CCT335: Lab #4 – Group Mapping AssignmentAssigned: March 1st
Due: April. 5th 12PM
toronto_1894.jpeg Overview: In this lab you will be working in teams to explore harnessing Google My Maps as a collaborative research platform. As you learned during the previous exercise, Google My Maps allows you to add features (points, lines and polygons) to a Google map. In the last lab you were asked to delineate your relationship with your neighbourhood and now you are being challenged to produce a map containing considerably more information. This assignment can be realized as a large scale photo (or video) essay, a historical research project or as any number of interrogations of the Greater Toronto Area (see the exercise section below for more details on directions you might take this project).
Groups: The first step in beginning this assignment is to form a team. You may work in groups of 4 or 5 – smaller or larger groups will not be permitted. You should choose team members that you trust and (ideally) that are in your lab – swapping lab sessions so that your entire group can be present for the remainder of the semester is acceptable but computers in the lab are technically reserved for the students enrolled in that session. Once you have formed your group, make note of your team members (and student numbers) on the team signup sheet – Take note of your team number. All students must have joined a team and 'registered' to get a team number by March 10th.
Exercise: Work with your team to develop a research topic that fits the mandate of the course. Spend at least one or two lab sessions working to formalize the parameters of your investigation and consult with the instructors as you deem appropriate. Once you have determined your mandate, delegate tasks internally to begin collaboratively authoring your map. This assignment is very open-ended, some possible types of projects you might choose to pursue:
  • A photo essay similar to the first lab assignment, but with considerably more content, covering more area and with increased complexity. (e.g. exploring LED information displays the length of the 407 and not only documenting their location but providing information about related infrastructure)
  • A study of the present-day quality of a neighbourhood (e.g. team executes an extensive photo essay of the portlands of Toronto, exploring underutilized space and noting the kinds of business and activities taking place in this section of the city)
  • A historical research project on a neighbourhood/municipality within the GTA. (e.g. team does extensive historical research on Oakville, and sets out to document the present day location of various landmarks and makes historical annotations noting where important events occurred)
...or anything else that you can come up with that broadly addresses the mandate of the course (it is advised that you consult the instructors to refine your topic). As is the case with the essay, ensure that your undertaking is manageable and of sufficient complexity for a team 4-5 to work on for a month. You should view this assignment as:
  • An opportunity to explore a neighbourhood/area of the GTA or a technological infrastructure that you are not familiar with
  • As requiring a trip to the library to research
  • As an opportunity to experiment with the constraints of the My Maps interface.
  • As an opportunity to have fun!
As was the case in the previous exercise, if you want to include photographs or videos, you will need to have these available on a media sharing site such as Picasa Web Albums, flickr and YouTube. Please note: All media embedded with each map must be original – you cannot use photo or video content found online.
Statement: In addition to submitting a link to your map, each group will be required to write a 1500 word statement summarizing their venture and a 500 word synopsis of how responsibilities were delegated internally.
Submission Guidelines: Once you have finished creating your map you can submit it by email simply by clicking on send in the top right corner of your map. If your team number is odd please submit your map to; if team number is even, please send to Your map must be submitted by 12pm on April 5th and your submission is not complete until you've forwarded along your statement as a .doc or .docx to the appropriate instructor (please put all of your team members names and student numbers on this document). Late submissions will be penalized 3% per day – given the size of the teams (and the very late deadline), lateness will not be excused for medical reasons. Assignments not received by the marking deadline in mid-April will receive 0.
Evaluation: This exercise is worth 30% of the final grade. You will be graded by thought and effort you put into making your map and by the quality of your accompanying documents. See the following document for a detailed breakdown of mark distribution and our expectations.