GLG410--Computers in Earth and Space Exploration

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Introduction to Geographic Information Systems

The question: to teach with GIS or to teach about GIS?

What is GIS?

How have we used GIS?

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) applications in the Active Tectonics Research Group

Learning aids for GIS

ASU Libraries GIS Services. Here is a list of some of their data.

Arizona Geology Demonstration

Down this zip file and put it in a place where you can unzip it and work on it (can be your M drive; don't forget that you probably want to be using the SFTP software that we explained in Lecture 2 to move the files): Uncompress it and then double click on the icon. This should launch your ArcGIS session.
Video explanation:


Reference Datum
Map Projections
Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM)
UTM Grid Zones of the World
State Plane Coordinate System

Opening and Using ArcGIS Software

Note: I will be giving out free student versions for those of you with Windows Laptops.
For those that do not, or that want to use ASU's software, you can use the ArcGIS on the machines in the lab and or the ArcGIS that is available on

You must be aware of the differences between ArcGIS 9.3 and 10. The ArcGIS 10 MXD files cannot be opened by 9.3 but the reverse is possible.

GLG410 Computers in Earth and Space Exploration

Last modified: October 26, 2015