Video Tutorial 5.2

Nicolas MalloyAuthor: Nicolas R. Malloy

Data Collection and Download

Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this tutorial should be able to:

  • Conduct a data collection project using a GPS receiver
  • Practice downloading data from a GPS receiver using DNRGPS software
  • Demonstrate how to save .gpx files into a single shapefile.
  • Perform a table join in ArcMap
  • Apply classification methods to quantitative data


  1. Download a free app to your phone that allows you to record decibel levels.
  2. Choose ten locations with a variety of ambient noise, from quiet to loud.
  3. Mark a waypoint on your GPS unit at those locations. Be sure to give your waypoint a name that includes a letter. By default, the name will be a number, which can sometimes cause problems later.
  4. Use the free Evernote app or any other method for recording the location and a short description of the noise source, such as mild traffic, construction, or in the forest.
  5. Watch the videos below and follow along to download your waypoints into ArcMap

If you don’t have a phone, no problem. Just choose ten locations and a theme for your data collection. The data must have a numerical value that you can record, such as a count or magnitude. For example, you may choose to count the number of bike racks at each location on campus and record the locations using a GPS receiver. Be as creative as you like.

Part 1: Downloading data using the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources GPS Application (DNRGPS)

Part 2: Joining Attribute Data to a Shapefile using a Table Join