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Gratitude in Action: Using survey insights to improve our work

In the Spring, a survey was sent out to K-12 educators to gain feedback on our ArcGIS resources. Thank you to all who responded. Find out what we discovered.

The purpose of the Learning survey that was sent out in early June, was to gather feedback on the accessibility, ease of use and content of our K-12 ArcGIS learning resources. This blog post summarizes the findings and our response to the educators’ suggestions in the survey.

The results of the survey:

  • 82% of respondents knew we provided free resources and most of them have used at least one of our resources
  • Most respondents teach grades 4-6 and 9-12, in social studies, geography, history, and science subjects. Topics of interest include energy use, resource management, human rights, trading partners and outdoor education.
  • Online interactive activities and online documents are requested formats
  • 85% of respondents use our resources one or more times per school term

Recommendations and Requests

The following are suggestions for us to consider based on challenges noted in the
open-ended questions:

Resource clean-up (remove or update resources with old technology)
ArcGIS Online is updated a few times a year. We do our best to keep up to date with the changes. In the past few months, we have been working on removing outdated resources and updating our introductory resources:

Check out our latest updates to our introductory resources for ArcGIS:
For educators: Let’s get started with ArcGIS Online (Map Viewer)

For students: Enroute with ArcGIS Online (Map Viewer)

Proximity and Hot Spot Analysis tutorial
In this tutorial, you will learn how to use ArcGIS Online tools to analyse crime as part of the Career Path Series on GIS in Crime Analysis. Proximity, Analyze Patterns and Summarize Data tools will be used to explore break and enters that occurred in Toronto and how the analysis can help the Toronto Police Service (TPS) make informed decisions.

A map displaying analysis of break and enters in Toronto.

Learn how to use ArcGIS like a crime analyst in the Proximity and Hot Spot Analysis tutorial.

Getting to know the Map Viewer
In this tutorial, you will learn how to navigate and access the tools in the Map Viewer in ArcGIS Online. The new design of this application includes two toolbars that allow you to access different tools when working with your map.

The Map Viewer Basics
This tutorial will teach you the basics of navigating and using the Map Viewer in ArcGIS Online. You will change a basemap, enable labels on a layer, view a table, create spatial bookmarks, view and hide layers, measure features on a map and save a map.

Adding and Working with Data in the Map Viewer
This tutorial will teach you how to add data (features and data layers) to the Map Viewer. You will learn how to filter data and change the display of your data on your map. Note: Before you work on this tutorial - you should complete the tutorial Getting to know the Map Viewer. This resource goes over the different sections (Contents and Settings toolbars) of the Map Viewer and the tools that are available to you.

Many more teacher training opportunities/ instructor-led professional development

Check out our latest blog post on Summer PD and our most commonly requested workshops. If you are interested in PD for the upcoming school year, contact us at

A screenshot of the Canadian Geographic Education Summer Conference.

Register for the upcoming Canadian Geographic Education Summer Conference on August 23rd, where we will be facilitating two workshops in English and two in French.

More promotion of single sign on (SSO) to solve sign-in woes.

We hear you and we agree! SSO is a great way to access ArcGIS Online for teachers and students. We want everyone to go that way!

Discover 5 Reasons to set up ArcGIS Online single sign on at your school or board
Every year, more schools and school boards in Canada are enjoying the benefits of setting up ArcGIS Online single sign on (SSO). Discover 5 reasons to go SSO and hear from educators on their experiences.

Clear and succinct on-boarding resources for teachers new to ArcGIS Online

Our intro resources are available in text and video format for different types of learners.

Let’s get started with ArcGIS Online
Resources to support educators getting started with ArcGIS Online (Map Viewer).

A screenshot of a Canadian demographic data map in ArcGIS Online.

Discover how you can search and add data to create a map in ArcGIS Online with the Let’s get started with ArcGIS Online resource.

New resource alert:

Check out this new resource called ArcCanada Atlas. It’s a great introduction to ArcGIS Online maps and content in English and French.

A screenshot of the ArcCanada Atlas resource.

The ArcCanada Atlas is a great resource for teachers and students exploring physical and human phenomenon in Canada, in English and French.

More French resources
Our French resource expert, Arabelle Sauvé has been busy this year. Check out our latest French resources:

En route avec ArcGIS Online
Voici trois tutoriels pour initier les élèves du primaire et du secondaire aux SIG et à la plateforme ArcGIS Online.

Montre-moi tes données!
Ce tutoriel vous permettra d'explorer plusieurs façons de trouver des données de qualité pour vos projets cartographiques.

A screenshot of the French resource on how to explore data in ArcGIS Online.

The Montre-moi tes données! shows you how to discover data in ArcGIS Online.

Until next year’s survey, continue to include ArcGIS in your teaching! Please contact us with suggestions on new resources at Happy Mapping!

About the Author

Angela Alexander is a K-12 Education Specialist in the Esri Canada Education and Research group. She has over 15 years of experience working with educators across Canada. Angela focuses on producing geographic information system (GIS) and curriculum-specific resources, and conducting and creating custom workshops for educators. She manages the GIS Ambassador Program and is the Technical Chair for the annual Skills Ontario GIS competition. Angela also writes monthly posts for the Esri Canada Education and Research blog, highlighting K-12 educators and partners, new ArcGIS resources and GIS-related events.

Profile Photo of Angela Alexander