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GeoTrail to cap finals of SPH Geography Challenge 2003

March 10, 2003 – GeoTrail, which was a hit with students at the SPH Geography Challenge last year, will make a comeback in this year’s finals.

Students from 20 secondary schools who have made it to the final lap, will hit the streets across Singapore and apply what they have learnt in textbooks to gather clues and complete the game.

This year’s GeoTrail finals will kick off at the National University of Singapore (NUS) at 8.30am on March 14 and end at the same venue at 4pm.

The SPH Geography Challenge 2003, now into its seventh year, is organised by the NUS Department of Geography and the NUS Geographical Society.

Explaining the emphasis on the trail segment, Associate Professor Victor Savage, Head of NUS Department of Geography, said: "Fieldwork is what geographers are best identified with. Although we can get geographical knowledge from books, nothing beats the excitement of being out in the field and reading the landscape."

Ms Irene Ngoo, Assistant Vice President of SPH Corporate Relations, added: "The introduction of GeoTrail has blazed a new path into this popular competition series. It helps to foster community spirit as the participants can interact with the public while out in the field.

"GeoTrail is also fun and exciting because it teaches students to be street-wise, something which they can’t get from textbooks. They have to think fast on the spot and use their navigation skills to win as a team."

This year’s competition attracted 87 secondary schools, up from 72 last year. Each school is represented by four students. At the preliminary round, students had to answer 40 multiple choice questions on geography and work as a team to solve a geographical problem. Twenty schools, five from each zone, have qualified for the finals.

Scores from the GeoTrail finals make up 70 per cent of the competition with the remaining 30 per cent scored in the preliminary round. In last year’s competition, defending champion Raffles Institution kept its title.

At the GeoTrail finals, teams will have to visit at least one checkpoint each in the north, south, east and west of Singapore and two other checkpoints of their choice. Teams can go on to attempt bonus checkpoint questions after fulfilling this minimum requirement. At each checkpoint, they will be given a set of questions on specific sites, current affairs and national education or be asked to participate in interactive activities with the public. The scores for each team will be determined by the number of correct answers submitted at each checkpoint.

Here are the 20 schools that made it to the GeoTrail finals, in no particular order.

North Zone: Anderson Secondary School, Evergreen Secondary School, Ahmad Ibrahim Secondary School, CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ School, Orchid Park Secondary School

South Zone: St. Joseph’s Institution, Raffles Girls’ Secondary School, Singapore Chinese Girls’ School, Raffles Institution, Anglo-Chinese School (Independent)

East Zone: Tanjong Katong Girls’ School, Dunman High School, Victoria Secondary School, Geylang Methodist Secondary, Paya Lebar Methodist Girls’ Secondary School

West Zone: Bukit Panjang Government High School, Nanyang Girls’ High School, Methodist Girls’ School, River Valley High School, The Chinese High School

A separate GeoPoster segment is introduced at this year’s competition for students to express their creativity through posters on the theme – Geography of Terrorism – so students can apply their geographical knowledge to a pertinent current issue. Fifty-six schools responded to the inaugural segment.

The winners of the SPH Geography Challenge 2003 will be announced at a prize presentation ceremony on March 15 at 10am at the MOE Edutorium.

The SPH Geography Challenge is in its seventh year with SPH as the event’s main sponsor. The National Geographic Channel is the co-sponsor of SPH Geography Challenge 2003, which is supported by MOE, Ministry of Environment, Singapore Environment Council and Geography Teachers’ Association of Singapore.

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Limited.

Journalists, photographers and camera crew are invited to the prize presentation ceremony on Saturday, March 15, at 10am at the MOE Edutorium (51 Grange Road). For more information, please contact:

Esther Low
Assistant Manager
Corporate Relations
Singapore Press Holdings Limited
Tel: 6319 1280
Dr T. C. Chang
Assistant Professor
Department of Geography
National University of Singapore
Tel: 6874 6808

Main board listed Singapore Press Holdings Limited is the leading news and information provider, offering quality content for print, Internet, TV and radio. It is licensed to publish 15 newspapers in the four official languages and six lifestyle periodicals. Everyday, 2.78 million individuals, or 90 per cent of people above 15 years old, read one of 15 newspapers published by SPH while online publication of its six main dailies enjoy some 120 million page views a month. SPH has ventured into the broadcast medium and operates two popular free-to-air TV channels, Channel U in Chinese and Channel i in English.