2021 SAG Award Winners

Carnegie Mellon University Libraries

Project Goal

As two GIS focused Librarians at CMU, we aim to support skill training in GIS-based software and spatial methodology, aid in the discovery and acquisition of spatial data, and promote critical spatial thinking. As GIS Specialists, we aim to support students, faculty and researchers using spatial analysis and GIS in their work.

We also founded the GIS community of practice for librarians to discuss the Role of Libraries in Geography and GIS Education. The project is supported by a grant from the National Center for Research in Geography Education who funded us to initiate a series of conversations about the Role of Libraries in Geography and GIS Education.
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Business Problem Solved

Academic libraries across many institutions play a significant role in the development and delivery of support for geospatial data, methods, and tools on their campus. As such, academic librarians are increasingly engaging in geospatial education, through formal and informal learning opportunities, both independently and in collaboration with disciplinary faculty. By considering geospatial education through the lens of the numerous and diverse literacies expected of learners - information, data, spatial, visual, technological - the role of librarians as essential partners in a cross-disciplinary geospatial education community becomes clear. The Roll Of Libraries in Geography and GIS Education seeks to support these efforts by bringing together librarians to share their ideas around practice, pedagody, and GIS research.

Technology Implemented

We use ArcGIS Online and ESRI StoryMaps as tools as platforms for our students to creeate their final projects in our course, Spatial Storytelling and GIS. We find that these tools help students to engage with spatial data in a independent way, which allows us to work with them to develop their own research questions about a spatial issue and tell a story abut that research to an audience in and outside of the classroom.

Development Team Biography

Emma Slayton, PhD. I currently serve as the Data Curation, Visualization, and GIS Specialist at Carnegie Mellon University Libraries. During my PhD studies at Leiden University Faculty of Archaeology, I focused on using GIS computer modeling techniques to hypothesize the location of early canoe routes in the Caribbean. I also experience working with data visualization tools and teaching best practices for GIS and visualization. This knowledge aids my work at CMU, where I plan workshops and other content to promote the use of various data visualization methods, tools, and techniques.
Jessica Benner, PhD. I am a GIScientist interested in understanding the motivations for collaborative mapping projects like OpenStreetMap and how these tools are used to map the physical accessibility of urban spaces. I also aim to support students, faculty and researchers using spatial analysis and GIS in their work by providing instruction sessions related to spatial information, data and tool literacy.