Whether you're collecting water quality, weather, or species distribution data, there are often patterns that are only visible in a geographic context. Geographic Information System (GIS) software can help students visualize data spatially but is often expensive and complex. With ESRI's ArcGIS online you can visualize data in seconds with a FREE account! Here's how to get started visualizing your geographic data!

Step 1: Collect your data using GPS sensor


Step 2: Export the data to a text file

  • Open the share menu
  • Select export data from the available options (connect a flash drive to export from the SPARK science learning system)

Step 3: Edit your data

Open the tab separated text file in a spreadsheet editor to manipulate heading names. It's important to remove any special characters like degree symbols from the headings.


Step 4: Login to ArcGIS Online

Sign up for a free public account or login to an existing account and go to the MAP tab.

Step 5: Drag the exported data onto the map


Step 6: Map the data fields for latitude and longitude


Step 7: That's it!

Now you can edit the layer to visualize the data for different sensors.