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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Teaching Introductory Geographical Data Analysis with GIS: A Laboratory Guide for an Integrated SpaceStat/ldrisi Environment (93-5)


This Technical Report contains a small number of laboratory exercises that were developed in conjunction with an introductory course on geographical data analysis, offered to upper-level undergraduates in the Geography Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. The course is intended to stress the spatial aspects of data used by geographers in empirical work. The emphasis in the course is on displaying spatial data, looking for patterns and spatial associations, and on learning to think in spatial terms. Concepts such as spatial autocorrelation, spatial heterogeneity, contiguity, etc. are stressed from the start, in contrast to the usual practice. The course material includes simple descriptive statistics (including spatial means, etc.), measures of spatial autocorrelation, the analysis of scatterplots, and bivariate linear regression, with spatial ANOVA and trend surface regression as special cases. A more rigorous analysis of regression diagnostics is covered separately.

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