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Using GIS Software in your Business & Information Technology Programs

Friday, November 16, 2018

Let's start the question-What is GIS? GIS also known as Graphic Information Systems is a technology that has grown in significance to our society in the early 1960s with some historical connections back to as early as the 1850s. Today, GIS has created an open source expansion giving everyone access to big data sets at either significantly reduced costs or at no cost. The data gives users access through computer-based tools to store and manipulate map-based land data. To the regular everyday user, navigation systems have given us the ability to travel to a destination based upon a destination's address. The expansion of GIS will continue to define how our students interact with data in both business and everyday life as referenced in a blog article by Nobel Systems titled "20 Ways GIS Data is Used in Business and Everyday Life."

What opportunities to our Business & Information Technology Education instructors have to engage students in GIS technologies?

Step 1: school staff may access the DPI webpage Wisconsin Statewide and Free Software Programs for 4k-12 Schools to learn more about the free ESRI Geographic Software Program

Step 2: explore the ArcGIS for Schools Bundle or other comparable GIS software options

Step 3: utilize the Educator Support and other professional learning options to expand your capacity to be an instructional leader in your community

Step 4: prepare engaging instructional lessons that are connected to the Wisconsin Standards for Business & Information Technology including the Wisconsin Common Career Technical Standards or other content area Wisconsin academic standards - check out this Teaching with GIS Resource Sheet that was spotlighted at a recent event hosted by the Wisconsin Technical College System.

Step 5: share your quality educational resources with others through the WISELearn Resource Library - did you know there are over 40 resources that may already be aligned to Wisconsin academic standards?

Interested in learning more about K-12 connections to GIS, then visit our Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction webpages for more information. Additional datasets specific to educational institutions in Wisconsin may also be accessed on the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction's GIS Mapping Data website.