Westminster College       

Instructor:     Dr. Alan Goldin, Room Coulter 2xx
        Office hours: M,W,F 10 A.M.; H 11 A.M.
        Phone: 592-5015 (
Class:        MWF 1, T2-5, Coulter 333

Basic study of Geographic Information Systems, particularly Arc-GIS software and applications to a variety of disciplines.  Course will involve extensive hands-on use of ArcGIS and the development of maps and projects in several fields.

--> PURPOSE OF THE COURSE:  GIS is a versatile tool.  It can help locate new business, track environmental degradation, help marketers to find new markets, help farmers to determine the best soils on their land to grow healthier crops and judge appropriate fertilizer applications, keep spatial records of highway accidents and earthquakes and the reasons for these (time of day, size of street, type of intersection, location of fault zone), locate where day care is needed based on schools and populations of school-aged children, locations of particular types of cemeteries or the gravestones in those cemeteries, produce maps of forest stands based on age and timber type to ensure sustainability of harvest, locates shelters and allows the distribution of food and medicine during hurricanes, maps phone service to determine downed telephone lines.  We will learn how to use GIS through ArcView software and query various problems in these fields.  Students will develop hypotheses to solve problems in various fields above and will expand it to include their areas of interest.

Dates             Topic                                            Text    
Aug & Sept    Learning the basics of GIS ArcView software    Getting Started
Oct-Dec    Engage in GIS lessons in geology, physical     Mapping Our World
geography, political geography, economics,
demography, meteorology and expand into
topics of student interest

Required: Mapping Our World.  GIS Lessons for Educators.  Lyn Malone, Anita M. Palmer, and Christine L. Voigt.  ESRI Press, Redlands, CA  2002.

Required: Getting Started with ArcGIS.  Bob Booth and Andy Mitchell.  ESRI Press, Redlands, CA. 2001.

        1. Complete lessons of the 19 exercises in Mapping Our World.  These will be done on a regular basis throughout the semester.

    2. Learn ArcVIEW GIS and complete one map per week during our study of Getting Started with ArcGIS.  These will be done on a regular basis throughout the semester.
    3. Two major projects of the student's interest using GIS.  These will include maps and possibly exercises.  One is due November 1 and the other during finals week.

    4. Class will visit and interact with agencies and organizations in the Fulton area that use GIS and help to transfer their applications to Westminster by means of their projects.

--> GRADE DETERMINATION:            

     Exercises from Mapping Our World    50%
     Weekly maps from Getting Started    15%
     Two major outside projects        35%