November 2018 Data Visualization Display @ O’Neill Library

November 14 is GIS Day, but at O’Neill Library we’ll be celebrating all month-long! Stop by the GIS themed book display (curated by Barbara Mento) in the third floor lobby and check out the visualizations on the digital display (next to the POP collection). The display will showcase a selection of data visualizations created by Boston College undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff using a variety of GIS software and platforms. Each source is linked to the original site where you can further explore the associated data, visualization, or literature.

The Boston College Tree Inventory poster created by Kevin Keegan received first place in the 2010 Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Mapping Contest at Boston College. He created the visualization in ArcMap (ArcGIS) and used data collected about trees on the Newton, Chestnut Hill, and Brighton campuses. The data inventory was created by the Office of Sustainability at Boston College with the goal of demonstrating Boston College’s carbon footprint.

The Seismic Map for New England and adjacent regions created by the Weston Observatory visualizes seismic activity and earthquake epicenters in the area for the period of January 1975 to October 2013. The Weston Observatory records earthquake activity (since the 1930s!) using seismic instruments with an emphasis on the northeastern United States. You can view a live feed of seismic activity in the region via the New England Seismic Network station. If you are in the O’Neill Library you can view seismic activity on the seismograph in the study area on Level One.

If you have ever wondered where most of the Boston College undergraduate students come from, you can find this answer in the Geographic Distribution of Undergraduate Students resource. This visualization created using Tableau software depicts enrollment over time per state/province and enrollment by US Census Region from 1976 through 2017. The data is drawn from several sources, including Institutional Research, Planning & Assessment, Office of Student Services, Registrar, U.S. Census Regions. A similar visualization was created to show where graduate international students come from and how enrollment has changed since 1991 through 2018. The underlying data was drawn from the Office of International Students and Scholars and Office of Dean for Student Development at Boston College. Both of these visualizations were created by the Office of Institutional Research, Planning & Assessment.

Each year the Boston College Libraries hold a GIS contest. Students are encouraged to submit their mapping work and top entries will be awarded to undergraduate and graduate students! The deadline for the 2019 contest is April 4, 2019. The first place winners from 2018 were Michaela Simoneau (Undergraduate, International Studies, Biology/MCAS) for The Plight of the Rohingya Refugee: Assessing current and predicted health and sanitation challenges and Abolfazl Sotoudeh-Sherbaf (Graduate, Sociology) for Iran’s 2018 Protests: Spatial Diffusion, Socio-Economics, and Climate Change.