GEOGRAPHY 305: Maps and Graphics 

Text:   Principles of Map Design, by Judith Tyner, The Guilford Press, New, NY, 2010.

Learning Outcomes: The central goal of this class is to provide an introduction to the field of cartography which is the art and science of making maps along with their study as documents for geographic visualization.

By the end of this course you will have learned:

  1. to communicate graphically. Graphic expression is a basic form of communication that can carry meaning of the real world.
  2. to read maps.  Maps show spatial relationships at a point in time and the selected symbols create patterns that reveal the effects of natural and human processes.
  3.  to develop a critical eye. The communication of a map is guided by the choice of content and the employment of color, text, and symbology to emphasize features. Yet errors in the creation process may result in a confusing or misleading message.
  4. an appreciation of the current scene. You will learn about the size and shape of the earth and the distortions that occur when places on the globe are transferred to a flat surface through projections. Maps also reveal something of changing human interest in the world. They reflect the attitudes, abilities, reactions, interests of a larger society, not just the ability of a single cartographer.
  5. some basic skills in data handling and manipulation. You will learn the different scales of data and how to make simple calculations such as percents, densities, and other ratios.
  6. practical skills in digital map construction through a series of laboratory exercises. Students completing this class will have learned the basic elements of map design, how to construct some of the more common types of thematic maps, and the functions of software designed to download, manipulate, and graphically display data.

 

Exercises:  Will be assigned at the beginning of a lab period and are to be turned in at the end of the day scheduled for completion (1 or 2 weeks later).

                Students do not realize the time required for completing the map projects and in recent years some have gotten in the habit of not attending the lab during scheduled hours or in leaving very early. Often helpful comments are given on a lab assignment during its execution and so any student who is not present or leaves early may be placed at a disadvantage.  Students are expected to be present during the entire lab period unless an assignment is completed. Attendance will be taken. Assignments turned in late will receive a lower grade.

                Most projects can be completed during class time, but students may find it helpful to spend time outside of class to work on their projects.  Other classes occupy the lab Monday through Thursday, but sometimes (with permission) you may work during the lab periods of these other classes.  Some classes also meet in the evening.  A Monday-Thursday night computer lab schedule will be developed.

Exams: The same grade (+/-) will be assigned to the lecture and lab parts of this class. However, 2/3 of your grade will be based on the lab assignments and 1/3 based on the lecture. The lecture grade will be based on two mid-term exams and a scale quiz.  The lab grade will be based on a series of exercises each counting 10-20% of the grade. Attendance, timely submission of assignments, and participation will also influence the final grades.

Academic Dishonesty: as defined in the Standards for Student Conduct will not be tolerated. See  
www.csun.edu/a&r/soc/studentconduct.html for full details. The following extractions from that document are especially relevant:
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The following are the grounds upon which student discipline can be based:

(1) Dishonesty, including:

  1. Cheating, plagiarism, or other forms of academic dishonesty that are intended to gain unfair academic advantage.

(15) Misuse of computer facilities or resources, including:
Unauthorized entry into a file, for any purpose.

  1. Unauthorized transfer of a file.
  2. Use of another's identification or password.
  3. Use of computing facilities, campus network, or other resources to interfere with the work of another member of the University community.
  4. Use of computing facilities and resources to send obscene or intimidating and abusive messages.
  5. Use of computing facilities and resources to interfere with normal University operations.
  6. Use of computing facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws.
  7. Violation of a campus computer use policy.

Instructors are responsible for setting both the academic and behavioral standards for their courses. Students are expected to comply with established class standards as well as the Student Conduct Code. Students who display disruptive, threatening or abusive behavior in class are subject to student discipline. Faculty may eject a student from a single class session when necessary to end seriously disruptive or threatening behavior. Such actions will be reported to the appropriate campus officials.
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Students with disabilities must register with the Center on Disabilities and complete a services agreement each semester. Staff within the Center will verify the existence of a disability based on the documentation provided and approve accommodations. Students who are approved for testing taking accommodations must provide a proctor form to their faculty member signed by a counselor in the Center on Disabilities prior to making testing arrangements. The Center on Disabilities is located in Bayramian Hall, room 110. Staff can be reached at (818) 677-2684.


Schedule:

FIRST WEEK - INTRODUCTION, MAP ELEMENTS
Readings:                                Tyner  Chapt. 1, 2
Robinson:                                  Value of Maps to a Liberal Education
Other Readings:                         Muehrcke, Maps in Literature

SECOND WEEK - MAP TYPE
Readings:  Tyner:  Chapt. 3

THIRD WEEK - HISTORICAL CARTOGRAPHY

FOURTH WEEK - GLOBE,  GRID SYSTEM S AND SCALE
Readings:     Tyner:  Chapt. 5, pp 91-98

FIFTH WEEK - PROJECTIONS                                                                                                              
Readings:     Tyner: pp 99-128

SIXTH WEEK - DATA AND ATTRIBUTES
Readings:     Tyner:  pp 131-136

SEVENTH WEEK - GRAPHS
Design: http://www.sapdesignguild.org/resources/diagram_guidelines/diagram_bk.html 
Design: http://www.orau.gov/pbm/handbook/2p21.html

EIGHTH WEEK - THE U.S.CENSUS
Early census: http://www2.census.gov/prod2/decennial/documents/HisGrow1790-1890/HisGrow02.pdf 
Data and documents:  http://www.census.gov

NINTH WEEK - MIDTERM EXAM

TENTH WEEK - MAP SYMBOLS 
Readings:  Tyner:  Pp 136-145, Chapt 4

S P R I N G   B R E A K

ELEVENTH WEEK - CHOROPLETH MAPS, CLASS INTERVALS
Readings:  Tyner:  pp. 159-168

TWELFTH WEEK -  LINEAR SYMBOLS
Readings:  Tyner:  Pp. 157-158, pp 169-176

THIRTEENTH WEEK - TERRAIN REPRESENTATION
Readings:
Methods: http://www.gis.unbc.ca/courses/geog205/lectures/reliefdepiction/index.php 
Examples of terrain models: http://www.terrainmodels.com/index.html
How to in Arcmap: http://mappingcenter.esri.com/index.cfm?fa=resources.gateway 
How to in Photoshop: http://www.shadedrelief.com/

FOURTEENTH WEEK - DOT AND GRADUATED SYMBOL MAPS
Readings:  Tyner:  Pp. 146-157

FIFTEENTH WEEK - MAP REPRODUCTION
Early methods: http://www.ritzlin.com/learn/printing.html 
Modern printing methods: http://www.orienteering.asn.au/technical/mapping/printingmaps/ 

FINAL EXAM