Advanced Spatial Analysis

This website is preserved as an Archive for the NIH-funded GISPopSci / Advanced Spatial Analysis Training Programs (2005–2013). Current resources in support of
Spatially Integrated Social Science
are now available at the following:


PSU 2005 May 29-June 11, 2005: University Park, PA

Workshop Description

This workshop will expose population scientists to the vast array of spatial data that are available, encourage them to think critically and creatively about how different forms of spatial data can be integrated in their research, and introduce them to the spatial analytical methods that are increasingly encountered in demographic inquiry. Hands-on exercises and demonstrations will cover issues associated with spatial data handling (e.g., address-matching, deriving new variables, integrating different types of contextual data as well as using spatial analysis tools within a GIS for data visualization and modeling). The workshop will focus on applications and demonstrations drawn from studies of urban poverty, neighborhood research, racial/ethnic diversity, maternal and child health and wellbeing, and population-environment relations. Similarly, workshop lab exercises will be based on demographic and other socio-economic and health-related data commonly used by population scientists.

The GIS Population Science workshop will provide:

  • A basic introduction to GIS, spatial analysis, spatial statistics, mapping, and visualization
  • A strong focus on applications in population research
  • Coverage of the most important basic issues of spatial methods, including problems of inference, spatial dependence, spatial heterogeneity, scale, uncertainty, and the ecological fallacy
  • Opportunities for participants to work with their own data
  • Activities that foster peer-to-peer interaction, through group projects and small-group discussions
  • Social activities that foster peer-to-peer interactions and help to build a community of scholars based on shared interests in spatial demographic research

Laptop Requirement

Workshop attendees are expected to bring a laptop computer that meets the following requirements: Windows XP/2000/NT, 512 MB RAM, 1.0 GHz Processor, 1GB free disk space. Attendees will receive a fully functioning 30-day trial version of ArcView 9 software on CD-ROM and a CD of sample data for use during the workshop. In addition, participants will receive the latest versions of specialized software for spatial statistics and other tools of importance to demographic research.


All participants in the workshop will earn a certificate from the Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI, by successfully completing "Introduction to ArcGIS" training from an ESRI-authorized instructor during the first three days of the workshop. In addition, participants will receive a certificate of completion from Penn State/UCSB.