GIS Joins Lab

This lab will teach:

Tasking: Details:

Data Acquisition

Download, Do early Data Layer File name and location on your hard drive
Yes (should be simple) Download Tiger Census Blocks shapefile  
  Subset Blocks shapefile to just your county (filter with county FIPS codes)  
Yes (should be simple) Download Tiger Census Block groups shapefile  
  Subset Block groups shapefile to just your county  
Yes (should be simple) Download Tiger Census Tracts shapefile  
  Subset tracts shapefile to just your county  
Yes (big but simple) Download National coverage Census Bureau SF1 shapefile by tracts (it has a metadata file with it)  
  Subset SF1 shapefile to just your county (filter with county and state FIPS codes, which are the first 5 characters of the GEOID field, so use GEOID='24003*').  Because of the size of this file, the subset is critical.  
  Rename fields in subset SF1  
Yes; will be complicated Download American Community Survey Data for your county, by tracts  
  Modify CSV file from American Community survey (rename a few fields, and delete the rest)  
  Import American Community survey as DBF file.  If you have a coastal region, there are often tracts with 0 population.  These will skew your color coding by field, and it will probably improve your map if you filter them out and perhaps save the shapefile without them.
Add leading zeros to repair Zip or FIPS codes.

Data analysis:

  1. Open a  map.
  2. Link/join the demographic data to the shapefile with region outlines.  You must correctly match the geometry with the correct demographics (you cannot match block groups with tracts, for instance) for the ACS data.
  3. Plot maps of parameters  from the "Plot" button menu on the database table display window,
  4. Computations you want
  5. Double click on the area field header, and get Field statistics (min, max, mean, etc.)  Make a table with this information
  6. Adjust the color in the underlying map to de-emphasize the background and let this data dominate, but the background helps the viewer locate the points of interest.

CSV file import problems

Last revision 1/30/2017