Paper No. 313-10
Presentation Time: 10:30 AM
USE OF WEB GIS AND SATELLITE IMAGERY FOR COMMUNICATING CONCEPTS OF UNCERTAINTY IN EARTH SCIENCE DATA
The concepts of uncertainty are a critical component of the quality of geospatial data in the earth sciences, including GIS, satellite imagery, and field collection data points. Increasing interest in policy implications of climate change underscore the importance of understanding the uncertainty inherent to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions data, particularly in terms of explanations for undergraduate students and communicating science to the general public. Despite its importance, students and beginning GIS users often neglect to examine measures of uncertainty found in metadata or consider impacts on analysis. A sample of NASA GHG data sets used for mapping atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases are presented as case examples for teaching concepts of uncertainty in courses including fully focused on geospatial analysis or including some aspects. Teaching modules are presented for the concepts of spatial uncertainty, attribute uncertainty, and vagueness found in determining borders of greenhouse gas emissions. Use of web GIS tools and open source GIS software is highlighted for teaching each of the modules and summary recommendations for teaching concepts for upper and lower division students as well as public science communication are provided.