Geographic Information Systems

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LATEST NEWS

The GIS Site License is now available across campus!
This means that computers with adequate RAM and hard drive space on campus will be able to run the software. GIS Site License Information

GIS stands for Geographic Information Systems. GIS can be defined as “a computer-based system to aid in the collection, maintenance, storage, analysis, output, and distribution of spatial data and information” -- GIS Fundamentals: A First Text on Geographic Information Systems (Bolstad, 2005). It has also been defined as “a set of computer tools that allows people to work with data that are tied to a particular location on the earth” (i.e. spatial data)” -- Mastering ArcGIS, (Price, 2006). There are a wide variety of applications for GIS. Some topics that have been researched in our department using GIS include tracking foreclosures in North Minneapolis, determining where the gaps are in after-school programs for K-12 students in the City of Saint Paul, finding spatial patterns of health care access for African immigrants, analyzing the spatial pattern of Lyme disease in Minnesota, determining the lack of affordable housing in Ramsey County, analyzing physical aspect of the Crow River Watershed, among many others.

Remote Sensing @ Mac

Views from space provide a unique way to learn more about geography and the environment!  Since 2011, the Geography Department has hosted two visiting faculty with remote sensing expertise.

View their collaborative work with students

The GIS teaching lab is located in Carnegie 108. It is a lab dedicated to teaching GIS courses within the Geography Department. It is outfitted with 20 Dell machines (new as of Summer 2011) and flat-panel Dell monitors. There is also a color-laser printer, SmartBoard and projector installed in the lab as well as a 9' x 15' wall map.

Students who are interested in working on independent projects and who are not Geography majors may use computers in the library that have the software. They are located in the Imaging Annex on the lower level and in the main computer lab on the PCs only. For more information about GIS on the Macalester campus.