Crowds gather for the School of Geography and the Environment's Open Day Crowds gather for the School of Geography and the Environment's Open Day School pupil Mala Pandit teams up with Mala Geoscience (a complete coincidence!) for a bit of high-resolution ground penetrating radar.

Over 300 visitors came to the School of Geography during this year's Open Days, Wednesday 29 - Thursday 30 June.

Prospective undergraduate geographers were invited to ask our Academic Administrator Dr Lorraine Wild 'anything' about the admission process in a daily Q&A session, and Scott Orr and Hong Zhang led a discussion and demonstration on 'Physical geography and the preservation of historical buildings'. Here, students got to try out non-destructive research techniques: getting hands on with a microwave-based moisture meter, and a high-resolution ground penetrating radar (pictured right). Both of these techniques work by sending signals into subsurface of a building and measuring how much is reflecting and what is transmitted. This information is converted immediately into 3D visuals about what might be happening with regards to moisture and hidden features (such as embedded metal or cavities) in a wall.

Scott Orr explains: "With this demonstration we tried to challenge potential students' perspectives on what could be considered as ‘geography’. The students were led in a discussion of what heritage conservation is and how it can be considered both human and physical geography. We were especially keen to show that preserving historic buildings is an unexpected and interesting application of principles and tools from physical geography.

"I believe this demonstration was a great way to challenge potential students’ perceptions of geographical research, expanding to include, not only heritage conservation but, the vast array of research excellence in the School."

For more information on University of Oxford Admissions go to ox.ac.ukadmissions or visit the dedicated Undergraduate Geography webpage.

Photos: (top) crowds gather for the School of Geography and the Environment's Open Day, (centre) DPhil researcher Scott Orr demonstrates MALA geoscience on the OUCE building and (bottom) school pupil Mala Pandit teams up with Mala Geoscience (a complete coincidence!) for a bit of high-resolution ground penetrating radar.