QGIS – Workshop Plans and Updates

I’ve been hacking away for several months now at creating the day-long GIS practicum / workshop using QGIS that I hope to offer on my campus in the spring. I’ve finally finished it and am just working out the administrative details. My hope is that after completing the workshop, participants will have enough knowledge to then go out on their own and work on their own projects (with the tutorial manual to fall back on). The workshop will consist of five parts:

  • Part 1: General introduction and overview to GIS
  • Part 2: Introduction to GIS Interface (learn how to navigate the interface: adding data, layering data, symbolization, changing zoom, viewing attributes, viewing attribute table, making basic selections, difference between data formats, organizing projects and data)
  • Part 3: GIS Analysis (using site selection example in NYC, basic geoprocessing tasks, attribute table joins, plotting coordinate data, buffers, basic statistics, advanced selection)
  • Part 4: Thematic mapping (using US states as an example, map projections, coordinate systems, data classification, symbolization, calculated fields, labeling, map layouts)
  • Part 5: Going Further with GIS (exploring and evaluating online sources for free data, exploring open source and ArcGIS software resources for learning more)

I designed the workshop around QGIS 1.5, but now that version 1.6 is out I’ll have to go back and make a few tweaks. Details about the new version and recent updates are available HERE. For my purposes, the most noteworthy changes are:

  • New operators in the field calculator (like concatenate)
  • Some improvements to the measurement tools
  • The ability to view non-spatial attribute tables
  • Support for color ramps for symbolization
  • New classification schemes (including natural breaks!)

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