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GIS for Architecture

This guide is designed to assist Architecture students, faculty, and staff who are interested in using GIS in teaching or research.

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Learning ArcGIS with ESRI Web Courses

ESRI offers many training courses to help you learn how to use ArcGIS software and the various extensions that are available.  Some courses are available for anyone to take at no cost; others require a fee but are available at no-cost to WU Faculty, Staff, and Students via our ArcGIS Online Organization (see this page to active your account).  This guide will help you choose classes from their extensive listing that are included in our site license agreement and offers suggestions based on your training goals.  Click on the course  title to access more details.  Once you have identified the courses you would like to take.  See the box at left for steps to obtain an access code.  

This list also includes links to specific tutorial material from ESRI's online help system.  These step-by-step tutorials help you become familiar with the ArcGIS Desktop suite and guide you through common geoprocessing workflows.  The full ESRI Tutorials is available here, but individual sessions are mentioned below to call your attention to pertinent material.

If this sounds like you....

I need to know the basics...
I'm a first time user of ArcGIS...

The last time I used ArcGIS was 2 (or 3...or more) versions ago...

Here are some suggested classes to get you started...

Learning ArcGIS Desktop
This course offers an introduction to ArcMap and GIS concepts.  If you are new to ArcMap or need a refresher on standard tasks, this course will help you:

  • Understand basic concepts of GIS and how it is used for decision making.
  • Work with a GIS map to find features of interest, analyze patterns, and derive useful information.
  • Classify, symbolize, and label map features to support data visualization and interpretation.
  • Create and edit geographic data to accurately represent real-world objects.
  • Perform spatial analysis using queries, geoprocessing tools, and models.
  • Design high-quality maps and reports to share analysis results with others.

Getting Started with the Geodatabase
A basic introduction to geodatabase concepts. For a more detailed course, see below.

Exploring Spatial Patterns in your data using ArcGIS
This course offers some examples of guided spatial analysis.  

  • Know what questions to ask about your data before choosing an analysis tool.
  • Examine the spatial distribution of a dataset to identify clusters and spatial relationships in the data.
  • Understand the properties of a normally distributed dataset.
  • Interpret a histogram to determine the frequency distribution of a dataset.
  • Find outliers in your data using a semivariogram cloud, Voronoi map, histogram, and normal QQ plot.
  • Use a trend analysis graph to identify patterns in your data.
  • Assess which analysis tools are appropriate given the spatial distribution and values of your data.

Also view the ESRI tutorials list linked in the introduction above for material on Geocoding, Editing, using Raster datasets, and scripting geoprocessing workflows with ModelBuilder.

If this sounds like you....

I want to manage my data more carefully...
I need to take advantage of specialized data structures...

Here are some suggested classes...

Creating, Editing, and Managing Geodatabases
The geodatabase has become a more common method of storing and sharing geospatial information.  This course introduces geodatabase concepts and helps you take advantage of features and functions that are not available when using the traditional shapefile architecture.


If this sounds like you....

I want to perform route and drive time analyses...
I need to define areas based on travel distance or time...

Here are some suggested classes...

Network Analysis Using ArcGIS
The Network Analyst extension enables the solution of routing problems based on minimizing drive time or distances.  This brief introduction will help you understand the capabilities of this extension.

For a more detailed and guided introduction to Network Analysis, the ESRI tutorial provides step-by-step examples of most of the functions available in this extension.