Enhance Your GIS Skills With Free GIS Education & Learning Over Coffee

For many of us, there’s a 10-20 minute block each and every day, typically around 10 or 10:30 AM when we grab a cup, kick back for a few minutes and chill with a hot cup of coffee, tea or a favorite beverage of some sort. But what if we spend that time learning, upgrading our skills, and taking on a small personal challenge. That 15 minutes per day adds up to 75 minutes a week, about 315 minutes per month, and over 3,700 minutes (or 63 hours) per year! That’s some valuable time that we could take advantage of!

Enhance Your GIS Skills Over Coffee!

So, how to turn coffee break into some prime learning time? The following are just a few suggested GIS learning resources and activities that  you can participate in for a little professional development each day while you unwind with a cup of coffee:

Learn About Story Maps

No doubt you’ve heard about the Esri story map technology? Here’s some fine learning materials that will get you up and running and creating maps in no time. Caution though, this is slightly addictive! In these lessons, you’ll author story maps using interactive builders. You’ll save your stories in ArcGIS Online and share them with the world.

esri story map journal

Add Analytics to Story Maps

Are you a story map expert already? That’s awesome… here’s a new resource from Maptiks that enables you to add analytics to your maps. Check out the blog and learn how to take your maps to the next level and really impress the boss as well!

Attend DevSummit again!

Did you attend the 2017 Esri DevSummit? If you did you can enjoy everything once again and check out presentations that you missed.  Esri has put hours of video up on Youtube to educate you on all the latest technologies and solutions. These videos will inform, educate, and entertain you for hours and keep you busy all year!

Enjoy Esri360 Videos

Esri 360 is a fabulous resource with hours and hours of entertaining and informative video archive for you to enjoy. Sharpen your GIS skills, learn about ArcGIS technology and much more.  Esri 360 is all about the Science of Where

Learn How To Map in OpenStreetMap

We are all familiar with OpenStreetMap (OSM) but are you in the know about how to work with it? This video is produced by the U.S. State Department’s Humanitarian Information Unit for their MapGive campaign. For those of you wanting to use OSM in the Esri environment you can learn more about this with the OSM Editor for ArcGIS

Esri Collector Free Training

Watch the first lesson from GeoMattix’s “GPS Mapping with Esri’s Collector App” for free. Take 20 minutes to learn the fundamentals and you’ll be up and running in no time. Then add the collector to your device and start collecting data for a pet project!


Collector for ArcGIS Training from Joseph Kerski – Follow Joseph’s geographyuberalles channel for TONS of fine GEO EDU and learning videos

Massive Online Courses (MOOCs) from Penn State

Penn State is offering courses on the leading MOOC platform, Coursera, to explore the benefits of providing noncredit, free online courses on a large scale. Some fantastic learning opportunities in this popular offering from Penn State U. Learn about maps and the geospatial revolution, mapping for infectious diseases, and Geodesign principles.

Lessons for Managing Flood Disasters

In these lessons, you’ll create the unit hydrographs for an outlet on the downstream end of the Little River. First, you’ll prepare elevation data and use it to determine the watershed area for the outlet. Based on your watershed and terrain data, you’ll create a velocity field, which determines how fast water tends to move in your study area. Presented in Story Map format .

Esri MOOCs

Esri offers a number of Free MOOCs that will educate you on important technologies and topics, guaranteed to help your career! They also share other EDU opportunities from partner institutions. Some great stuff here!

ArcGIS DevLabs

If you are new to the ArcGIS DevLabs, they are short tutorials that step you through the process of building geospatial apps with the ArcGIS platform. The labs are very short (5-15 minutes each) and you can complete them in any order you want and in the language of your choice: JavaScript, Android, iOS, or with any of the Runtime APIs. Note: there’s 30 new labs!

Learn GIS with Coursera

Explore the world of spatial analysis and cartography with geographic information systems (GIS). In this class you will learn the basics of the industry’s leading software tool, ArcGIS, during four week-long modules

Learn to become a Data Scientist

Dataquest is a great learning resource offering free training to help you become a data scientist (a top career opportunity recently). LEarn Python and other in-demand skills . Learn by writing code, working with data, and building projects in your browser.

FAA UAV Test Preparation

Is your organization using UAV / drone technology? Perhaps they could / should be and you want to be the champion. If so, a great way to start is to get educated on the FAA license requirements and get prepared to take your test. There’s many resources  including preparation tests that can help you. See also the official FAA site and get started there.

Learn Python

For developers and would-be developers Python is all the rage in GIS and geotech. There’s a number of fine online resources where you can learn a little bit each day, eventually leading to you being a Python pro! Try CodeAcademy, the learnpython.org resource, http://dataquest.io and Code School. This free E-book is also a fabulous getting started resource!


The 2017 Map Reading quiz!

In time for National Map Reading Week, test your map reading skills with our map reading quiz. Take the quiz and challenge others in your org to see who does the best!

Mapbox Education

No doubt you’ve heard about MApbox, well now you can learn about it with some hands-on training. From custom cartography to spatial analysis, from processing imagery to web mapping, Mapbox lets you build anything geo. Enjoy this excellent resource and learn a new skill with a new tool.

mapbox education


Adopt free Admin Tools for ArcGIS Online

Are you an ArcGIS Online user? If you happen to be the Admin in your org or perhaps you want to be, check out our Admin Tools for ArcGIS Online (Free). There’s more than 50 tools at your disposal that will help you to be more productive and manage your org and your data holdings and webmaps more efficiently. Learn all about a new tool each week. After one year you’ll be a Pro!  For additional help take advantage of our Knowledge Base.

learn admin tools


Have you recently completed some online GIS or related training? Please share your GIS EDU Tips with us on Twitter @geojobegis

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