GIScience - Cartography and GIS
Geographic Information Science (GIScience) addresses the fundamental issues surrounding the use of computer technology to help people work with geographic information. GIScience is a field devoted to the acquisition, representation, management, analysis, and visualization of geospatial data. It is relatively new discipline that incorporates geography, cartography, spatial analysis, computer science and other related fields geodesy, cognition, statistics, and mathematics. As an academic discipline, GIScience is concerned with both theoretical and applied issues relating to the creation, analysis, and visualization of spatiotemporal information. It is inherently interdisciplinary in both its methods and applications. Here at UW-Madison, we are committed to the integration of GIScience with substantive geographic questions.
For the past 40 years, UW-Madison has enjoyed a world-class reputation in cartography, and more recently, in GIScience. We are one of only a handful of departments offering both a BS and MS in Cartography & GIS, as well as a very successful one-year Certificate Program in GIS.
Our well-established program is being expanded as new courses are introduced, including advanced classes in geocomputation, Web-based cartography, spatial database and programming. Most of our graduate students develop "dual proficiencies", that is, on one hand, they develop a high proficiency in technical fields (such as GIS, statistics, and computer science) which allows them to conduct comprehensive spatial analysis using modern information technology; on the other hand, they develop a strong background in application disciplines (such as forestry, soils, water resources, and ecology, urban planning) which allows them to apply the spatial analytical and statistical techniques effectively. Rapid technological change makes teaching GIScience a daunting prospect. We strive to help students develop both the applied skills necessary for today's digital world, and a theoretical understanding of issues in GIScience so they can cope with future developments. While software may change, the fundamentals do not.
Jim Burt is interested in digital terrain analysis, visualization, and numerical modeling. He is particularly interested in methods for encoding process-driven landscape analysis. He teaches introductory and advanced courses in physical geography, statistical methods, and geocomputation.
Qunying Huang is interested in distributed computing, cloud computing, cyberinfrastructure, spatial web portals and services, geospatial environmental modeling and model interoperability. She develops large-scale distributed computing algorithms and applies different computing models (e.g., cloud computing and GPU computing) to address contemporary challenges in the GIScience. She teaches introductory and advanced courses in GIScience, geospatial programming and databases.
Rob Roth focuses on the topics of Cartography, Geovisualization, and Geovisual Analytics with specific emphasis on interactive & web-based cartography, human-computer interaction and User Interface/User Experience (UI/UX) design, user-centered design & usability engineering, and map-supported human reasoning & decision-making, particularly under conditions of uncertainty.
A-Xing Zhu is interested in the development of modern spatial information processing techniques (artificial intelligence techniques, and fuzzy logic, high performance computing, easy geocomputing, spatial analysis with volunteered geographic information, mapping with uncertainty), and the application of these techniques in natural resource management and environmental modeling (such soil mapping, wildlife habitat mapping, landslide mapping, and watershed system modeling/scenario analysis). He currently teaches an introductory GIS course, GIS and spatial anlaysis, Environmental modeling with GIS, and GIS Applications.