Abstract : Geomatics, i.e. the use of digital technologies to acquire, process, visualize and communicate geographic information, includes many fields of application in the professional world. The use of these technologies (GPS tracking system, virtual globes on the web, Geographic Information Systems) begins to spread in everyday life and in education. We examine here questions posed by the introduction of geomatic tools in geography education. GIS integration in secondary education is not without raising many questions falling within the scope of geography, epistemology, didactics, but also of computer science, cartography, cognitive psychology, sociology of uses. It stirs up old debates on the role of the map in geography teaching and learning, but also raises the issue of geographic information technologies as a new tool for the geographer, as a different way to conceive, to teach and to learn geography.
This research aims, on the one hand, to understand the uses and stakes of cartography and Geographic Information Systems in geography classroom, and on the other hand, to build and test a GIS educational platform that promotes various kinds of geographical reasoning. The approach is in line with the perspective of the “genesis of geomatic uses” in secondary education. Through visual exploration and problem solving, combining inductive and hypothetico-deductive approaches, the challenge is to overcome ritualized and naturalized practices of the scholar map, in order to promote a new geographic education.