Information Technology

GIS: Fundamentals of ArcGIS for ArcGIS 10x (2 Days)


ArcGIS is a powerful and complex tool for viewing and analyzing data. With so much functionality available in the software, it can be difficult to get started. This 2-day class teaches essential skills for being efficient with ArcGIS. Explore GIS data through ArcMap and create maps to illustrate relationships in the data. Learn methods of displaying data with symbols and text. See how to ask questions of the data and get answers.


This class is primarily for those who are new to GIS and want to learn the basics of ArcGIS, Esri's standard software.

Topics Covered

Day 1
  • Introduction to GIS: Understand the components, goals, and reasons so many professionals use GIS.
    • What is GIS?
    • Working in ArcMap
  • ArcMap Basics: Interact with the data in the map and understand ArcGIS terms.
    • Essential Tools
  • Using Symbology to Analyze the Data: Change the appearance of the map to communicate the right information effectively.
    • Symbolizing Vector Data
    • Symbolizing Raster Data
    • Image Analysis Window
  • Designing Your Map for Presentation: Design *.pdf and printed maps.
    • Data View and Layout View
    • Designing the Page
    • Adding Elements to Explain the Data
    • Exporting and Printing
Day 2
  • Understanding GIS Data Types: Understand the data behind the map, including the difference between a shapefile and a geodatabase feature class, and learn about how to find GIS data online.
    • Finding Data
    • Accessing and Managing Data
    • GIS Data
    • Documenting Your Data
  • Asking Questions of Your Data: Ask questions of your data, such as, “Where are the hospitals with the most trauma patients?” and get answers like, “The average number of trauma patients in this area is…”
    • Selecting Features
    • Interactive Selection
    • Select by Attributes
    • Select by Location
    • Using the Selection
  • Optimizing the Display of Your Data: Emphasize patterns or trends in the data, filter schools by type, add text to the map, save and re-use data display settings.
    • Layer Organization
    • Layer Properties
    • Layer Files
  • Tables and Analysis: View data tables in ArcMap. Start with an Excel spreadsheet of coordinates and end with a map of recent earthquake points. Learn how to buffer hurricane paths or clip out just the police stations from a specific county.
    • Working with Tables
    • Plotting Coordinates
    • Address Geocoding
    • Basic Geoprocessing

Prerequisites and Recommendations

Students should have knowledge of Microsoft Windows®.

  • Sorry, there are no classes currently available for this course.
    Contact the DES Training Center traininginfo@des.wa.gov for training options.