Tag Archive for GIS

Scholars Discuss Digital Methods in Research and Teaching

Faculty and students from Wesleyan, Binghamton University, Marlboro College, the University of Illinois and Exeter University participated in a two-day workshop titled "From Theory to Practice: Digital Methods in Research and Teaching" Sept. 7-8 in Allbritton Hall.

Faculty and students from Wesleyan, Binghamton University, Marlboro College, the University of Illinois and Exeter University participated in a two-day workshop titled “From Theory to Practice: Digital Methods in Research and Teaching” Sept. 7-8 at the Allbritton Center.

A new collaborative research hub, supported by Wesleyan’s Quantitative Analysis Center, provides faculty and students with the tools to prepare, analyze and disseminate information on movement, travel and communication in easily-accessible formats.

The Traveler’s Lab, developed by faculty members Gary Shaw, Jesse Torgerson and Adam Franklin-Lyons at Marlboro College, connects the faculty with each others’ projects, but also with students who are interested in an interdisciplinary approach to historical research.

Students Partner with Community Groups for GIS Service Learning Projects

During the fall semester, 17 Wesleyan students collaborated with a community partner to create a geographic information system and conduct data analysis and visualization related to the community partner’s objectives. GIS is a computer system for capturing, storing and displaying data related to positions on Earth’s surface.

The students, who are enrolled in the service-learning course E&ES 324 Introduction to GIS, presented their semester-long findings at a public presentation Dec. 8.

“By partnering with a local group, the students are not only learning GIS skills, they’re also helping our community,” said the course’s instructor Kim Diver, assistant professor of the practice of earth and environmental sciences.

Students learned about data collection, project management, editing, analysis and cartographic design.

Emily Hart points to a tree during her study with the Middlesex Land Trust.

Annie Flom, Emily Hart, Jess Brennan and Riordan Abrams partnered with the Middlesex Land Trust to analyze the Sumner Brook Corridor for properties that should perhaps be protected. The students reviewed parcels both up and down stream to see how to protect the water corridor, the associated green-way and various ecosystems.

While a previous GIS group has already worked on a project similar to this in Middletown, this group extended their analyses southward to the Durham/Guilford, Conn. boundary. The group created ranked overlays to determine what properties have higher scores based on their size, zoning and proximity to water.

8 Students Present Posters at Spatial Technologies Conference

Eight earth and environmental science E&ES 344 Advanced GIS students presented posters at the Northeast Arc Users Group Spring Spatial Technologies Conference, May 9 at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

The posters highlighted the students’ semester-long research and service-learning projects incorporating applications of advanced geographic information systems skills.

The project-based course E&ES 344 is taught by Kim Diver, assistant professor of the practice of earth and environmental sciences, and is part of the Academy for Project-Based Teaching and Learning hosted by the Center for Pedagogical Innovation.

“The 14 students in the course conducted independent research projects, worked with faculty on their research projects, or collaborated with community partners on service-learning projects,” Diver explained.

Half of the course’s projects were represented at the conference.

Participants included Sophie Breitbart ’16, Stephanie Ling ’16, Laura Dempsey ’16, Pierre Gerard ’16, John Hossain ’16, Jesse Tarnas ’16, Jed Siebert ’16 and Avi Stein ’17.

Ling won the poster contest with her innovative spatial humanities research on examining the spatiotemporal mobility of bishops in Medieval England.

Sophie Breitbart '16 presented her poster titled "Using GIS to Predict Effects of Landscape Metrics on Genetic Diversity in R. Atratulus." Breitbart's objective was to create a GIS-based model that predicts patterns of genetic variation for the Eastern Blacknose Dace, Rhinichthys atratulus, based on the presence of environmental factors such as land cover type and elevation.

Sophie Breitbart ’16 presented her poster titled “Using GIS to Predict Effects of Landscape Metrics on Genetic Diversity in R. atratulus.” Breitbart’s objective was to create a GIS-based model that predicts patterns of genetic variation for the Eastern Blacknose Dace, Rhinichthys atratulus, based on the presence of environmental factors such as land cover type and elevation.

Anthropology Major Cooper ’15 Co-Creates Interactive Campus Map

DeNeile Cooper '15 is majoring in anthropology, minoring in archaeology and working toward a certificate in environmental studies. She and three other members of the Class of 2015 created an interactive map for the Wesleyan that would allow Wesleyan parents, students and prospective students to navigate the campus in a more engaging manner. 

DeNeile Cooper ’15 is majoring in anthropology, minoring in archaeology and working toward a certificate in environmental studies. She and three other members of the Class of 2015 created an interactive map for the Wesleyan that would allow Wesleyan parents, students and prospective students to navigate the campus in a more engaging manner.

In this issue of News @ Wesleyan, we speak to DeNeile Cooper from the Class of 2015.

Q: DeNeile, as part of a GIS (Geographical information systems) service-learning project, you’ve been working on a interactive campus map project. What is the purpose of the map?

A: We wanted to create an interactive map for the Wesleyan website that would allow Wesleyan parents, students and prospective students to navigate the campus in a more engaging manner. The interactive map not only illustrates every building on campus to-date, but color codes them according to their usage, for example, purple buildings represent dormitory halls, blue buildings represent academic buildings and offices, and yellow buildings represent woodframe houses. In addition, each building can be clicked on to reveal a pop-up with a photo of the building, details about its contents, and links for the building’s department or office contacts. We really wanted to synthesize the strengths of the current online map with the abilities available to an interactive map.

The interactive map provides information about every building on campus.

The interactive map provides information about every building on campus. Each building is clickable and contains a pop-up that gives a photo of the building, a description, and external links to the departments, staff members, and web pages that further explain the building’s content and contact information.

Q: How did you come up with this idea? Was there a need?

A: In our Introduction to GIS course, Professor Kim Diver (visiting assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences) had been teaching us how to use GIS online to make interactive maps, or “Story Maps” that are accessible to the public. Our group, consisting of Katy Thompson ’15, Rebecca Sokol ’15, Chloe Holden ’15 and myself, worked with Wesleyan’s Physical Plant to create two updated versions of the Wesleyan campus map. We thought that this would be a perfect way to update the current map found on the Wesleyan website. We wanted to give the viewers the option to have both an aerial view of the campus and a detailed photograph and description of each building.

Q: How does the interactive campus map differ from other Wesleyan maps?

A: The interactive map takes the concept from the current online map of conveying an aerial view of the campus, but color codes the buildings by their use purpose. We hope that these colors makes it easier for new students and parents to more quickly locate the building that they want to find. Each building is clickable and contains a pop-up that gives a photo of the building, a description, and external links to the departments, staff members, and web pages that further explain the building’s content and contact information. Alternatively, the viewer can peruse each building by clicking the white up and down arrows located on the far left side of the screen. Our map is also unique in that we have extended the scope from the current map to include the many different athletic fields Wesleyan owns, and even Physical Plant and Long Lane Farm. We hope that this new map breadth will help new students get a more complete understanding of the full extension of our campus and the activities we have to offer here.