Posted in ICT

Digimap for Schools

On my visit to the Scottish Learning Festival last year, I came across Digimap for Schools, a resource that has been developed here in Edinburgh.  I was very impressed with the resource, which basically brings Ordinance Survey maps to life.  There is a free trial available to schools, and I know that a few establishments in the city have signed up to the service already – so why not give it a try?  Below, Carol Blackwood who works on Digimap for Schools has provided some more information on how the resource works.  If you are using this resource already, please comment below with your thoughts – it would be great to get some feedback!

Digimap for Schools
Digimap for Schools showing the location of Tynecastle High School

Digimap for Schools is an online mapping service providing Ordnance Survey digital mapping to schools.  A wide range of mapping is available from small scale regional mapping to MasterMap Topography® which is the most detailed mapping that OS produce for Great Britain and shows a fantastic level of detail.  Digital equivalents of the popular Landranger and Explorer paper maps are also available, providing easy access to curriculum relevant mapping for the whole of Great Britain.

Being an online service, there is no software installation or setup required or any storage of mapping data.  Schools access Digimap for Schools using a single username and password (no need to issue each pupil with a different login!) anywhere that they have an internet connection and a computer or iPad.

In addition to the range of mapping available, Digimap for Schools offers a suite of measurement and annotation tools.  Measuring tools allow you measure distances and areas of the map.  The Annotation Tools allow users to add their own information to the maps with markers, lines, areas, text and photos.  The options for being creative and adding your own information are endless!  Plotting routes to school, creating a map of tourism features in the Cairngorms or a land use map of your local high street or shopping area are just a few of the examples that school’s use Digimap for Schools and the annotation tools for.

Any map that you create on screen can be printed or saved.  Printable maps can be created in various formats (PDF, PNG or JPG), A4 or A3 size and in landscape or portrait orientation.  Creating a printable map allows you to save a copy to access offline, to print a paper version or insert into a Word document report.  Saving maps means that pupils can create maps as homework and their teacher can access those maps for marking.  Or, teacher’s can prepare maps to use in class in advance and have them easily available once logged into the service.

The mapping and tools available make Digimap for Schools a cross school resource that has relevance in geography, maths, biology, history, modern studies and PE.  The use of ease and interactive nature make it a valuable service suitable for all stages of education.

The Digimap for Schools community is ever increasing with a wide spread of schools subscribed and using the service across GB.  You can view which schools are subscribed from the ‘Discover our Community’ page accessed from the Digimap for Schools homepage

Digimap for Schools has evolved over the last few years since it was launched with the addition of many tools and functions.  This will continue in 2014 with the addition of historical maps from the National Library of Scotland (NLS)

A free trial version is available from the homepage.  Go to and click on the ‘Free Trial’ link on the left.  The free trial shows mapping for a small geographic area, but you can view examples of all the mapping and tools available.

Digimap for Schools is a subscription service, details of prices and how to subscribe can be found by clicking on the ‘Subscribe’ link on the homepage.

For further information or advice, please contact the EDINA Helpdesk at

Digimap for Schools is developed and hosted by EDINA at the University of Edinburgh, as a collaborative venture with Ordnance Survey and JISC Collections.


Teacher at the Keycomm Resource Centre in Edinburgh, Scotland. Love my wee family, my cats, my friends. Passionate about inclusive education, nice red wine and travelling.

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