Advanced ENVIRONMENTAL GIS
Thur 6:30 - 9:20
Instructor: Nicholas A. Procopio, Ph.D., GISP
e-mail – firstname.lastname@example.org
This course is structured to build upon techniques and skills learned in an introductory level GIS class. This advanced course is technically oriented and will introduce high-level geospatial analyses in an environmental science context. This course will provide instruction and theory of geospatial modeling, mapping, and future trends.
This course is also designed to encourage students to think more broadly about the use of spatial technologies and practices and how they influence people and the environment. Students will be required to develop an independent project which shows strong understanding of geospatial applications and is more advanced than independent project completed in an introductory level class.
The class period will include some lecture material and laboratory assignments that provide you with an opportunity to work with GIS software. Focus will be put on providing class time to focus on and develop independent projects.
- Expand and refine students’ understanding of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) utility and expand their awareness of GIS applications;
- Become proficient in the use of GIS tools to build maps that are purposeful and effectively convey the intended message;
- Use GIS to study an environmental/biological problem;
- Gain enhanced spatial analysis and GIS modeling skills;
- Reinforce the importance of map projection, datums, and coordinate systems; and
- Design and implement an independent GIS project to serve as a “portfolio piece” that demonstrates the student’s GIS capabilities.
A formal introductory level GIS class is a prerequisite. You NEED to be a proficient computer user. Basic understanding of Microsoft windows directory structure and how applications work in that environment are necessary skills.
Allen, D. W. 2013. GIS Tutorial 2: Spatial Analysis Workbook. ESRI Press.
de Smith et al. Geospatial Analysis - A comprehensive guide. A free web-based GIS resource http://www.spatialanalysisonline.com/
Bolstad. GIS Fundamentals 4th Edition: A first text on GIS.
Harder and Brown. 2017. The ArcGIS book: 10 big ideas about applying the science of where. 2nd Ed. http://www.TheArcGISBook.com
A free software trial can be accessed from www.esri.com/StudentEdition
Other Useful References:
Longley et al. Geographic Information Systems and Science 3rd Edition.
Law and Collins. Getting to Know ArcGIS 4th Edition.
Gorr, W. L. and K. S. Durland. 2013. GIS Tutorial 1: Basic Workbook. ESRI Press.
Allen, D. W. and J. M. Coffey. 2010. GIs Tutorial 3: Advanced Workbook. ESRI Press.
ESRI Guide to GIS analysis v1 Geographic Patterns and Relationships
ESRI Guide to GIS analysis v2 Spatial measurements and statistics
ESRI Guide to GIS analysis v3 Modeling sustainability and interactions
You will be evaluated based on several components. The percentage each component will contribute to your final grade is shown below:
Reading Assignments 25%
Laboratory Exercises 25%
Independent Assignment 40%
Class Participation 10%
Reading Assignment (25%):
Students will review three GIS-focused journal articles during the semester and you will be expected discuss them in class. Summaries and reviews will be submitted as discussion threads in Blackboard. In your submission you must include the full citation of the article including a link to the abstract. Summarize the article highlighting points of interest, useful applications, etc. A list journals featuring GIS-related content can be found here. Many are available electronically from the Drexel Libraries.
The laboratory portion of the course allows students to perform GIS operations using the leading GIS software, ArcView. The laboratory portion will take place immediately following the lecture. The laboratory exercises will be completed by utilizing the required laboratory text or online resources.
Additional training exercises must be completed in addition to those performed in class. Students must complete at least 3 training courses available from ESRI training. These can include “Lessons”, “Training Seminars”, or “Web Courses”. You must submit a copy of the certificate issued upon completion. (https://www.esri.com/training/catalog/search/)
Independent Assignment (40%)
Each student will draft and complete an independent project. Students will be required to complete a report and analysis detailing how GIS can be used in their studies or current research. Students will develop a project that incorporates advanced GIS techniques to answer a specific question. Final products will include a formal report and a poster. Results will be presented to the class in the form of a short presentation and poster overview. Your final write-up should be formatted like a research paper and include a background/introduction, methods, results, conclusion, and references.
Presentations will be graded on three components; how you handle yourself, content of the discussion (i.e. does your content convey your message), and describe your use of GIS techniques. The paper will will incorporate readability, organization, contents (as above), use of GIS, and inclusion of references, grammar and punctuation.
Your Independent project will include:
- The use of advanced techniques in ArcGIS or any other GIS package. You must use a professional grade GIS, not an image processing package, not Adobe Creative Suite, not Matlab, etc., although they may be used throughout your project.
- Creation of a poster presentation or web site. This will include a description of your analyses.
- Submission of a 5 – 10 page discussion of your project. Your paper should discuss:
- Background/introduction, methods, results, conclusion, and references.
- A general discussion of your findings and a summary or conclusion. What is the answer to your question or your final decision and why? What future steps need to be taken?
- Include a title page, abstract, full list of references, and appropriate figures and/or tables.
- Presentation of your poster or your web site to the class.
Class Participation and Attendance (10%)
Class participation includes answering questions when asked, participating in class discussions, and exhibiting appropriate non-disruptive behavior. You will be given class participation for each week of class. You will automatically receive full credit for class participation. It is your responsibility to keep the credit. You will lose credit for class participation if you are disruptive or exhibit inappropriate behavior.
· Turn cell phones off! Text messaging is obvious from my vantage point in the front of the class.
· Laptops may be used – but avoid social media sites.
· Participation points may be deducted whether I directly tell you about it or not.
· Leaving class early does not count as having attended.
· Please review the University policies on academic dishonesty at: www.drexel.edu/provost/policies/academic_dishonesty.asp, and http://drexel.edu/studentlife/judicial/honesty.html.
· Students with disabilities requesting accommodations need to present a current accommodation verification letter (AVL) to the Professor before accommodations can be made. AVLs are issued by the Office of Disability Services (ODS). The ODS can be contacted at: www.drexel.edu/ods, by phone at 215-895-1401, or TTY at 215-895-2299. For further information, see: http://www.drexel.edu/ods/student_reg.html
· Please review the University policies on dropping a course at: http://www.drexel.edu/provost/policies/course_drop.asp
Introductions and review
Query and manipulate data
Finding what’s nearby
Vector Spatial Analyses
Analyzing spatial patterns:
Neighbors, clustering, spatial correlation
Remote sensing and raster analyses
(Bayesian and Kriging)
Making a good map!
Presentation of Independent Projects
Presentation of Independent Projects
Bolstad 492-500; de Smith 6.1-6.4 link
De Smith 5.4-5.5 link
Bolstad 529-531; 534-545; De Smith 6.5 - 6.7 link
Allen 1.3, 2.2
Allen 5.2-5.3, 6.2
Allen 8.1, 8.4; 9.1-9.2
Get started with imagery; GTK Chap 20a-b
Written reports due
Article 1 review (BB)
Article 2 review (BB)
Article 3 review (BB)
Three Esri Trainings due
Instructions with a link to download ArcGIS software is here. (Version 10.4 for Desktop is recommended)
See me for a 1 year trial code
See me for a 1 year trial code