Laboratory Exercise 3

Getting Information About Features


Analyzing Spatial Data


This laboratory consists of exercises from Chapters 10, 11 and 12 of the lab text, Getting to Know ArcGIS Desktop, with the exercise data obtained from the accompanying CD-ROM.

ArcView is a powerful desktop geographic information system (GIS) developed by Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI). With ArcView, you can load any data that's linked to geographic locations and display it graphically as maps, charts and tables. You can also edit the data , change the way it's displayed, append additional data, create some of your own, perform queries to answer specific questions, or meet certain criteria, and analyze information statistically as well as spatially. Results can be shown as quality graphic presentations to print out or display your screen.

Lab 3 continues to explore the techniques of getting information about features, and how to analyze the relationships between features.

In Chapter 10 (Exercises 10a, 10b), you will learn how to select features by location

Chapter 11 (Exercises 11a, 11b, 11c, 11d),  introduces you to the ways of preparing data for analysis.

In Chapter 12 (Exercises 12a, 12b, 12c), you will learn how to analyze spatial data. Note: Sections 12a and 12b are important for the Term Project!

It is estimated that it will take from 3 to 6 hours to complete this lab. Please plan accordingly, so that all the answers to this lab are submitted at the same time.

For more information on these concepts, please refer to the ESRI website.


Complete the answers to the questions posed below. The questions are based on the work you did in completing the lab exercises above, and the reading for the lab. Please form your answers using MSWORD and attach them to an e-mail addressed to Do not e-mail your answers to the instructor's e-mail!

Questions for Lab 3

Chapter 10 - Selecting Features by Location

Q1. What are the four spatial relationships that can be used to select features by their spatial relationship to other features?

Q2. What parameters are needed to select features by location?

Q3. What is the difference between an attribute query and a location query?

Q4. What is a "definition query"?

Q5. Describe the process of creating a definition query in your own words.

Q6. What is a "spatial join"?

Chapter 11 - Preparing Data for Analysis

Q1. What is the purpose of dissolving data?

Q2. How many types of graph formats are available through the Graph Wizard?

Q3. Define "clipping". Why is clipping important?

Q4. What is the purpose of exporting data?

Chapter 12 - Analyzing Spatial Data

Q1. What is a buffer?

Q2. Why would you want to create a buffer? Give an example.

Q3. What is the difference between an intersection overlay and a union overlay?

Q4. What is the purpose of the Query Builder?

Q5. What is the difference between the query builder and the field calculator?