Google is opening up its Google Maps Gallery service with an expanded array of historical and contemporary maps, as well as tools for students and educators that will allow them to create and edit their own maps.

Google Maps Gallery is a repository of maps created by governmental organizations, NGOs and individuals. According to Google, as of today, the gallery will provide access to all public maps.

“Now, information ranging from this World War II veteran’s journey through the war to this description of how local governments are responding to climate change is available for everyone to explore. This expanded, publicly contributed information can give students a new way to visualize, understand, and get excited about a broad range of topics,” according to Google.

Historic map of the Western United States (1846) available through the Google Maps Gallery service.

In addition to the expanded selection of maps, Google is also offering tools through My Maps that allow students and educators to create, edit and share maps. Users can take existing maps and add overlays consisting of starting points, destinations, waypoints, markers, lines, shapes, text and multimedia objects.

“By visiting a city’s public art installments, students can take photos and videos and add it to the map, along with descriptions, analysis, and commentary,” according to a Google spokesperson. “And with easy ways to share the map, this could prove an excellent group project, where students can collaborate to create interesting and informative content, engaging with these topics in a new way.”

Google Maps Gallery and My Maps are both available now and are free of charge. Additional details can be found at maps.google.com/gallery.

Via Campus Technology

This article was featured on Campus Technology on September 16 2014 and was written by David Nagel.

About David Nagel

Executive Producer David Nagel heads up the editorial department for 1105 Media’s education publications — which include two daily sites, a variety of newsletters and two monthly digital magazines covering technology in both K-12 and higher education.

A 21-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192 or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave(higher education). A selection of David Nagel’s articles can be found on this site.

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