ESRI Conservation Program Resources:

Conservation Gis Starter Kit


Course: Conservation GIS using ArcView .Offered by: ESRI Virtual Campus

Authored by Conservation GIS Consortium/Ecotrust/Pacific Biodiversity Institute


Author: Conservation GIS Consortium 

This course of six modules uses actual applications and conservation data to teach ArcView GIS and solve common conservation problems. You will study the distribution of grizzly bears in the Northern Rockies, use satellite and other types of image data, conduct a watershed analysis in Western Washington, examine potential environmental impacts of a proposed timber sale in Eastern Washington, and examine potential mineral development in protected areas of British Columbia. 


After completing this course, you will be able to:
  • Map the distribution of wildlife
  • Analyze land use trends over time 
  • Analyze spatial relationships between wildlife and land use
  • Map mining activities over a region 
  • Analyze spatial relationships between mines and protected areas 
  • Analyze a watershed, including road density, proximity of roads to streams, and susceptibility of roads to erosion
  • Analyze threats to stream health and water quality in a watershed
  • Analyze canopy cover, stream gradient, and geology in relation to fish habitat
  • Analyze land ownership patterns and conservation efforts 
  • Assess the quality of GIS data used to plan a timber sale using images, field data, and photographs
  • Analyze timber sale units in relation to steep slopes, streams, sensitive plant species, and old growth stands 
This course is designed for people who have had a basic introduction to ArcView GIS and want to learn how to use ArcView GIS to analyze conservation data.

Prerequisites and Recommendations
Before taking this module, you should be familiar with basic ArcView GIS operations and concepts, such as: 

  • opening an ArcView project 
  • the project window 
  • basic ArcView documents (views, tables, charts, layouts) 
  • ArcView themes 
  • zooming and panning 
  • selecting features 
  • identifying features 
  • opening a theme table 
  • adding a theme 
  • using the Legend Editor to change symbols 
Web browser - Internet Explorer 3.0 or later OR Netscape 3.0 or later
ESRI software - ArcView GIS 3.0 or later 

Students who register for the entire Conservation GIS using ArcView GIS course can download a copy of ArcView GIS Virtual Campus Edition for free!

This course includes approximately 18 hours of online instruction, though actual hours may vary by student. Once enrolled, you may access this module indefinitely. 

To complete the lessons and exercises within this course you need to download Conservation GIS using ArcView GIS data which is provided at the beginning of each exercise.

Exam and Certification
A Certificate is awarded at the end of each module. To receive a certificate of completion, you must pass the module exam with a score of 75 percent or higher. You may take the exam as many times as you like, but different questions are presented each time. 

In addition, you receive a special course certificate when you complete the entire six module Conservation GIS using ArcView GIS course.



All text by the respective organizations/authors, January 2, 1997

Web layout & design: Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc. January 2, 1996

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