Introduction to GIS
All Geography instructors teaching this course are expected to include the following items in their course syllabus. The order that they are included is up to each instructor, and instructors may include additional items. All the material in regular print below must be included in every instructor’s syllabus exactly as stated. It is up to each instructor to compose those parts of the master syllabus below that are in italicized print. Your individual policies are up to you, but you must include clearly stated policies as required below.
The instructor will give the following information to students:
a. Instructor’s name
b. Course name and number:
Introduction to GIS
c. Synonym and section number
2. Contact Information (How to reach the instructor)
The instructor will give students his home campus (if applicable), office number, and office telephone number. The instructor may also give students his e-mail address and other telephone numbers (including home number) if the instructor wishes to release that information. All instructors will give students their office hours. Full-time instructors will discuss how conferences outside of office hours can be arranged.
3. Course description
The following course description will be included in the syllabus:
“GIS (Geographic Information Systems) is a computer-based tool that uses spatial (geographic) data to analyze and solve real-world problems. This course is designed to introduce the student to the basic principles and techniques of GIS. The lab material will emphasize GIS data collection, entry, storage, analysis, and output using ArcGIS.”
4. Required texts/materials
List all texts/materials that students will need for the course. The textbooks must be on the approved textbook list as maintained by the Social Sciences task force .For each textbook include the title, the author, the edition, the date published and the publisher.
5. Instructional Methodology
The instructor will describe the methodology (lecture, group discussion, group projects, video-based, etc.) that will be used to teach the course.
6. Course rationale
Instructor will include the following course rationale.
“Introduction to GIS is designed to provide the students with an understanding of the methods and theories of spatial analysis that will allow students to apply GIS knowledge and skills to everyday life and their chosen careers, to apply the course towards a certificate or an associate’s degree at Austin Community College, and to prepare them for success in upper division courses in GIS at other institutions.”
7. Course Level Student Learning Outcomes
The following student learning outcomes will be included on the syllabus: (The instructor is encouraged to add additional outcomes that do not have to be listed here but can be handed out separately.)
By the end of this course, the student will
· define geography and GIS
· describe scale, projection, and coordinate systems and explain importance of each in GIS
· differentiate between vector, raster, and object-oriented data structures and explain the appropriate use of each of these data structures
· describe various types of GIS data capture
· explain the basics of GIS data storage,
· differentiate between attribute analysis and spatial analysis and describe the appropriate use of each type of analysis,
· produce effective maps of analytical results which adhere to established cartographic standards
· demonstrate proficiency with GIS software
8. Program Level Student Learning Outcomes
The following program level Student Learning Outcomes will be included on the syllabus:
By the end of the Associate of Arts in GIS program, the student will
· use GIS knowledge to choose appropriate problem-specific spatial analyses
· differentiate between attribute and spatial queries and describe the proper use of each
· use GIS technology to retrieve, manage, analyze, and present spatial information
9. Course Evaluation/Grading System
There are no discipline-wide policies regarding grading/evaluations. The instructor will explain to students how they will be graded/evaluated in the course.
10. Course policies
The instructor must include policies on attendance (If you don’t have an attendance policy, make sure that is indicated on the syllabus), withdrawals, incompletes, scholastic dishonesty, student discipline, academic freedom, and students with disabilities.
a. The following statement on scholastic dishonesty must be included:
Statement on Scholastic Dishonesty
A student attending ACC assumes responsibility for conduct compatible with the mission of the college as an educational institution. Students have the responsibility to submit coursework that is the result of their own thought, research, or self-expression. Students must follow all instructions given by faculty or designated college representatives when taking examinations, placement assessments, tests, quizzes, and evaluations. Actions constituting scholastic dishonesty include, but are not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, fabrication, collusion, and falsifying documents. Penalties for scholastic dishonesty will depend upon the nature of the violation and may range from lowering a grade on one assignment to an “F” in the course and/or expulsion from the college. See the Student Standards of Conduct and Disciplinary Process and other policies at http://www.austincc.edu/current/needtoknow
b. The following statement on students with disabilities must be included:
Statement on Students with Disabilities
Each ACC campus offers support services for students with documented disabilities. Students with disabilities who need classroom, academic or other accommodations must request them through the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD). Students are encouraged to request accommodations when they register for courses or at least three weeks before the start of the semester, otherwise the provision of accommodations may be delayed.
Students who have received approval for accommodations from OSD for this course must provide the instructor with the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ from OSD before accommodations will be provided. Arrangements for academic accommodations can only be made after the instructor receives the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ from the student.
Students with approved accommodations are encouraged to submit the ‘Notice of Approved Accommodations’ to the instructor at the beginning of the semester because a reasonable amount of time may be needed to prepare and arrange for the accommodations.
Additional information about the Office for Students with Disabilities is available at http://www.austincc.edu/support/osd/
c. Policy on academic freedom. This is suggested wording; you may modify this as you choose.
“Each student is strongly encouraged to participate in class discussions. In any classroom situation that includes discussion and critical thinking, there are bound to be many differing viewpoints. Students may not only disagree with each other at times, but the students and instructor may also find that they have disparate views on sensitive and volatile topics. It is my hope that these differences will enhance class discussion and create an atmosphere where students and instructor alike will be encouraged to think and learn. Therefore, be assured that your grades will not be adversely affected by any beliefs or ideas expressed in class or in assignments. Rather, we will all respect the views of others when expressed in classroom discussions.”
11. Course Outline/Calendar
This will be instructor specific. Students need to have some idea of what they will be doing when, particular test dates, and other due dates. If dates are tentative and subject to change, then a statement to that effect will be included on the syllabus.