Medgar Evers College
Department of Physical Environmental and Computer Sciences
Introduction To GIS
Geographic Information Systems
CS 319/ ENVS 319/ PHS319
Days: Tuesdays/ Wednesdays 12:30pm – 4:00pm
Thursdays 1:00pm – 4:00pm (City College)
Instructor: Dr. Winfield Sylvester
Text: 1. Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems, 2nd Edition,
Michael N. DeMers, John Wiley and Sons
2. Getting To Know Arc View GIS, Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc.
To The Student: There is growing awareness of the inherent geophysical nature of some of the most important problems facing our world today. The geographic roots of GIS follow a lineage of nearly 2,500 years of geographic exploration and research. In the early 1960s, a body of knowledge began to be formalized as a set of computer tools to input, store, retrieve, analyze and output natural information for the Canadian Geographic Information System, inaugurated efforts around the world to formalize and automate geographic principles to solve spatial problems related to the managing of natural resources.
After nearly 40 years of development, GIS (Geographic Information Systems) is now a mainstay for solving geographic problems not only for natural resources, but also for a myriad of physical and human endeavors: from crime and disease analyses and prevention to emergency vehicle research and spatial data exploration; and from utility management to military simulations. The potentials of GIS are enormous and still growing.
Scope of the GIS Course: GIS is about thinking geographically. It opens our awareness of examining and analyzing the world around us. Its principal task is analysis and decision making. The course is meant as an overview of the discipline at a basic level. It provides a set of basic concepts upon which, students will, through the pursuit of additional work and practical experience, develop new applications, new theories, and new software. The language and tools of GIS will be explored in these sessions. The Arc View GIS software from ESRI will be demonstrated and practiced in the laboratory.
Topic 1: Introduction to Automated Geography
Topic 2: Spatial Analysis: the Foundation of Modern Geography
Topic 3: The Map as a Model of Geographic Data: The Language of Spatial
ThinkingTopic 4: Cartographic and GIS Data Structures
Topic 5: Input, Storage and Editing
Topic 6: Analysis: Inside GIS
Topic 7: GIS Output
Topic 8: GIS Design
Demonstration and Hands-on GIS
Session 1: Arc View Basics
Session 2: Working with Spatial Data
Session 3: Querying Data
Session 4: Managing Tabular Data
Session 5: Analyzing Spatial Relationships
Session 6: Presenting Information
Session 7: Creating Your own Data
Recommended Text: Arc View GIS Exercise Book: Pat Hohl and Brad Mayo, 2nd
Edition (Onward Press)