Foundational Skills in Desktop Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Summer 2018 (First Session)
Class Size: 20
Credits per quarter

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Taught by

Ruth square
Geographic Information Systems (GIS), field deployment, workflow analysis

Undergraduate CRN: 40177

Graduate CRN: 40178

The technology of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is well-known as a way to make maps on computers. In addition, a modern GIS encompasses the efficient management of spatial data, the precision provided by coordinate systems, and the means to conduct a vast range of spatial analyses and depict complex phenomena in maps. No previous GIS experience is required. 

This course will teach students how to use the latest Esri software for the desktop computer, called "ArcGIS Pro" (  The teaching method is based on the principle of "learning by doing" - through mapping exercises that challenge students in the application of progressively more complex GIS skills. Students will learn how to add and manage data in a geodatabase, how to combine data and and optimize layers with symbols and labels, how to create maps of various types, edit geographic data and create new geodata from joining tables and calculation of attributes. The mapping exercises will provide awareness of topics such as conservation, habitat suitability, humanitarian and social challenges, hydrography, and other fields where GIS technology is used to organize data, solve problems, and make decisions. 

This class will meet one day (8 hours) per week for five weeks, using computers available at the TESC campus.  Student licenses to Esri software will also be provided at no cost to students who wish to use ArcGIS Pro on their home computers using the Windows 10 operating system. 

This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in:

Geographic Information Systems are applicable to government policy (state, federal, local, tribal), environmental and conservation careers (e.g. land trusts), field research studies, and the work of many large and small non-profits and non governmental organizations (NGO's).  


Credits per quarter


Students should be familiar with the Windows-10 operating system, including folder and file management, and typical office automation applications, such as spreadsheets and word processing.  

Online learning:
  • No Required Online Learning - No access to web tools required. Any web tools provided are optional.
Class Standing: Freshman–Graduate
Class Size: 20

Scheduled for: Weekend

Final schedule and room assignments:

Advertised schedule:

Saturdays 8 to 5 (includes a lunch break)

Located in: Olympia