Exam Layout

On the exam there will be:

some (not many) multiple choice
fill in the blank questions
short answer
short written tasks – short essay or combination of short paragraph questions

In this class we covered many GIS concepts and techniques and how these can be combined to solve problems proposed in the social science field. The questions for this exam can be taken from your lectures, labs and tutorials.

This does not mean however that you are required to provide the explicit steps you are to take in a piece of software to provide desired results. You can be expected to explain what manipulations you can perform with data to create valid spatial and descriptive layers. In other words you are not required to know which buttons you pushed with your mouse but it would be beneficial to know what steps are necessary to create these layers.

Review Topics for Final Exam

The following groups of information

data management:

– understand how you store or find data – your home folders or in the labs
– what files are required for GIS layers (i.e. shapefiles)
– relationship between files and layers, features and feature types


– Layers
– Features
– Feature types
– Points, lInes, Polygons
– Simple Features Specifications
– Clean data

Spatial Operations – Spatial relationships – Spatial Overlays

– operations expressed in the lab and review sessions about operations such
as buffering, clipping etc.
– choosing the proper operations and perhaps explaining why that procedure was used.

Raster – DEM topics

We worked with raster data a fair bit, especially elevation raster data

– definition of raster data
– continuous and discrete data
– how data can be layered
– derived layers from a DEM and how they can be used (querying slope

Working with tables

Table manipulation and joins were heavily used in this course

– manipulating data through different stages to bring into a GIS (i.e. Dissemination Area stats downloads )
– making use of tables – basic theory
– not procedures just data management concepts

Stats Can and Neighbourhood (Small Area) Analysis

– Neil Hanlon’s lectures
– key points of his lectures and how we could apply some of his topics
– the relationship between stats can layers (the Stats Can Hierarchical chart)
– boundary files
– Stats Can census data (long form, short form – 2011 issues etc)
– Relationship between stats can layers

Proximity Analysis

– Select by location
– Buffering analysis (network analysis)

Data quality

– Accuracy of spatial layers and the precision of data that was used to create
– Information gathered for attribute data
– Scale of information
– Data suppression rounding
– Reading link of the data quality lecture
– Errors with data (Foote and Huebner paper on Penn State link)

History of GIS

– difference between historical cartography and GIS
– definition of a GIS can be used to determine if historical research was GIS
– Digital age and GIS (more recent history)
– classical to integrative styles in GIS
– key points along the decades
– relevance to social science

Data for Decision (film)

– what was the purpose of the video (why was Roger Tomlinson presenting this “new” technology
– do we still use some of the initial design and techniques as used by the CLI and the CGIS
– what were the problems that could be addressed through the creation of the CGIS
– clean and built data
– gender roles for those involved in the CGIS

GIS as an Integrator

– what are you perspectives on how GIS has changed since its digital beginnings in the 1960s
– How has GIS or spatial technologies enabled or improved how a broad range of users can communicate with each other and with the world in general
– Can you explain or give examples of how data and information can be modelled or represented using these technologies, theories or perspectives
– Can you explain an integrative approach to using GIS
– Where are we now in regards to use of GIS (classical or other..) with other media – such as those using the web

Categories: GEOG 204