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Geographic Information Systems/Science

General Scope

To collect resources for Geographic Information Systems/Science which inform, instruct and theorize. Also to collect data sets which help users learn and manipulate the software. Remote Sensing is also an area of interest and collection. However, the subject is collected both in Baker/Berry Library and Kresge Physical Sciences Library. Kresge collects more technical and mathematically theoretical works while Baker/Berry has more general works.

  1. Audience
    Any discipline which has data tied to a part of the Earth can use Geographic Information Science/Systems (GIS) to map that data. There is no program specifically for GIS at Dartmouth. The Geography Department has taught courses in GIS and Remote Sensing for over 20 years. In 2007, the Geography and Earth Sciences Departments along with support from Biological Sciences, Environmental Studies and Academic Computing hired a researcher to head the Laboratory for GIS and Applied Spatial Analysis. That position's primary focuses are to teach GIS and help other faculty with their research and instructional use of the software. The lab is now called the Citrin Family GIS/Applied Spatial Analysis (ASA) Laboratory. Although the name has changed, the lab's main functions have not changed.
  2. Boundaries
    The limits for collecting printed GIS resources, regardless of version, is G 70 - GA 76. While G 70 through G 76 is for GIS, the rest of the call number range handles an intersection of Cartography and GIS.
    Archaeology has its own small call number range of CC 75 through CC 79.
    The remaining resources will class within a particular subject's view or use of GIS. For example, applications of urban GIS would class in the HT's or using GIS with census data goes into the HA's.
    The Library does "collect" software both paid (Esri) and open source.
  3. Partnerships
    Borrow Direct acts as a partner for GIS resources as it does for any other subject. However, recently some of the people who handle GIS services for the various institutions within the Ivies Plus met at Yale University to discuss possible collaborations and activities around GIS and those institutions.

Specific Delimitations to collecting in this subject area

  1. Languages
    English is the primary language for published resources.
  2. Geographical Areas (if applicable)
    New Hampshire and Vermont and the rest of New England are immediate priorities. We also collect resources for the United States. Data sets for the rest of the world are more generally collected. However, areas where the College has Foreign Study Programs have equal importance as data for New England. As we move from New England to the United States and the World, those resources become harder to find and more expensive.
  3. Types of Materials Collected
    The printed GIS resources can be instruction manuals, problem sets and analysis of how GIS works. The other major acquisition for GIS is data. The availability of data depends on the location of data mapped. If someone is within the United States, that data should be easily obtainable and free of cost. Once we go outside the United States, a cost may be associated with data acquisitions. There are foreign consortia for data, but they may be closed to institutions outside the country or region.
    Analog maps are another source for GIS data. They can be scanned, brought into the software, georeferenced and the information on the map used within the GIS. Since Dartmouth has a dedicated map room with Baker/Berry Library, this collection can provide much data for users.
    To help all of our GIS users, the Library contributes funds to the annual site license from Esri. The campus has access to ArcGIS software, ArcGIS Online and Esri Training.
  4. Format of Materials Collected
    The format is dependent on the type of materials. From now on, all encyclopedias, handbooks, dictionaries and assorted reference type materials will be electronic. Other resources may be purchased in print. Data resources are always electronic to be useful.
  5. Collective Collections
    There has not been any attempt to create a collective collection for GIS or data resources. The closest resource to collective collection may be EarthWorks housed at Stanford University. It provides a clearinghouse for a variety of GIS data, but not all data is available to everyone.

Revision History

Policy originally created in 2006 by Lucinda M. Hall, revised in September 2016 by Lucinda M. Hall

Current Bibliographer

Lucinda M. Hall

Last Updated: 9/29/16