  1. Download the updated graphic organizers: The links immediately below are for just the organizers themselves. For the full template (with slightly dated organizers), select the full templates.

  2. The Geoscience Graphic Organizer (ppt) (png) (Prezi)

  3. The Ecology Graphic Organizer  (ppt) (png) (Prezi

Download or view the VFE Templates:

  1. Download the PowerPoint file

  2. Download the Apple Keynote file

  3. See examples in Prezi:

  4. Mission Trails Regional Park, California (Prezi)

  5. Superstition Mountains, Arizona (Prezi)

  6. View the html file

Here’s some text from the PowerPoint/Keynote template itself, describing its purposes and some of its limitations:

  1. This is a template for creating one sort of virtual fieldwork experiences (VFEs) of sites that are interesting from an Earth systems science perspective.

  2. It is not intended to be the only sort of VFEs, but rather might be thought of as an “entry level VFE.”  The kinds of explorations learners can do in this format are real and valuable but somewhat limited.

  3. For more information about VFEs, see virtualfieldwork.org.  Assessment materials are also available on the site.

  4. The pictures used in the template were taken in the Arbuckle Mountains of Oklahoma in July of 2009.

  5. The questions are intentionally written in such a way that they can be asked about any site.

  6. This is not intended as a presentation, but rather as something for learners to work through individually or in small groups.  Teachers may adapt as they see fit, however.

  7. To use this as a template, simply replace the photos from the Arbuckles with photos from your own field site. All the arrows are hyperlinked.  Click on them to go to a page with more on the question in the arrow.

  8. Blue boxes are hyperlinks.  Links should work in all formats (html, PowerPoint and Keynote). 

  9. Some pictures and text box are also linked.  Move the cursor around the different slides to find links. 

  10. Comments in yellow boxes are either seeking feedback on the draft or suggesting ways slides are expected be changed.

The Como Park Lake PowerPoint VFE was created using the template.  The Como Lake Park Google Earth VFE uses the same set of photos but, obviously, uses Google Earth instead of PowerPoint. 

The fieldwork may be virtual, but the science should still be ReaL!

  1. NASA scientists don’t visit the sites they study, yet make meaningful discoveries.  See the Mother of All VFEs.

  2. Read an article about seventh graders discovering a Martian cave!

In the STANYS VFE Workshop, we “visited” Como Lake Park using the VFEs below.

  1. Como Lake via PowerPoint

  2. Como Lake via Google Earth.

Other workshop materials:

  1. Session PowerPoint

  2. Session Packet: Virtual Fieldwork Experience Development: An Introduction & Brief How-To

  3. Generic VFE Questions