U-Spatial Training

U-Spatial offers a variety of instructor-led workshops focusing on different geospatial tools and technologies. Our workshops are offered at a minimal cost to UMN students, faculty, and staff; the general public is also welcome to register.

If you are new to mapping, we recommend starting with Web GIS: Introduction to ArcGIS Online and/or ArcGIS StoryMaps: Visual Storytelling with Maps.

See all upcoming workshops here.

If you are having trouble registering for a workshop, please contact the U-Spatial Help Desk


Teach with StoryMaps 

Story Maps as class projects can lead to powerful learning experiences as students combine spatial data with narrative and visuals. This presentation will introduce how instructors can incorporate Story Maps into classroom teaching. Next webinar: TBD

Teach with Survey123

This two-hour webinar will demonstrate how to use Survey123 as a tool in the classroom.

Check back for upcoming training opportunities.

ArcGIS Story Maps: Visual Storytelling with Maps

This two-hour workshop guides participants through the process of telling stories with maps using the Esri Story Map platform. A discussion about best practices in visual storytelling will precede a step-by-step tutorial on creating your own Esri Story Map.

This workshop has virtual and on-campus sessions. 

Web GIS: Introduction to ArcGIS Online

If you are new to GIS, this workshop is for you. This three-hour workshop introduces participants to web-based mapping and spatial analysis using Esri's ArcGIS Online. Through a combination of lectures, demos, and hands-on activities, participants will learn the fundamentals of designing and sharing web maps using Esri's ArcGIS Online. Topics covered include: finding and preparing data for mapping, map design, spatial analysis, and sharing web maps.

This workshop has virtual and on-campus sessions.

Web GIS: Advanced Topics⁠—Content Management in ArcGIS Online

Take your ArcGIS Online skills to the next level! This workshop introduces participants to advanced topics of managing content in ArcGIS Online: publish layers, learn how to work with field data types, apply field calculations, publish tile layers, and other useful things to know when managing items in ArcGIS Online.

Note: This workshop is not for beginner users of ArcGIS Online. It is required that participants come with a basic understanding of ArcGIS Online, the equivalent to U-Spatial’s workshop "Web GIS: Introduction to ArcGIS Online."

Desktop GIS: Analyzing Data and Creating Maps

This seven-hour workshop introduces participants to using a geographic information system (GIS) to analyze data and create maps. Through a combination of presentations and hands-on exercises, attendees will learn how to transform data in spreadsheets to layers on maps, learn core cartographic map design concepts and methods of classifying data, and be introduced to some common geoprocessing tools used in spatial analysis.

We teach this workshop with two different software options. Review the options below to determine which one will meet your needs:

  1. Esri ArcGIS Pro - This is the latest desktop GIS software. It uses a ribbon toolbar similar to Microsoft Office products. All students, faculty, and staff at the University of Minnesota are able to install this software on a personal computer for free. If you are new to GIS, this workshop is a good choice for you. 
  2. QGIS - QGIS is an open-source application that will be free for you to use after leaving the University. QGIS is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux-based computers.

Desktop GIS: A Brief Introduction to ArcGIS Pro

This 3-hour workshop will teach basic geographic information system (GIS) concepts through project based exercises using ArcGIS Pro, Esri's latest professional desktop GIS software. Attendees will learn how to transform data in spreadsheets to layers on maps, be given a high overview of core cartographic concepts and methods of classifying data, and be introduced to some common geoprocessing tools used in spatial analysis. This is an abbreviated version of the 7-hour Desktop GIS workshops. 

Spatial Data Collection: ArcGIS Field Maps and Survey123

This hands-on workshop will introduce you to two Esri apps that allow you to use your mobile device as a tool for collecting spatial data in the field and seamlessly add it to a map: Field Maps ArcGIS and Survey123 for ArcGIS. The workshop will explain the intended use of each app and guide participants through a workflow allowing them to customize the apps, gather data in the field, and visualize collected data. This workshop is a modification and improvement to the previously offered workshop, "Collector 101: Field Data Collection using Esri's Collector for ArcGIS."
Participants are required to provide their own Apple or Android mobile device. No prior experience with ArcGIS Online is required.

Spatial SQL with PostGIS

This three-hour, hands-on workshop looks at different spatial data types and spatial data storage formats. Using PostgreSQL+PostGIS, along with QGIS, you'll learn to use structured query language (SQL) to access these data, visualize them, and solve common spatial problems. Note: This is an intermediate-level course.

ArcGIS Notebooks: The Basics

ArcGIS Notebooks is an intuitive web-based interface that allows you to interact with your Web GIS using Python. From simple administrative tasks to complex analysis, Notebooks provides a clean space to do all of your GIS work. In this workshop attendees will learn about the ArcGIS Notebooks environment through a series of hands-on exercises that guide users through common GIS tasks, including: content management (viewing, adding, editing, and deleting items), performing GIS analysis, and automating tasks. This workshop will use Notebooks with ArcGIS Online, but the course concepts can be applied to working with an Enterprise Notebook Server or with Notebooks inside ArcGIS Pro.

Note: The ArcGIS API for Python will be used in the exercises, and while the workshop will provide an overview of the API and its documentation, the focus of the workshop will be on writing code in an ArcGIS Notebook and seeing the awesome results! This workshop is open to anyone who has a basic understanding of Python or willing to review some basic fundamentals prior to the workshop.


Additional Training

Teach with Story Maps

Story Maps are a powerful platform that integrate spatial thinking with storytelling to present information in a compelling, interactive and easy to understand format. Visit the new online Teach With Story Maps curriculum portal to see how you can implement these teaching tools in your classes, storymaps.umn.edu.

Esri Academy (Online Training)

The University of Minnesota's site license with Esri provides access to a wealth of online training courses. To access training visit www.esri.com/training and click "Sign In" in the upper right corner. If this is your first time logging in to the UMN Esri Enterprise account, follow these login instructions.

Remote Sensing and Geospatial Analysis Lab (RSGAL)

The Remote Sensing and Geospatial Analysis Lab offer workshops periodically throughout the year.  Topics include Object Based Image Analysis (OBIA), LiDAR, and UAS/drone technology.  For more information on these offerings, contact Professor Joe Knight in the Department of Forest Resources.

QGIS Training Material

A directory of free training material for QGIS in multiple languages.

For a list of for-credit GIS classes, see https://rc.umn.edu/uspatial/resources/courses.