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Mapping and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) : GIS at UW-Madison

Information on Maps/Mapping & Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Technical Support and Training Resources

UW-Madison does not have a physical GIS "helpdesk" for answering technical questions regarding GIS software and procedures.  There are, however, several ways to get basic assistance.

GIS Technical Support Email

For GIS software support or other technical questions, you can send questions to the GIS Support List 
A team of Geospatial Alliance members will be happy to help, or refer you to someone on campus who can!

Robinson Map Library

Students, faculty and staff can contact the Robinson Map Library for assistance with the following:

  • Brief introduction to ArcGIS software and extensions
  • Basic understanding of geospatial data types and formats
  • Where to find reliable sources of geospatial data
  • Using and understanding metadata

Contact the Map Library via e-mail at Or contact Jaime Martindale directly.

Library Workshops

The Robinson Map Library offers several “Introduction to GIS” workshops (in the Fall and Spring semesters). Contact librarian Jaime Martindale for information on schedules and offerings, or check out the Campus Calendar each semester.

UPDATE: The Introduction to GIS Workshop is now available online!
This introductory workshop provides students with the fundamentals and basic concepts of GIS. A 45 minute lecture gives an overview of the technology and offers examples of applications. Following the lecture/video, students can access materials to work through a hands-on exercise, with three software options available. The exercise provides training in the basic functionality of working with geospatial data using GIS software.


ESRI Resources/Software at UW-Madison 

Information on the UW-Madison ESRI Campus Site License can be found here:
For questions, contact Math Heinzel, the UW-Madison campus site license administrator.


Instructor-led Training at UW-Madison's LICGF

The Land Information and Computer Graphics Facility at UW-Madison offers regular workshops, primarily on ESRI software.  They also offer student and staff discounts for their instructor-led classes.

UW-Madison Courses in GIScience

Overview of Geospatial Science
Geog 170: Our Digital Globe - An Overview of GIScience

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
Geog 377: Introduction to GIS
Geog 378: Introduction to Geocomputing
Geog 574: Spatial Databases
Geog 576: Spatial Web and Mobile Programming
Geog 578: GIS Applications
Geog 579: GIS and Spatial Analysis
Geog 970: Seminar

Domain-specific GIS Courses:

Environmental/Natural Resources
PLA 695: Applications of GIS in Natural Resources  

Zoo 504: Modeling Animal Landscapes

PLA 622: GIS for Planners
PLA 841: Planning for the Ecological City
PLA 969: GIS and Planning Applications

Landscape Architecture
PLA 262: Landscape Inventory & Evaluation Methods
PLA 462: Regional Design
PLA 695: Applications of GIS in Natural Resources

Geog 370: Introduction to Cartography
Geog 572: Graphic Design in Cartography
Geog 575: Interactive Cartography and Geovisualization
Geog 970: Seminar

Remote Sensing
F&W ECOL 371:Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing
Civ Engr/Envir St/Forestry 556: Remote Sensing Digital Image Processing
GeoSci 118: Monitoring the Earth by Satellite

Global Positioning System (GPS)
GeoSci 444: Practical Aspects of GPS Surveying

Contact Information

Profile Photo
Jaime Martindale
550 N. Park Street
310 Science Hall
Madison, WI 53706

GIS Labs On Campus

Robinson Map Library

  • 310 Science Hall, 550 North Park St.
  • Hours
  • 3 GIS workstations for browsing geospatial data and/or using GIS software (requires UW-Madison login)

Steenbock Library Infolab

  • 550 Babcock Drive
  • Hours
  • 68 PCs with a wide range of software, including ArcView
  • Access: Open to all faculty, staff, and students with a valid NetID

Forest and Wildlife Ecology Computer Laboratory

  • A120 Russell Labs
  • Access: Reserved for use by undergraduate and graduate forest and wildlife ecology classes, and may also be used by non-FWE students who are enrolled in courses taught by department faculty.

Geography Drop-in Lab

  • M376 Science Hall (located on the 3rd floor mezzanine), 550 North Park St.
  • Hours: 8:00 am - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday
  • 16 PCs with ArcGIS and a variety of other software
  • Access: Geography students, or students enrolled in Geography classes

Geography Geospatial Teaching Lab

  • 380 Science Hall, 550 North Park St.
  • Hours: N/A
  • 20 PCs plus one teaching station computer with ArcGIS, ArcView 3.3, MapInfo, IDRISI, Trimble Pathfinder Office
  • Access: Teaching Lab for Geography courses

PLA Computer Lab

  • Old Music Hall - 1st Floor
  • PLA students or affiliates

Other Campus Computing Labs