Partnering with Dr. Jim Carpenter, the course ENVR 440.01 asked the question “What is GIS, and why should I care?” Geographic Information Systems allow us to analyze and manage spatial (geographic) data. From your smartphone to your tablet, location enabled devices are present in almost every household, contributing to the flood of geographic data available today. With over 80% of all data having some type of spatial or geographical component, GIS has relevancy everywhere. This course will introduce students to GIS and the principles of spatial data in their personal life as well as applications of GIS across various disciplines. Major components of the course include computer representation of geographic information, the basics of GIS databases, spatial analysis with GIS, and application areas of GIS. At the end of the course, students will have an understanding of elementary GIS theory and examples of GIS-based solutions in the world around them.