Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Have a technical GIS question? Email the GIS Support List

Find out more about GIS services, resources, & events at UW-Madison

Globalpop_smGIS Services at the Robinson Map Library

While many geospatial data requests arrive at the library via the GIS Data Request Form, we can also accommodate in-person appointments for more in-depth research questions for data needed in courses or projects.  Use the robust UW-Madison Mapping and GIS Research Guide to get started!

We generally support:

  • Basic understanding of geospatial data types and formats
  • Where to find reliable sources of geospatial data

Students, faculty, and staff of UW-Madison can make an appointment for geospatial data assistance by contacting Jaime Martindale

GIS Support and Training on the UW-Madison campus

  • UW Libraries Introduction to GIS Workshop – NOW ONLINE!
    This introductory workshop provides students with the fundamentals and basic concepts of GIS. The 45 minute lecture gives an overview of the technology and offers examples of applications. Following the lecture/video, students can access materials to work through a hands-on exercise, with three software options available. The exercise provides training in the basic functionality of working with geospatial data using GIS software.


  • The Map Library provides initial consultation for GIS projects and an introduction/overview to software and tools. Requests for assistance in making maps or performing detailed analysis can be provided elsewhere on campus, like the Data Science Hub  or by emailing the GIS Support List .

  • The Land Information and Computer Graphics Facility offers ArcGIS and other ESRI-Authorized training courses. They can also provide students with access to the ESRI Virtual Campus online training modules. Visit the UW ESRI License information site for information on how to access to these online courses.

  • Academic Courses:
    UW Geography Department: G377: Introduction to GIS
    UW Geography Department: G578: GIS Applications
    UW Planning and Landscape Architecture (PLA): Applications of GIS in Planning
    UW PLA/Nelson Institute: Applications of GIS in Natural Resources

Software in the Map Library: ArcGIS Pro | ArcGIS Desktop | QGIS

There are three GIS workstations in the map library available for browsing geospatial data and/or using GIS software. ArcGIS software (and some others) are only accessible via UW-Madison netID and password access. ArcGIS software is also now installed in all eighteen general access computer labs (InfoLabs).