In response to COVID-19 the library building is closed until further notice and library services are changing.

GIS Analysis

Geospatial data, often called Spatial Analysis, is the application of analytic techniques to a research problem when location is a significant or interesting aspect  of the research question. This is useful for researchers who are trying to understand the location of things, if and how they relate, what that relationship means, and if actions can be taken.

The Library provides support for the popular geographic information system (GIS) software package ArcGIS by ESRI. For information on acquiring and installing the software, please visit the ESRI ArcGIS page on the Computing and Communication Services (CCS) website.

Help Guides

Getting Started


To determine which version of ArcGIS you are using, open any ArcGIS application (e.g. ArcMap, ArcCatalog, ArcScene, etc.). The version number will appear on the splash screen (i.e. the image that appears while the application is loading.

Open Source Software and Tools



The Library offers workshops on a number of GIS and geospatial data-related topics every semester. Samples of workshop topics are listed below. To see the current semester's availability, please visit our list of upcoming workshops and events.

  • Finding and managing your geospatial data
  • Introduction to ArcGIS
  • Geoprocessing in ArcGIS
  • Introduction to Spatial Analyst
  • Introduction to 3D Analyst
  • Introduction to Spatial Statistics
  • Using Free Web-Based Mapping Tools for Research

ESRI Training Tutorials and Web Courses

ESRI provides the University of Guelph community with a large number of web courses and tutorials on ArcGIS. 

You require an invitation from the DRC to take the courses. Contact us at for an invitation

Some training tutorials or web courses recommended for beginners:

  • Getting started with GIS
  • Get starting with ArcMap
  • Exploring GIS maps
  • Basics of geographic coordinate systems
  • Solving spatial problems using ArcGIS

Recommended Foundational Courses

  • Learning ArcGIS Desktop
  • Geoprocessing with ArcGIS Desktop
  • Learning ArcGIS Spatial Analyst