With apologies to the Coen Brothers for loosely borrowing a classic Big Lebowski quote for the title, we’re here to announce our GIS workshop series and to let you know that we will be continuing virtually this semester. And, if there’s one thing we’ve learned from recipe blogs, it’s that all the important information goes at the very end, so scroll down or click here for more deets about the pluses and minuses of teaching virtually.
As is tradition, we will primarily focus on the desktop GIS software known as ArcGIS Pro for our Fall sessions. If you’re interested in learning about ArcGIS Online, we’ll briefly cover that in the last couple of sessions, then (as is tradition), we’ll do a deeper dive in the Spring. Not sure what the difference is? ArcGIS Pro is a Windows-only program that you install on your (Windows) computer. ArcGIS Online is a web-based GIS platform that you access through a web browser on Windows, Mac, or whatever your flavor of operating system. Mark Patterson sums it up pretty well here. Still not sure? As always, feel free to ping us with any questions.
FYI, all sessions are one hour and assume participants have no previous experience using GIS. I mean, we’re biased and think you should attend them all, but we know that’s not always feasible. Sessions will be hands-on demonstrations with step-by-step tutorials and expert assistance. All sessions will be taught on Tuesdays from 2PM to 3PM and are free and open to the UVa and larger Charlottesville community. Registration is required, please use the links below, or check out our Events page, to sign up and get a Zoom link. Late-comers are welcome and encouraged, registration remains open until the end of class.
September 6th - Making Your First Map with ArcGIS Pro
Here’s your chance to get started with geographic information systems software in a friendly, jargon-free environment. This workshop introduces the skills you need to make your own maps. Along the way you’ll get a taste of Earth’s most popular GIS software (ArcGIS) and a gentle introduction to cartography. You’ll leave with your own cartographic masterpieces and tips for learning more in your pursuit of mappiness at UVa.
September 13th - Putting Old maps and Aerial Photos on Your Map: Georeferencing in ArcGIS Pro
Would you like to see historical maps overlaid on modern aerial photography? Do you need to extract features of a map for use in GIS? Georeferencing is the first step. We will show you how to take a scan of a paper map and align in it in ArcGIS.
September 20th - Getting Your Data on a Map
Do you have a list of Lat/Lon coordinates you would like to see on a map? We will show you how to do that, and more. ArcGIS Pro makes it easy to take your tabular data and generate stylized points on a map.
September 27th - Points on Your Map: Street Addresses and More Spatial Things
Do you have a list of street addresses crying out to be mapped? Have a list of zip codes or census tracts you wish to associate with other data? We’ll start with addresses and other things spatial and end with points on a map, ready for visualization and analysis.
October 4th - Taking Control of Your Spatial Data: Editing in ArcGIS Pro
Until we perfect that magic “extract all those lines from this paper map” button we’re stuck using editor tools to get that job done. If you’re lucky, someone else has done the work to create your points, lines, and polygons but maybe they need your magic touch to make them better. This session shows you how to create and modify vector features in ArcGIS Pro, the world’s most popular geographic information systems software. We’ll explore tools to create new points, lines, and polygons and to edit existing datasets.
October 11th - Easy Demographics
Need to make a quick demographic map? This workshop will show you how easily navigate Social Explorer. This powerful online application makes it easy to create maps with contemporary and historic census data and religious information.
October 18th - Introduction to ArcGIS Online
With ArcGIS Online, you can use and create maps and scenes, access ready-to-use maps, layers and analytics, publish data as web layers, collaborate and share, access maps from any device, make maps with your Microsoft Excel data, customize the ArcGIS Online website, and view status reports.
October 25th - ArcGIS Story Maps
ArcGIS StoryMaps is a spatially enabled website/application builder that allows you to add narrative and multimedia context to your ArcGIS Online maps (or locational context to your narrative and multimedia content, depending on how your brain works). Whether telling a story, giving a tour or comparing historical maps, ArcGIS StoryMaps is an easy-to-use builder that creates polished presentations.
Workshops will be recorded and made available for asynchronous learning, virtually eliminating the ever-present scheduling conflict. If you can’t attend in real-time, give them a watch when your schedule allows. Hit a snag and need a refresher? Feel free to watch again, as many times as you want. Tune in for some GIS and chortle quietly at our WFH hair and mediocre dad jokes.
Unfortunately, because we can’t handout laptops to our attendees, we’re unable to provide ArcGIS Pro to non-UVA users. To be clear, ArcGIS Pro is NOT required to attend the sessions, but it is required to complete the hands-on exercises from the first six sessions on your own. The final two sessions cover ArcGIS Online, which is browser-based, and will be made available to everyone.
- For our non-UVA attendees, unfortunately, we’re unable to provide ArcGIS Pro licenses. Our suggestion would be to take advantage of one of the public computer labs on Grounds. If you are hesitant to use an indoor public space, another option is to acquire a personal use license. We know this isn’t ideal for some, and we apologize for the inconvenience.
- For our attendees with a Mac computer, ArcGIS Pro is not Mac compatible. There are several ways to run Windows on a Mac, including a multi-boot utility like BootCamp or a virtual machine, both of which require expertise we’re unable to provide. For UVA affiliates, the simplest solution is to take advantage of UVA’s Remote Apps which provides access to Pro.