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UNIVERSIY PARK, Pa. — This fall, Penn State University Libraries will once again offer informational sessions relating to foundational map and geospatial topics.

Some sessions may be similar or build upon topics from previous offerings, but one new session this semester will introduce users to ArcGIS Pro, a new ArcGIS Desktop application that is being adopted in the geospatial field, said Tara LaLonde, GIS specialist for Digital Scholarship and Data Services at the Donald W. Hamer Center for Maps and Geospatial Information at Pattee Library.

“These sessions aim to introduce geospatial data, GIS techniques, and software to users to engage and encourage users to apply geospatial concepts in their research, teaching and project experiences,” said LaLonde, adding that the hour-long tutorials highlight how geospatial data can be applied to multiple disciplines using a variety of software applications from library subscribed products, Esri software, and open source software.

Sessions do not require registration and are open to all Penn State students, staff, faculty and visitors, with remote viewing available online using Zoom: In addition, one-on-one map and geospatial research consultations are available through the Penn State Libraries Donald W. Hamer Center for Maps and Geospatial Information. Individual session information follows:

Geospatial Exploration: Mapping and location topics and applications 

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 3-4 p.m., 13 Pattee Library

An overview of geographic information systems (GIS) concepts relevant to applying geospatial components in projects that provide an introduction to geospatial data, introductory topics of projects, data manipulation, and geoprocessing techniques. Examples of resources and data for this session are on the Maps and Geospatial: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) guide.

Geospatial Data: Library Resources and beyond

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 4-5 p.m., 13 Pattee Library

An overview of geospatial data available from library databases, PolicyMap, SimplyAnalytics, Social Explorer, and Data-Planet. Additional United States and international organizations will be highlighted from maps and geospatial guides, and related resources to guide the user in locating geospatial data relevant to multiple disciplines. Participants are encouraged to create their own map visualizations with mapping applications during the session. Examples of resources and data for this session are on the Maps and Geospatial: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) guide, section on library databases.

Geospatial Online: Overview of ArcGIS Online

Wednesday, Oct. 3, 3-4 p.m., 13 Pattee Library 

An introduction to ArcGIS Online, a web mapping application which can be used to communicate many spatial research interests across the disciplines. Participants will explore applications created with ArcGIS Online and work with a sample dataset for Centre County, PA to learn the functionality of ArcGIS Online web maps and applications. More information on ArcGIS Online is available on the Maps and Geospatial: ArcGIS Online guide.

Geospatial Analysis: New to ArcGIS Pro

Wednesday, Oct. 3, 4-5 p.m., 13 Pattee Library

This informational session introduces and utilizes and key terminology of ArcGIS Pro software, along with examples of the functionality within the software. Maps and geospatial examples will be provided in an interdisciplinary manner for participants. More information on ArcGIS Pro is available on the Maps and Geospatial: ArcGIS Pro guide.

Geospatial Analysis: Using ArcGIS Desktop for location and demographic data

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 3-4 p.m., 211A Pattee Library

An introduction to using ArcMap software to work with location data and demographic data. Participants are encouraged to consider and/or use their own data based on research, work, and/or teaching interests. This session demonstrates general processes of working with location-based data, which may require additional instruction and follow-up in specific contexts, geographic regions, and disciplines.  Examples of resources and data for this session are on the Maps and Geospatial: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) guide.

Open Source GIS: QGIS

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 4-5 p.m., 211A Pattee Library

Learn more about QGIS, an open source GIS software option, from the QGIS website.  Participants are encouraged to bring their laptop and if desired have QGIS installed to experience first-hand some of the software’s options for working with geospatial data. More information on QGIS is located on the Maps and Geospatial: Open Source GIS guide, QGIS section.

For additional information, or if you anticipate needing accommodations or have questions about the physical access provided, contact Tara LaLonde at 814-863-5753 or in advance of your participation.