Tools and Tips (Training Materials)

This page contains links to a series of training materials which give learners an overview of different types of mapping tools, tips for collecting spatial data, and lists of spatial data and GIS software resources.

These materials provide a good overview of the types of mapping software available and the basic features of each.  There is also a help sheet providing valuable information on the collection of spatial data using a GPS receiver, and lists of online spatial data sources and online training.  (documents are in PDF format and is less than 1Mb in size, except where noted)

  • Overview of QGIS -- QGIS is a free and open source GIS software package which is available in a number of different languages and has a growing and global user community
  • Overview of GeoDa -- GeoDa is a free software package that is useful for exploratory spatial data analysis
  • Collecting GPS Coordinates -- a short, illustrated document which provides tips for collecting data points in the field using a hand-held GPS reciever
  • List of Spatial Data Sources -- when mapping your data, it is good to have base data such as administrative unit boundaries, rivers, and roads.  Much of this information can be found online, and links are provided in this document.
  • List of GIS training and mapping tools -- many available mapping tools are free; most provide online support and training.  Links to useful websites are provided in this document.
  • Mapping Tools and Resources -- this presentation provides a good overview of several different types of mapping and GIS software and illustrates the features of each. (7Mb PPT)