Essentials of Geographic Information Systems

(4 reviews)

star01star02star03star04star05

Jonathan Campbell, UCLA
MIchael Shin, UCLA

Pub Date: 2011

ISBN 13: 978-1-4533219-6-6

Publisher: Saylor Foundation

Read This Book

Conditions of Use

Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike
CC BY-NC-SA

Reviews

  All reviews are licensed under a CC BY-ND license.

Learn more about reviews.

star01star02star03star04star05

Reviewed by Jeffrey Widener, Assistant Professor, The University of Oklahoma, on 1/13/2015.

A new textbook covering fundamentals of geographic information systems (GIS) may cost a buyer between $25 and $150. Geographers Dr. Jonathan Campbell … read more

 

star01star02star03star04star05

Reviewed by Stephen Leisz, Associate Professor, Colorado State University, on 1/8/2016.

The book covers all the essentials of GIS as its title says, and more so. The most comprehensive parts of the book are chapters 2 through 8 which … read more

 

star01star02star03star04star05

Reviewed by Kathleen Nuckolls, Lecturer, University of Kansas, on 8/22/2016.

The book is comparable in scope to many GIS texts on the market, and would provide students with a level of detail appropriate for an introductory … read more

 

star01star02star03star04star05

Reviewed by Mary Hall-Brown, Senior Lecturer, University of North Carolina Greensboro, on 12/6/2016.

"Essentials of Geographic Information Systems" truly does cover the essentials of an introductory level GIS textbook. Campbell and Shin's discourse … read more

 

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Map Anatomy
  • Chapter 3: Data, Information, and Where to Find Them
  • Chapter 4: Data Models for GIS
  • Chapter 5: Geospatial Data Management
  • Chapter 6: Data Characteristics and Visualization
  • Chapter 7: Geospatial Analysis I: Vector Operations
  • Chapter 8: Geospatial Analysis II: Raster Data
  • Chapter 9: Cartographic Principles
  • Chapter 10: GIS Project Management

About the Book

Essentials of Geographic Information Systems integrates key concepts behind the technology with practical concerns and real-world applications. Recognizing that many potential GIS users are nonspecialists or may only need a few maps, this book is designed to be accessible, pragmatic, and concise. Essentials of Geographic Information Systems also illustrates how GIS is used to ask questions, inform choices, and guide policy. From the melting of the polar ice caps to privacy issues associated with mapping, this book provides a gentle, yet substantive, introduction to the use and application of digital maps, mapping, and GIS.

In today's world, learning involves knowing how and where to search for information. In some respects, knowing where to look for answers and information is arguably just as important as the knowledge itself. Because Essentials of Geographic Information Systems is concise, focused, and directed, readers are encouraged to search for supplementary information and to follow up on specific topics of interest on their own when necessary. Essentials of Geographic Information Systems provides the foundations for learning GIS, but readers are encouraged to construct their own individual frameworks of GIS knowledge. The benefits of this approach are two-fold. First, it promotes active learning through research. Second, it facilitates flexible and selective learning—that is, what is learned is a function of individual needs and interest.

Since GIS and related geospatial and navigation technology change so rapidly, a flexible and dynamic text is necessary in order to stay current and relevant. Though essential concepts in GIS tend to remain constant, the situations, applications, and examples of GIS are fluid and dynamic. Though this book is intended for use in introductory GIS courses, Essentials of Geographic Information Systems will also appeal to the large number of certificate, professional, extension, and online programs in GIS that are available today. In addition to providing readers with the tools necessary to carry out spatial analyses, Essentials of Geographic Information Systems outlines valuable cartographic guidelines for maximizing the visual impact of your maps. The book also describes effective GIS project management solutions that commonly arise in the modern workplace.

 

About the Contributors

Author(s)

Jonathan E. Campbell is a GIS analyst and biologist based in the Los Angeles office of ENVIRON. ENVIRON is an international environmental and health sciences consultancy that works with its clients to manage their most challenging environmental, health, and safety issues and attain their sustainability goals. Dr. Campbell has twelve years of experience in the application of GIS and biological services in conjunction with the implementation of environmental policies and compliance with local, state, and federal regulations. He has extensive experience collecting, mapping, and analyzing geospatial data on projects throughout the United States. He holds a PhD in geography from UCLA, an MS in plant biology from Southern Illinois University—Carbondale and a BS in environmental biology from Taylor University. He has been an adjunct professor of GIS and physical geography courses at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and Santa Monica College,

Michael Shin is an associate professor of geography at UCLA. He is also the director of UCLA’s professional certificate program in Geospatial Information Systems and Technology (GIST) and cochair of the Spatial Demography Group at the California Center for Population Research (CCPR). Michael earned his PhD in geography from the University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) and also holds an MA in geography and a BA in international affairs from CU as well. Michael teaches Introduction to Geographic Information Systems, Intermediate GIS, Advanced GIS, and related courses in digital cartography, spatial analysis, and geographic data visualization and analysis. He was also recently nominated to receive UCLA’s Copenhaver Award, which recognizes faculty for their innovative use of technology in the classroom. Much of Michael’s teaching materials draw directly from his research interests that span a range of topics from globalization and democracy to the social impacts of geospatial technology. He has also worked with the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations and USAID to explore and examine food insecurity around the world with GIS.