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Open Access Publications from the University of California

In 1996 NCGIA initiated an NSF Advanced Technological Education Program to develop a Core Curriculum for Technical Programs (CCTP). It was intended as a curriculum-building resource of information related to the needs of GIS education in community and technical colleges. The resource units in this curriculum offer a complementary perspective to the NCGIA Core Curriculum in GIS (1990) and the Core Curriculum in GIScience (1997‒2000).

CCTP focused on technician training, providing course content from the perspective of what practitioners need to be able to do and resources for GIS instructors in technical programs. The CCTP project began with a one-week working session in summer 1996 at which fourteen GIS instructors and other experts developed a framework for the CCTP.

Cover page of Introduction to the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs

Introduction to the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs


This introduction provides a historical overview of the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs. It describes the working group and initial work session where a framework for the curriculum was developed, and it includes a task list outlining the topics originally intended for the curriculum.

Cover page of Outline of the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs

Outline of the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs


An outline of the GIS Core Curriculum for Technical Programs, organized by topic, is presented with hyperlinks to each unit's material on eScholarship. Note that hyperlinks are only active if the PDF file is downloaded.

Cover page of Unit 12: Planning a Digitizing Project

Unit 12: Planning a Digitizing Project


This unit introduces digitizing—the transformation of information from an analog format to a digital format—as it relates to GIS. It describes essential points to consider when planning a digitizing project including scale, coordinate system, accuracy and software constraints.

Cover page of Instructor's Guide

Instructor's Guide


The Core Curriculum for Technical Programs (CCTP) concentrates on providing course content assistance for instructors. It is intended to support a full range of courses that would be taught at a 2-year college. This guide is designed to provide a quick overview for the GIS instructor on the use of the CCTP resources to create GIS course modules and design GIS courses.

Cover page of Unit 39: Performing Statistical Analyses

Unit 39: Performing Statistical Analyses


This unit describes the fundamental concepts of statistics in a light-hearted manner that attempts to express the key ideas of this critical intellectual building block without being overly technical or boring. The concepts of mean, median, mode, variance and standard deviation are introduced through example applications that range from comparing samples from two geographical sites to household food distribution.

Cover page of Unit 6: Terrain Data

Unit 6: Terrain Data


This unit introduces some of the uses of digital terrain data, the types of elevation data available and how to obtain them. Through examples and discussion it presents examples of data sources and formats, software for viewing and processing elevation data, and a comprehensive list of data and software resources.

Cover page of Background: What is GIS?

Background: What is GIS?


This unit provides the instructor with a simple overview of GIS. After learning the material covered in this unit, the student should be able to provide a general definition for GIS; list some of the application areas of GIS; provide examples of how GIS is used; and describe topics that will be learned in an introductory study of technical GIS.

Cover page of Unit 24: Using GPS Data

Unit 24: Using GPS Data


This unit’s overview of Global Positioning System (GPS) data includes sections on GPS equipment and definitions, accuracy considerations, project preplanning, collecting and correcting data and exporting data. Procedures for a sample implementation, using GPS to collect utility data, are described using Pathfinder Office software to create a new project and data dictionary, transferring the data dictionary to a datalogger, using Quick Plan software to preplan data collection, using the ProXL Datalogger to collect data, downloading the data to a PC, differentially correct the data using base station data, and exporting the results to ArcView.

Cover page of Unit 18: Scanning Air Photos

Unit 18: Scanning Air Photos


This unit describes basic concepts related to the scanning of air photos, including vocabulary, potential applications, spatial scale and file size considerations and image processing software. Image types (e.g., 1-bit black and white, 8-bit grayscale, 8-bit color) are described and a table of typical aerial photo scales as they translate to pixel resolutions and file sizes is included.

Cover page of Background: GIS Applications and Case Studies

Background: GIS Applications and Case Studies


This unit presents (1) a case study and (2) a bibliographic resource for GIS in the medical field. The case study illustrates the use of a GIS to monitor and analyze spatial patterns of physicians' multiple locations. This case highlights data location, acquisition and assessment, join and relational operators, geocoding and distance calculations, and standard query language.