GIS Research


Over the life of the American Migrations project, this page will be a repository of links to current research on teaching and learning with GIS, spatial reasoning, and African American and Latino migrations.Please contact us to suggest resources that should be added to this page.

website description To learn more about GIS -- what it is, who, uses it, and how it works -- check out this resource from ESRI.

ESRI GIS Education Community: community-building tools and resources to expand your knowledge of GIS and its support for learning and teaching. TeachSpatial: a collaborative web site devoted to promoting applications of spatial concepts and spatial tools in teaching and learning.
Learning to Think Spatially: GIS as a Support System in the K-12 Curriculum - the National Research Council's report explaining the nature and functions of spatial thinking and shows how spatial thinking can be supported across the K-12 curriculum through the development of appropriate support systems.

ESRI’s GIS in Education Research Bibliography: This bibliography of educational literature identifies work describing the practices of teaching and learning with GIS. The bibliography features research integrating curriculum, pedagogy, and GIS.

Selected publications on the geography of African American and Latino American migrations:


Bada, X., Fox, J. & Selee, A. (Eds). Invisible No More: Mexican Migrant Civic Participation in the U.S. Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars-University of California-Santa Cruz, 2006. (Bilingual edition)

Halle, D., & Beveridge, A. A. (Eds.). (2013). New York and Los Angeles: The Uncertain Future. Oxford University Press. Link to Book

William H. Frey, "The New Great Migration: Black Americans' Return to the South, 1965–2000", The Brookings Institution, May 2004, pp. 1–3.


Wilkes, R., and Iceland, J. (2004). Hypersegregation in the Twenty-First Century. Demography 41(1), pp. 23-36. Link to Article

Selected publications on GIS and spatial reasoning:

Kerski, J. (2008). The world at the student’s fingertips: Internet-based GIS education opportunities. In M. Alibrandi & A. Milson (Eds.), Digital Geography: Geo-spatial Technologies in the Social Studies Classroom (pp. 119-134). Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.

Marsh, M., Golledge, R. & Battersby, S. E. (2008). Geospatial concept understanding and recognition in G6–college students: A preliminary argument for minimal GIS. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 97(4):696–712.

Goodchild, M. F. (2008). Combining space and time: new potential for temporal GIS. In A. K. Knowles, (Ed.) Placing History: How Maps, Spatial Data, and GIS Are Changing Historical Scholarship. (pp. 179-198) Redlands, CA: ESRI Press.

Goodchild, M. F., Anselin, L., Appelbaum, R. P., & Harthorn, B. H. (2000). Toward spatially integrated social science. International Regional Science Review, 23(2):139-159.

Goodchild M. F. & Janelle, D. G. (2004). Thinking spatially in the social sciences. In M. F. Goodchild & D. G. Janelle, (Eds.), Spatially Integrated Social Science. (pp. 3–22). New York: Oxford University Press.


Selected publications of the American Migrations research team:

Bada, X. (2011) Participatory Planning Across Borders: Mexican Migrant Civic Engagement In Community Development. The Latin Americanist, 55(4), pp. 9-33. Link to Article

Bada, X., Fox, J., Donnelly, R., Selee, A.D. (2010) Context Matters: Latino Immigrant Civic Engagement in Nine US Cities, Reports on Latino Immigrant Civic Engagement. Download PDF

Olmedo, I. M. (2008). We have a voice: Children learn about immigrant and citizenship rights. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA (April 2009).

Radinsky, J. (2008). GIS for History: a GIS learning environment to teach historical reasoning. In Alibrandi, M. & A. Milson (Eds.), Digital Geography: Geo-spatial Technologies in the Social Studies Classroom: 99-117.  Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.

Radinsky, J., Loh, B. & Lukasik, J. (2008). GIS tools for historical inquiry: Issues for classroom-centered design. Journal of the Association of History and Computing, XI(2).

Radinsky, J. (2008). Students’ roles in group-work with visual data: A site of science learning. Cognition & Instruction, 26(2): 145-194.

Radinsky, J., Alamar, K., & Oliva, S. (2010). Camila, the earth, and the sun: Constructing an idea as shared intellectual property. Journal of Research in Science Teaching,47(6): 619-642.

Radinsky, J., Alamar, K., Leimberer, J., Rodriguez, C., & J. Trigueros (2005).  Science investigations with GIS: Helping students develop the need to know more.  Spectrum: Journal of the Illinois Science Teachers' Association, 31 (2): 34-42.

Radinsky, J. (2010, June). Building nuanced historical narratives around geographic data. In O’Neill, Polman, Kolikant & Radinsky (Contributors) symposium, Understanding a future with multiple pasts: Projects on meta-historical understanding. In Proceedings of the International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS), Chicago IL.

Radinsky, J., Goldman, S., & Singer, M. (2008, June). Students' sense-making with visual data in small-group argumentation. In Proceedings of the International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS), Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Radinsky, J. (2004, June).  Teaching the teaching of history with digital resources: Possibilities and limitations of an on-line inquiry project in a methods course.  In Proceedings of the International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS), Santa Monica CA.

Radinsky, J., Smolin, L. Lawless, K., =& M. Newman (2003, March) School-University Collaborative Design Teams. In Proceedings of Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education (SITE), Albuquerque NM.

Loh, B., Radinsky, J., Russell, E., Gomez, L. M., Reiser, B. J., & Edelson, D. C. (1998). The Progress Portfolio: Designing reflective tools for a classroom context. In Human Factors in Computing Systems: Proceedings of CHI 1998: 627-634. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.


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.