Introduction   Contents

1. Basic Use of ArcMap 
   Creating a Map 
   Data Frame Tools
   Data Frame Properties
   Tables and Charts
   Layout View
   Saving Map Documents
   Activity 1

2. Map Projections
3. ArcCatalog 
   Basic Uses    
4. ArcToolBox 
   Basic Uses    
5. Adding Spatial Information
   Adding Non-Spatial Data
   Dbase Files
   Activity 2

6. Selecting Data
   By Graphics
   By Location
   Activity 3

7.  Exporting Maps
   Activity 4
   General Information
   Data Sets



GIS: Geographic Information Systems, Geographic Information Science, or Geographic Information Studies.

What is a GIS?
In the strictest sense, a GIS is a computer system capable of assembling, storing, manipulating, and displaying geographically referenced information, i.e. data identified according to their locations. GIS practitioners also regard the total GIS as including operating personnel and the data that go into the system. The first GIS was developed in the mid 1960s (1963) as the Canadian Geographic Information System (CGIS) associated with the Canada Land Inventory.

MCHP has been doing GIS analysis since the start of the centre and before. Much of the research repository data is already geographically based through postal and municipal codes. MCHP has always looked at location of residence, location of service, migration and changes in residence. More recently, MCHP has looked at education measures tied to Regional Health Authority (RHA) and Winnipeg areas, child inequality measures, and neighbourhood socio-economic characteristics by community centre areas. Most of this work was presented without using maps. RHA and other health regions are all geographic units. Income quintiles and other SES measures are based on the geographic location of individuals and household income by neighbourhoods. In other words GIS is nothing new; however, presenting information as maps has not been extensively used and geo-locating and referencing has typically been done by hand.

Maps have been used and developed from SAS in the past at MCHP. This was often a long and painful process since the maps provided by SAS did not contain the base maps required for Manitoba. Creating, editing, and importing new maps into PROC GMAP was very time consuming. In addition, using and manipulating map data for presentation and basic analysis was difficult. More recently SAS has added a GIS component to its software package that makes the process of mapping much easier. While SAS/GIS software has many of the components of GIS packages like ArcGIS, MapInfo, and GRASS it is still quite limited. For more information on using SAS, please refer to our SAS online tutorial.


This workshop covers data presentation using maps and getting data into and out of ArcGIS. We will also cover adding some your own data from tables. The primary tool used in this workshop will be ArcMap.GIS for this workshop is limited to presentation of geographic information using maps.

This workshop will not be covering the creating or editing of maps, spatial statistics, use of raster/bitmap images, network analysis, geodatabases, or other advanced techniques. This is intended as a workshop to provide an introduction to the use of ArcMap and some GIS concepts, it should not be considered a complete introduction to GIS. A print copy of the course notes is available (Course Notes.pdf) as well as a georeferencing addition (georeferencing.pdf).


ArcMap 8.2 from ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute) ArcGIS Desktop will be used for this workshop. There are a few factors which make ArcView or ArcGIS the most appropriate choice for this workshop: The University of Manitoba has a site licence for ArcGIS through the Department of Environment and Geography, it is widely used and supported, and it is primarily a vector based application which works well for our needs. Until recently we have not used ArcGIS 8.2 very much because it requires more powerful computers than were generally available. A free package called ArcExplorer is available from ESRI and will allow users to display but not edit or manipulate maps or tables. There are a wide variety of other GIS packages for sale and for free: MapInfo, EpiMap, Idrisi, GRASS, etc…

Tools Within ArcGIS
-Map: display and presenting maps (Relates most to ArcView 3.3)
-Catalog: manage, storage, locations, defaults, creating new files, metadata
-Toolbox: transformations, statistics


View shapefiles and coverages
View geodatabases
Create/Edit shapefiles
Create/Edit coverages
Create/Edit personal geodatabases
Create/Edit multi-user geodatabases
Create/Edit feature-linked annotation
View feature-linked annotation
Direct support of many raster formats (2)
Data conversion and management (3)
Includes ArcInfo Workstation
License type
Single-use and floating
Floating only
Floating only
Operating Systems

Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP (4)

Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP (4)
ArcInfo Desktop
Windows NT,
Windows 2000, and
Windows XP (4).
ArcInfo Workstation
adds UNIX support.

1 ArcView supports simple features (points, lines, polygons, and static annotation) in a personal geodatabase, not rules and relationships.
2 ArcView and ArcEditor support more than 25 raster formats. ArcInfo supports more than 30 raster formats.
3 ArcToolbox in ArcView and ArcEditor contains 36 basic data conversion tools. ArcToolbox in ArcInfo contains more than 170 data management, analysis, and conversion tools.
4 ArcGIS Desktop supports both Windows XP Home Edition and Windows XP Professional.

Resources, References, and Acknowledgements

Contact: Charles Burchill       Telephone: (204) 789-3429

Manitoba Centre for Health Policy
Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Manitoba
4th floor Brodie Centre
408 - 727 McDermot Avenue
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3E 3P5       Fax: (204) 789-3910
Last modified on Thursday, 29-May-2008 11:52:21 CDT