GIS Census Tools

What is a GIS?
GIS stands for Geographic Information System, and refers to software that combines an interactive map with a database that conveys more information (e.g., census data, geographical data, inventory and marketing data). A GIS can be used to display many layers of information on one map, using a variety of colors, shapes and labels. GIS maps are interactive, allowing users to ask questions, zoom in and out, move to different areas, and turn certain data sets on and off. There are many kinds of GIS tools, from professional-grade software used by geographers to enterprise software used by businesses to educational GIS tools used in history and social science classrooms.

 

What is a GIS Census Data Browser?

This site is focused on educational GIS tools that provide different ways to interact with census data. Below you will find links to several different educational GIS browsers. STAY TUNED for links to curriculum and lesson examples with each GIS tool.


Social Explorer Custom
Social Explorer
An interactive GIS map with comprehensive historical census data (1790-2010) at the state, county, and census tract levels, as well as reporting tools.
Main Website

Simplified GIS Map
AfAm Migration 1910-2010. Choropleth
AfAm Migration 1890-2010, Bubble
The Changing Roseland Community
U.S. Polish Ancestry over Time
Comparing segregation: Chicago and Raleigh
10 Simple Steps for Using Social Explorer

New York Times Immigration Explorer
Immigration Explorer
The New York Times' interactive GIS map with selected historical census data (1880-2000) showing immigrant populations from selected countries by county.
Main Website

New York Times 'Mapping Migration in the United States'
Mapping Migration
The New York Times' interactive GIS map that shows where people who lived in each state were born in the years 1900, 1950, and 2012.
Main Website

Social Explorer Custom
Google Maps
This popular mapping application can be used to easily create custom maps to go with particular texts or activities.
Main Website

Map of 77 Chicago Community Areas
Migration Map for The Circuit
Key Locations of the Civil Rights Movement

GIS for History
GIS for History
An interactive GIS map with selected historical census data (1790-2000) for five curriculum units with lesson plans for high school or undergraduate students. Also has links to online historical documents for each unit
Main Website

Great Migration Project Map
Immigration Project Map

Forbes American Migration Map

Forbes.com American Migration Map
Distilled from IRS data, this interative map shows how people have moved into and out of each county in the United States over time.
Main Website
 

The Racial Dot Map: One Dot Per Person
The Racial Dot Map
The map displays one dot for each person residing in the United States at the location they were counted during the 2010 Census. Each dot is color-coded by the individual's race and ethnicity.
Main Website

The New Littles

The New Littles
Not just Little Italy anymore: This interactive map highlights census tracts that have populations of 20% or higher with the same ancestry, highlighting the new Little Jamaica, Little Greece, Little France, and more.
Main Website

Mapping the 2010 Census
Mapping the 2010 Census
This interactive GIS map allows users to browse population growth and decline, changes in racial and ethnic concentrations and patterns of housing development that were captured in the 2010 census.
Main Website

factfinder.census.gov
factfinder.census.gov
Not a GIS mapping site, but a good tool for creating reports of census data (1990-2010) for states, cities, census tracts, or even blocks.
Main Website

News

March 23, 2015
NYT's new interactive Mapping Migrations tool shows where people in each state were born with data from 1900, 1950 and 2012!

March 20, 2015
Curriculum Modules Updates:
Latino Migrations (college level)

Describe Latino Populations (middle school)

Introduction to Reading Census Maps

March 1, 2015
Chicago Election Results in Relation to 2013 School Closings

February 27, 2015
GIS Map Shows Chicago Election Results

10 Steps for Using Social Explorer YouTube tutorial is here! Check it out here!

Featured Artifact
Cooper Center Racial Dot Map
One Dot Per Person: the Cooper Center's Racial Dot Map

The map displays one dot for each person residing in the United States at the location they were counted during the 2010 Census. Each dot is color-coded by the individual's race and ethnicity.