Career, Coursera, GIS, Society, Urban Planning
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GIS Specialization – Fundamentals of GIS

On February 22, 2016, I started the GIS Specialization Course with UC Davis through Coursera. Today, I completed the first course in the series.

As I already have a couple years of GIS experience, the first course Fundamentals of GIS was more like a review of the basics. At the same time, I definitely learned new skills such as map package sharing and creating bookmarks.

To complete the first course, I needed to create a map for the final assignment. The original data is at the precinct level. I had to aggregate the voting data for Proposition 37 and total votes to the county level.

This is the map I created:

Electoral_Politics.jpg

I must say, this process took longer than I expected. I am definitely a bit rusty with the map-making. My spatial analysis skills are also rusty. At first, I used a different geoprocessing tool. Instead of directly using a spatial join with the intersect method, I took the long way around using Intersect, Merge, and then Dissolve. However, this presented issues because the data became more duplicated than usual. Certain precincts were crossed by two or more counties, which creates duplicate data.

For my next skill, I need to learn how to avoid duplicating data and assigning/dividing the intersect data more appropriately. Hopefully, I will get to learn it in the next GIS course.

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