Teaching the Old Methods 

Professional Surveyor Boards » Education » Teaching the Old Methods

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Posts: 51
Location: Frederick, USA

Joined: 7/8/2008
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The January issue of PSM will be about education in surveying, and one article questions when we should stop teaching the old methods.  I'm looking forward to hearing what surveyors and educators say about this.
  Monday, November 17, 2008 at 1:29:37 PM
Posts: 4

Joined: 11/17/2008
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The tools have changed, and will continue to evolve.

Our methods change?

I don't think so. We will still be searching the historical record. The tool maybe in an electronic format and retrieve the documents from a distant location, but the search will still be conducted.

Uncovering field evidence, talking to adjoiners, preserving and perpetuating evidence, and documenting our findings aren't new.

The tools we use have changed and will continue to change, but the fundemental reasons for being licensed as land surveyors hasn't changed. We are the ones who analyze the records and the evidence, and render our professional opinion. That's not changing. There is no new technology to render an opinion for the surveyor.

Let's not forget what our role in protecting the public is.
  Monday, November 17, 2008 at 9:59:53 PM
Thomas LaCorte
Posts: 62

Joined: 10/17/2008
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I think I know what your getting at here. Plumb Bob, Chain, Temperature correction, Tension bar,ect.ect.ect. Well, I believe it is a good idea to know the old methods and here are two reasons why.  Example 1: An Old party chief can apply his knowledge in such things to find index errors or errors that a party chief may have created in the past (before distance meters) by having a chain with six "mends" in it or discovering that a certain party chief never applied temperature corrections. With the index error of a certain party chief "known" you can find that sandstone monument that nobody else can find with the metal detector.(I have done this)Example 2: A New Party chief has his total station break down so he breaks out the chain and Plumb Bob. If he is not properly trained he will create a disaster! Better for him to call it a day! All in All I think we should still teach the old methods because with out them we create "data collectors" and not "land surveyors."
  Tuesday, November 18, 2008 at 8:04:34 PM
Dave Lindell
Posts: 16
Location: Pasadena, USA

Joined: 10/20/2008
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There are no old methods.

There are old surveyors using old tools and equipment.

There are a lot of tried-and-true methods, many court-sanctioned.

As an Adjunct Professor teaching from both of Brown's books (Evidence and Procedure...and Boundary Control for Surveyors) I never teach how to survey, only how to analyze data.

I thoroughly agree with Thomas.  How can you recognize a 33 foot bust in a section line if you never knew a 33 foot chain was used?
  Tuesday, November 18, 2008 at 11:53:45 PM
Posts: 13

Joined: 1/4/2009
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how many feet are in a tomohawk throw?
  Monday, January 05, 2009 at 10:09:23 AM
Thomas LaCorte
Posts: 62

Joined: 10/17/2008
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There are only two feet in a tomohawk throw!!..............................................and they belong to the person throwing the tomohawk!!.......................or did mean to ask what is the distance of a tomohawk throw?.........:)......I have no idea!!! 
  Sunday, January 11, 2009 at 7:53:04 PM
Posts: 11

Joined: 1/2/2009
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I am a student and often frustated on some of the old things they teach.. but I only have two terms left now and understand how important it is to know the original way to survey. And the original way to calculate. Knowing these old survey techniques could save a lot of money and time. If you are out in the middle of no where and you instument for some reason is not working.. will you be able to continue your job? Or make the time and money to drive back? Not to mention being able to understand recording of surveys that have been done in the past.
  Sunday, May 31, 2009 at 12:35:42 PM
Posts: 9

Joined: 5/30/2012
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@ CW: You've explained it very well. 

The tools used keep on changing but the way of teaching remains the same. Of course, only those effective ways.
  Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 2:35:14 AM

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