All Topics

This knowledge area embodies a variety of data driven analytics, geocomputational methods, simulation and model driven approaches designed to study complex spatial-temporal problems, develop insights into characteristics of geospatial data sets, create and test geospatial process models, and construct knowledge of the behavior of geographically-explicit and dynamic processes and their patterns.

Topics in this Knowledge Area are listed thematically below. Existing topics are in regular font and linked directly to their original entries (published in 2006; these contain only Learning Objectives). Entries that have been updated and expanded are in bold. Forthcoming, future topics are italicized


Methodological Context Surface & Field Analyses Space-Time Analysis & Modeling
Geospatial Analysis & Model Building Modeling Surfaces Time Geography
Changing Context of GIScience Gridding, Interpolation, and Contouring Capturing Spatio-Temporal Dynamics in Computational Modeling 
Building Blocks Inverse Distance Weighting GIS-Based Computational Modeling
Overlay & Combination Operations Radial Basis & Spline Functions Computational Movement Analysis
Areal Interpolation Polynomial Functions Volumes and Space-Time Volumes
Aggregation of Spatial Entities Kriging Interpolation  
Classification & Clustering LiDAR Point Cloud Analysis Geocomputational Methods & Models
Boundaries & Zone Membership Intervisibility, Line-of-Sight, and Viewsheds Cellular Automata
Spatial Queries Digital Elevation Models & Terrain Metrics Agent-based Modeling
Buffers TIN-based Models and Terrain Metrics Simulation Modeling
Grid Operations & Map Algebra Watersheds & Drainage Artificial Neural Networks
Data Exploration & Spatial Statistics 3D Parametric Surfaces Genetic Algorithms & Evolutionary Computing 
Spatial Statistics Network & Location Analysis Big Data & Geospatial Analysis
Spatial Sampling for Spatial Analysis Intro to Network & Location Analysis Problems & with Large Spatial Databases
Exploratory Spatial Data Analysis (ESDA) Location & Service Area Problems Pattern Recognition & Matching
Point Pattern Analysis Network Route & Tour Problems Artificial Intelligence Approaches
Kernels & Density Estimation Modelling Accessibility Intro to Spatial Data Mining
Spatial Interaction Location-allocation Modeling Rule Learning for Spatial Data Mining
Cartographic Modeling The Classic Transportation Problem Machine Learning Approaches
Multi-criteria Evaluation   CyberGIS and Cyberinfrastructure
Grid-based Statistics and Metrics   Analysis of Errors & Uncertainty
Landscape Metrics   Error-based Uncertainty
Hot-spot and Cluster Analysis   Conceptual Models of Error & Uncertainty
Global Measures of Spatial Association   Spatial Data Uncertainty
Local Indicators of Spatial Autocorrelation   Problems of Scale & Zoning
Simple Regression & Trend Surface Analysis   Thematic Accuracy & Assessment
Geographically Weighted Regression   Stochastic Simulation & Monte Carlo Methods
Spatial Autoregressive & Bayesian Methods   Mathematical Models of Uncertainty
Spatial Filtering Models   Fuzzy Aggregation Operators


AM-94 - Machine Learning Approaches

Machine learning approaches are increasingly used across numerous applications in order to learn from data and generate new knowledge discoveries, advance scientific studies and support automated decision making. In this knowledge entry, the fundamentals of Machine Learning (ML) are introduced, focusing on how feature spaces, models and algorithms are being developed and applied in geospatial studies. An example of a ML workflow for supervised/unsupervised learning is also introduced. The main challenges in ML approaches and our vision for future work are discussed at the end.

AM-06 - Map algebra
  • Explain the categories of map algebra operations (i.e., local, focal, zonal, and global functions)
  • Explain why georegistration is a precondition to map algebra
  • Differentiate between map algebra and matrix algebra using real examples
  • Perform a map algebra calculation using command line, form-based, and flow charting user interfaces
  • Describe a real modeling situation in which map algebra would be used (e.g., site selection, climate classification, least-cost path)
  • Describe how map algebra performs mathematical functions on raster grids
AM-48 - Mathematical models of uncertainty: probability and statistics
  • Devise simple ways to represent probability information in GIS
  • Describe the basic principles of randomness and probability
  • Compute descriptive statistics and geostatistics of geographic data
  • Interpret descriptive statistics and geostatistics of geographic data
  • Recognize the assumptions underlying probability and geostatistics and the situations in which they are useful analytical tools
AM-82 - Microsimulation and calibration of agent activities
  • Describe a “bottom-up” simulation from an activity-perspective with changes in the locations and/or activities the individual person (and/or vehicle) in space and time, in the activity patterns and space-time trajectories created by these activity patterns, and in the consequent emergent phenomena, such as traffic jams and land-use patterns
  • Describe how various parameters in an agent-based model can be modified to evaluate the range of behaviors possible with a model specification
  • Describe how measurements on the output of a model can be used to describe model behavior
AM-44 - Modelling Accessibility

Modelling accessibility involves combining ideas about destinations, distance, time, and impedances to measure the relative difficulty an individual or aggregate region faces when attempting to reach a facility, service, or resource. In its simplest form, modelling accessibility is about quantifying movement opportunity. Crucial to modelling accessibility is the calculation of the distance, time, or cost distance between two (or more) locations, which is an operation that geographic information systems (GIS) have been designed to accomplish. Measures and models of accessibility thus draw heavily on the algorithms embedded in a GIS and represent one of the key applied areas of GIS&T.

AM-13 - Multi-criteria evaluation
  • Describe the implementation of an ordered weighting scheme in a multiple-criteria aggregation
  • Compare and contrast the terms multi-criteria evaluation, weighted linear combination, and site suitability analysis
  • Differentiate between contributing factors and constraints in a multi-criteria application
  • Explain the legacy of multi-criteria evaluation in relation to cartographic modeling
  • Determine which method to use to combine criteria (e.g., linear, multiplication)
  • Create initial weights using the analytical hierarchy process (AHP)
  • Calibrate a linear combination model by adjusting weights using a test data set
AM-66 - Multi-layer feed-forward neural networks
  • Analyze the stability of the network using multiple runs with the same training data and architecture
  • Compare and contrast classification results when the architecture of the network and initial parameters are changed
  • Differentiate between feed-forward and recurrent architectures
  • Describe the architecture and components of a feed-forward neural network