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Finding Spatial Data for Mapping (GIS): Home

Includes spatial data sources and mapping tools and support persons. Boston College supports several Geographic Information Systems software packages on campus.

Current Articles about GIS

Full text links for the BC Community.


Boston College supports the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in teaching, research and administrative projects. GIS is a database management system for capture, storage, retrieval, analysis, and display of spatial data and related information.

To request a GIS class presentation or GIS consultation for a research project contact:

Barbara Mento
Constantin Andronache


The GIS Team will work with faculty members to customize GIS integration into courses and support research projects. Support includes identifying GIS data, assistance in developing maps for course material, overview and demonstration of  ArcGIS software and hands on workshops for smaller groups of students.

2015 GIS Contest Winners Announced

It is with great pleasure that the Boston College Libraries announce the winners of the Sixth Annual Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Mapping Contest at Boston College

The first place award of a $100 Amazon Gift Card went to:

 David Beutel, EESC - Geology, graduate prize: "Groundwater Monitoring in an Aquifer Contaminated by Road Salt". 

Stephen Loverde, A&S 2015 in Environmental Geoscience , undergraduate prize: “Reducing Food Insecurity: Revitalizing Farmers' Markets in the United States “.

The second place award of a $50 Amazon Gift Card, went to:

Shaun Glaze, Applied Developmental and Educational Psychology, graduate prize: "Mapping Justice in East Boston and Revere".

Catherine Goldberg, A&S 2016 in Geological Sciences, undergraduate prize:  “Climate Change in Massachusetts”. 

The third place award of a $25 Amazon Gift Card went to:

Alexa Villalobos, MBA/Carroll School of Management, graduate prize: ” Determining Promising Locations for Team Impact New Offices”.

Elissa Knight, A&S 2015, Environmental Geoscience and Sociology, undergraduate prize: “Child Poverty in the United States”


Awards were based on map quality, use of GIS as a research tool and originality.  Special consideration was given to topics depicting social implications of the research such as environmental issues. The awards were  presented Wednesday, April 22nd at 3:00 p.m. in the O’Neill Lobby by University Librarian, Tom Wall.   

Past winning posters can be found in the university Institutional Repository,  eScholarship@BC at, under the category Juried Student Work. The entries of our newest winners will join this distinguished group. 

For more information about GIS data and services at Boston College please contact: Barbara Mento, Data/GIS Librarian or visit our research guide: Finding Spatial Data for Mapping (GIS) at:

Special thanks to the contest judges:

Rudolph Hon, Associate Professor, Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences ; Constantin Andronache, Research Associate, Research Services, ITS; Sally Wyman, Science Librarian, Enid Karr,  Science Librarian and Barbara Mento, Data/GIS Librarian



News and New Books

Free Online Tutorials

Sign up for a free online tutorial from ESRI, producer of the ArcGIS software:

Getting Started with GIS (for ArcGIS 10)

Just create a free online account and go to this free 9 hour course.

Course description from website: This course provides a foundation for understanding what a geographic information system is and the possibilities it offers for discovering patterns, relationships, and trends. You will learn how GIS maps are different from other types of paper and digital maps, what makes the data used in a GIS unique, and how to use GIS software to obtain information and create meaningful maps. In interactive exercises and activities throughout the course, you will work with ArcGIS software and see how a GIS supports problem solving in many different contexts.

For  a full list of free ESRI courses go to the ESRI Training Catalog

Subject Guide

Barbara Mento
O'Neill 313