Geography 4050/8056

Geographic Information Systems I


Dr. Michael P. Peterson

COURSE DESCRIPTION
This course provides an introduction to the display, manipulation and management of geographic information. Topics include geographical data input, storage, maintenance, analysis and retrieval. Current programs for GIS are introduced and students are encouraged to pursue independent work. Lectures will place an emphasis on the concepts that underlie the software. One of the major objectives of the course is to make the student familiar with the current status of GIS and GISci. In addition to the textbook, we will look at material on the World Wide Web to understand some of the current research in the field.

COURSE CONDUCT
Lectures and discussions, based upon reading assignments and designed to supplement such readings, form the core of the course. Students are held responsible for all material covered in class and all assignments and, therefore, absent themselves at their risk. Missing an exam will result in a grade of zero for such work.

READINGS
Bolstad, Paul (2005) GIS Fundamentals. 2nd edition, Eider Press.

Individual chapters: Clarke, Keith (1996) Getting Started with Geographic Information Systems, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

EXAMS
Two exams will be given. The exams consist mostly of short answer and essay questions.

EXERCISES
A number of exercises will be assigned. These exercises are intended to assist you in gaining an understanding of the material covered and are an indispensable part of the course.

FINAL PROJECT
Students will pursue an applied or analytical project that will presented as a web-formatted paper (10 to 15 pages). The project could take the form of a demonstration of how a GIS program can be used to analyze a certain set of data. Ideas for a final project will be presented in class.

GRADING

 

 Undergraduate

 Graduate
 Exercises/Web Page

 30%

 20%
 Lecture Notes

 10%
 Final Project

 25%

 20%
Presentation

 ­

 5%
 Lab Introduction

 ­

 5%
 Mid-Term Exam

 20%

 20%
 Final Exam

 25%

 20%

Grading is carried through on the total points accumulated with 90%, 80%, 70% and 60% representing the cutoffs between letter grades.