GIS day 12/1/18

GIS Day @ St Andrews
When: Mon. Nov 12, 2018
13:00 – 15:00
Where: Forbes Room, Irvine


Donald Payne, Land & Air Quality Officer, Fife Council
Mapping land contamination in Fife

Anne Robertson, Head of Services, EDINA
Digimap to encompass global coverage and socio-economic data

Sebastijan Sekulic, PhD Candidate, DGSD
GIS & machine learning to detect forest from satellite imagery

Corallie Hunt, PhD Candidate, DGSD
Improving the spatial analysis of Scotland’s marine sedimentary
carbon resource

For more information contact Jed Long (
See also:

GIS Day Poster 2018

Making maps for complete beginners: An introduction to Geographic Information Systems

BEGIN is collaborating with CAPOD to provide training in GIS for researchers and postgraduate students at the University of St Andrews. The next instalment of this course will be in October:


Date: Tue 16 Oct 2018
Time: 1000-1700
Key details: Explore the spatial dimensions of your data and transform your boring spreadsheets into engaging and informative maps. No previous GIS knowledge required. You must bring a laptop with the latest version of free QGIS software installed.

Course information

This course will introduce students to the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). The basic structures of GI data, vector and raster, will be explained alongside key applications and uses. Students will be introduced to basic mapping and spatial analysis in QGIS, which is a free and open source software, available for most platforms. The course will support studies from any discipline where GIS mapping is of interest, including geography, history, environmental sciences, biology, international relations and archaeology. No previous knowledge of GIS is required.

The workshop will consist of two lectures (30 min each) and two labs (remaining time). The lecture will provide theoretical support for the labs, in which the participants will have hands-on activities in QGIS to familiarise themselves with the software and develop their skills.

You must bring a laptop with the latest version of QGIS installed.  Lunch is provided.

Course pre-work

Must have the latest version of QGIS installed on your laptop. We will email you a link for downloading the latest version 1 week before the workshop.

What previous participants have said about this course:

  • “Excellent, well worth attending if you are a complete beginner.”
  • “Excellent basic introduction to the programme. Lots of time to work through examples and questions.”
  • “Very useful and powerful tool to show your spatial data.”
  • “Feel better able to use data like this in my own research.”


Aims and objectives

By the end of this workshop you should be able to:

  • Understand the basic structures of spatial data
  • Understand spatial distortions on maps
  • Display spatial data into a map
  • Perform basic spatial analysis.

See the details and book the course through the CAPOD course booking system.

SACHI Seminar – Alyssa Goodman: Visualization and the Universe

BEGIN members are invited to join the SACHI seminar by Prof Alyssa Goodman.


Event details

  • When: 12th October 2018 12:00 – 13:00
  • Where: Cole 1.33b

Visualization and the Universe: How and why astronomers, doctors, and you need to work together to understand the world around us
Astronomy has long been a field reliant on visualization. First, it was literal visualization—looking at the Sky. Today, though, astronomers are faced with the daunting task of understanding gigantic digital images from across the electromagnetic spectrum and contextualizing them with hugely complex physics simulations, in order to make more sense of our Universe.   In this talk, I will explain how new approaches to simultaneously exploring and explaining vast data sets allow astronomers—and other scientists—to make sense of what the data have to say, and to communicate what they learn to each other, and to the public.  In particular, I will talk about the evolution of the multi-dimensional linked-view data visualization environment known as glue and the Universe Information System called WorldWide Telescope.  I will explain how glue is being used in medical and geographic information sciences, and I will discuss its future potential to expand into all fields where diverse, but related, multi-dimensional data sets can be profitably analyzed together.  Toward the aim of bringing the insights to be discussed to a broader audience, I will also introduce the new “10 Questions to Ask When Creating a Visualization” website,
Speaker biography: Professor Alyssa Goodman, Harvard University
Alyssa Goodman is the Robert Wheeler Willson Professor of Applied Astronomy at Harvard University, and a Research Associate of the Smithsonian Institution. Goodman’s research and teaching interests span astronomy, data visualization, and online systems for research and education. Goodman received her undergraduate degree in Physics from MIT in 1984 and a Ph.D. in Physics from Harvard in 1989. Goodman was awarded the Newton Lacy Pierce Prize from the American Astronomical Society in 1997, became full professor at Harvard in 1999, was named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2009, and chosen as Scientist of the Year by the Harvard Foundation in 2015. Goodman has served as Chair of the Astronomy Section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and on the National Academy’s Board on Research Data and Information, and she currently serves on the both the IAU and AAS Working Groups on Astroinformatics and Astrostatistics. Goodman’s personal research presently focuses primarily on new ways to visualize and analyze the tremendous data volumes created by large and/or diverse astronomical surveys, and on improving our understanding of the structure of the Milky Way Galaxy. She is working closely with colleagues at the American Astronomical Society, helping to expand the use of the WorldWide Telescope program, in both research and in education.