Using GIS for Emergency Services


There is a shortage of people with the practical experience to apply GIS in an emergency management and response situation. As the occurrence of natural disasters continues to increase, it will be important for state agencies and local communities to have data collection applications ready for fast response to these events. Course exercises will provide practical hands-on spatial analysis using local data focused on emergency preparedness. Through lecture and hands-on course exercises, students will learn how to prepare and use geospatial tools to inventory, organize, evaluate and display data gathered to better inform stakeholders about current, on-the- ground conditions.

Who Should Enroll in this Course:
This course is designed for individuals who are interested in using GIS to support emergency management mitigation, planning, response, and recovery operations.

Learning Outcomes:
By the end of this two-day course, learners will be able to competently employ these powerful tools in order to provide field-captured data that will help leaders and first responders take action in emergency management situations.

  • Describe how GIS is used in emergency management.
  • Assemble feature datasets in local projection from various sources including CAD, field applications, state and local government
  • Generate field app for field preparation and assessment to generate informative maps
  • Describe the workflow of deriving data layers for fire mangement from sUAV including orthomosaics, surface and slope analysis
  • Perform database queries and spatial analysis such as determining which buildings are within fire zones.
  • Perform various cartographic techniques, and create map layouts using industry conventions.
  • Prepare presentations for various stakeholders including storymaps

Skills You Will Gain

  • Harness ArcGIS Pro tools to perform operations frequently performed in emergency management.
  • Build a basemap with relevant data for emergency management
  • Build field applications relevant to applications in emergency management
  • Construct feature datasets including using local projections
  • Generate layer and map packages for sharing
  • Create map books using advanced mapping techniques
  • Generate cartographic deliverables including web mapping
Academic Units
Section Number
Instruction Method
Online class

Section Notes

This is an online, remote learning course, which consists of content and curriculum that is taught with pre-recorded and real time lectures, in addition to real-time lecture/Q&A sessions with the instructors. Pre-recorded lectures and live sessions are accessed via our Canvas learning system and Zoom. 

This course is open March 6 - March 10, with live sessions on March 7, 2:00-4:00 PM PT and March 9, 2:00-4:00 PM PT.

Attendance of live sessions is mandatory to receive credit for this course.

Please enroll before February 19, 2023 in order for students to secure their UC Davis computing accounts and access to CPE's virtual workspaces. Please let us know if you have any questions.  

Enrollment Policies

Drop requests (withdraw with a refund) will be approved, less a $30 processing fee, if the request is received seven calendar days before the course begins. Click here to view complete enrollment policy information including details on withdrawals and transfers.


It is strongly recommended that students have prior training in ESRI (ArcGIS) or similar software. Completion of Introduction to Geographic Information Systems is sufficient for success in this course.



Members can receive 10% discount on the course fee by entering the Coupon Code.  If you don’t have your association discount code, contact UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education Student Services at (800) 752-0881.


Members can receive 10% discount on the course fee by entering the Coupon Code.  If you don’t have your association discount code, contact UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education Student Services at (800) 752-0881.

Info Session Discount

Attendees of UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education Information Sessions may be eligible for $100 discount on a class by entering the Coupon Code provided at the Information Session.  Contact UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education Student Services office, at (800) 752-0881, if you have questions about this discount.