Education in Geographic information systems usability and user-adaptivity

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The objective of this paper is to advance the usability and adaption for users of geographic information systems(GIS) by developing suitably trained professionals via a tailored graduate program. Human-computer interaction models are useful in analyzing the use of GIS in specific task situations.Such analysis provides a sound basis for GIS use optiomization.GIS applications,i.e., in environmental protection or urban and regional planning, require entirely different user interfaces that for those where users are experts. Building such interfaces taking into account GIS usability and adaptation to the user appears to be a promising approach.This could be achieved by careful analysis of GIS utilization and dynamic adaptation to user preferences and interests, the given task,goals and actual work context.The students should learn the usablity principles and how to apply them for designing GIS user interfaces.In addition, they should know to analyze GIS user tasks,interests, and preferences and adapt GIS user interfaces to them.This paper integrates these two complementary disciplines.Examples using ArcView illustrating GIS usability and user adaptivity are given.A MS GIS program with specification in usability and user-adaptive systems is proposed.


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interdisciplinary education programs, GIS usability, GIS adaptability