HOW TO LEARN GIS: RESOURCES
For those in the real estate industry—among others—a GIS can be an important and powerful tool. But for those who haven’t used one, they may be wondering how to learn GIS. After all, such powerful technology must be hard to use, right?
In general, systems like FuseGIS are actually pretty simple, even for first‐time users. But if you want to learn GIS quickly, there are plenty of resources to help out. Keep reading to learn some of our favorites—and why you should want to learn to use GIS in the first place.
RESOURCES TO LEARN GIS
Whether you’re just starting out with any GIS, using a different one for the first time, or just wanting to do better with one you’ve used for a while, you’re in luck. There are instructions on how to learn GIS in a variety of formats and for those at every stage of the learning process.
Consider the following.
Read the Right Books
If you’re an in‐depth learner that likes a lot of information, consider buying a book about how to learn GIS or checking one out from your local library. We like these:
Discovering GIS and ArcGIS, by Bradley A. Shellito.
Bradley Shellito’s new textbook uses hands-on experience to introduce both the “how” and “why” of geographic information systems. Students learn to combine an understanding of basic GIS concepts with practical ArcGIS skills, following step-by-step instructions to accomplish a wide range of real-world tasks and applications while always keeping sight on the conceptual basis and practical impact of what they are doing.
GIS Fundamentals: a First Text on Geographic Information Systems (6th Edition), by Paul Bolstad
This book provides an introduction to the theory and application of GIS. It is written for use in a first-year GIS class and as a reference for the GIS practitioner. This sixth edition balances theoretical and practical material, so that students may apply knowledge of GIS in the solution of real-world problems. Topics treated include an introduction to GIS, spatial data models, map projections, data entry, image data, GPS, digital data, database systems in GIS, general spatial analysis, raster analysis, terrain modeling, metadata, standards, and accuracy assessments.
Listen to Podcasts
For busy users, podcasts can be a fun learning opportunity during otherwise quiet moments in the day. There are several engaging podcasts that discuss not only how to use GIS, but GIS industry news and other uses for geospatial data.
With a passion for GIS, location intelligence, maps, cartography, indeed anything with a whiff of spatial, Chris and Mark decided to seek fame and fortune by starting the world’s best geospatial podcast
A podcast that may include anything and everything about the geospatial world. From news articles about the GIS industry that take our fancy, interviews with GIS practitioners, random acts of geospatial madness and of course the legendary game Export to Shapefile.
Speaking of GIS
This podcast by Kurt Towler has since been discontinued, but existing episodes are still available. Towler interviews geospatial professionals on the many uses of GIS, how it works, and tips on using it better.
Keep Up With Blogs
For shorter‐form learning opportunities, try keeping up with various blogs related to the industry. Some will focus on how specific industries can use GIS, while others will focus more on news regarding geospatial data. We recommend:
For those interested in the use and implications of GIS in the real estate industry, you’re already in the right place. We cover everything from the basics of GIS to how to best use GIS in real estate and more.
This site focuses more on technological innovations related to GIS and other geospatial tools. They also include open source materials and tutorials.
This site has an extensive blog and several tutorials that break down GIS usage into the basics for those learning on their own.
The best option for how to learn GIS is to start using it. Be curious, be creative, and stretch the limits of what you think you can do. You aren’t alone in your journey, either. Two is better than one when it comes to learning something new, so consider:
Finding a learning buddy. Pair up with another GIS newbie and check in regularly. You’ll both face challenges and both find breakthroughs, so with any luck, you can help each other out when the time comes. Coworkers starting out with the same platform are great for this role.
Finding an expert. Someone who’s been using GIS for longer than you was, at one point, as lost as you may feel now. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from someone you work with who understood the platform more quickly or experts from the providing company.
Share collective knowledge. If you’re hung up on a specific question or ready to help others, check online for chat rooms or forums dedicated to discussing GIS. These sites are a great place to find other beginners and experts and share questions, comments, and ideas.
If you’re interested in GIS for use in the real estate industry in and around the Houston and Austin, TX areas, FuseGIS is the way to go. Built with real estate professionals in mind, FuseGIS is easy to use and beneficial for those in many roles in the industry.
Interested in learning more? Schedule a demo today.