FOSS4G-Asia 2023 Seoul

Teaching Open Source for Vietnamese students – my two-year’s experience
11-30, 17:40–18:00 (Asia/Seoul), Seoul Archive

Vietnamese students may feel differently about Open Source environment, depending on each student and their level of technological understanding. Especially, Free Open Source Software for Geospatial (FOSS4G) allows students to access and explore new technology easily, with plenty of applications in daily life and the society. It provides diverse and rich resources for students, being able to read, research and participate in the development of FOSS4G and helps students expand their knowledge and skills.

Subjects currently taught for students of the Information Systems Program include Open GIS Software Developments, GIS Programming Techniques, Data structure and Algorithms, and Data Mining with Open Source Resources. All the courses use Open Source software and Open data for labs and practice. Google Earth Engine codes development using Java Scripts and Python is introduced as extra selective course. QGIS Plugins development with Python is included as Mini-projects as well.

FOSS4G has a growing and supportive community that contributes through problem solving, mentoring, and evaluation of solutions. This gives students the opportunity to learn from experienced people, creating a positive community learning environment. This also enables students to create personal projects and applications, while also practicing software development and creativity skills. However, not all students can feel positive about Open Source. Some students may have difficulty reading and understanding source codes, or a feeling that they do not have enough time and knowledge to contribute to Open Source projects.

Our Vietnamese students have many ways to approach open source such as: learning from university curriculum, from various trainings online or offline, joining online communities and forums in the internet such as GitHub, GitLab and Bitbucket, just to name a few. They may participate in competitions and events like hackathons or software development competitions to practice their skills and learn deeper in the field. Free courses on online platforms like Coursera, edX or Codecademy are quite useful for beginners, where they can follow blogs and documentation. But most importantly, students should set goals and have a strong consent to study, work actively and continuously in this area, and that is indeed the goal of our FOSS4G curriculum at university.

Born in Hue, Vietnam. Study at Hanoi University. Post-graduate study at Stockholm University and AIT Thailand. Recently work at Institute of Resources Geography, Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology. Visiting lecturer at the International University HCMC and the HCMC University of Natural Sciences. Fields of interest: Digital Image Processing, Applications of Geoinformatics in Natural Resources management, Teaching and Promoting Open Source.