Primary and secondary schools in south-east Scotland are to begin using internet of things (IoT) technology to learn how to make sense of data.
The University of Edinburgh is running a £9.5 million project, backed by the UK and Scottish Goverments, in which sensors will be installed in classrooms to measure CO2, temperature, humidity, air pressure and light levels.
Others will be installed outdoors for readings on the weather, air quality and soil moisture.
Each device will be linked to a high performance computer at the university where the raw data will be converted into graph form which pupils can readily access.
The project is aimed at helping them to build up skills for data driven industries and improve their school environment.
The project has been piloted at two Midlothian schools – Roslin Primary and Newbattle High – where pupils have worked with engineers, data educators and technologists to design a range of classroom solutions.
It is part of a wider Data Education in Schools programme and is being funded as part of the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal.
The technology and support are now being made available to every school in Edinburgh, the Lothians, Fife and the Scottish Borders.
Developing data literacy
Susan Chapple, head of data technology at the University of Edinburgh, said: “The sensor network will introduce the secure and safe use of connected IoT sensors in the taught curriculum, and play a crucial role in aiding the development of data literacy in schools.”
UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart commented: “The UK Government’s £260 million support for Data Driven Innovation around Edinburgh is equipping people with the skills and knowledge to make the most of an increasingly data-driven world.
“This fantastic programme gives students the tools they need to learn about data and use it to improve their school environment.”
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