Ashton Shortridge

One of those down-home, warm-hearted Hoosiers you hear so much about.
-- Hunter S. Thompson
Ashton meets Brazil
Department of Geography
235 Geography Building
673 Auditorium Road
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI, 48824 USA


ph# (517) 432-3561
fax (517) 432-1671

Research (updated 1/2015)

My general interests are in the realm of geographic information science, spatial analysis, and health geography. The Department's GIScience web page is our interpretation of several exciting areas in this dynamic multidisciplinary subfield. More specifically, I focus on five areas:

In addition I have developed novel approaches to GIScience curriculum and teaching at graduate and undergraduate levels.

Here's some material about what I'm up to that might be helpful:

My CV(pdf)

Teaching (updated 6/2015)

Fall 2015
GEO 820 : GIS & Management: a graduate level course on GIS-based organizations. How does GIS fit into private-sector, not-for-profit, consulting-oriented, utility, and government entities? We talk with professionals from a spectrum of organizations, visit GIS operations, and get a feel for how these function. Reading, writing, and discussion - no computer lab work!

GEO 866 : Spatial Data Analysis: a graduate level spatial statistics course. Point pattern analysis, geostatistics, and spatial regression models are the highlights. This course attracts graduate students from departments across campus because of its combination of theory and application.

Spring 2016
GEO 425 - Advanced Geographic Information Systems : a third semester GIS course. Plenty of fundamental theory, much practice on using GIS to do interesting and professional things, and lots of writing. Check out some web-mapping applications similar to what students do in this course. Or see what interesting projects students have worked on in previous years!

GEO 429 - Geoprocessing : a new undergraduate level spatial programming course. We use Python to do amazing things, from implementing the basics of a vector GIS to programming spatial databases, to developing advanced models. Learn Javascript and web mapping, too. No programming prerequisite - you'll learn as you go.

GEO 821 : GIS Practicum: a graduate level course on GIS project management. We develop formal foundations in the science and art of project management and apply that to real-world problems in which GIS is part of the solution. The course includes a practicum with a client in which project lifecycle stages will be fully implemented.

I Also Occasionally Teach:
GEO 428 : Digital Terrain Analysis : The Department's only thematic GIS course, with the focus naturally on terrain. No textbook, but there's a GPS field component and a bunch of analysis using a several GIS software packages. A very hands-on experience, employing a savory blend of lab and lecture. This is probably my favorite course to teach, as you will emerge with great GIS problem-solving powers.

GEO 874 - Seminar in GIScience : a graduate level GIS seminar. Is there such a thing as Geographic Information Science? What are its essential tenets? How can it be contrasted with Geography, Analytical Cartography, and Computer Science? In partial answer to this question we read and discuss many of the great papers that have helped define this recent and dynamic field. We evaluate where the field is going, and identify research directions for the next few years.

Links (updated 6/2015)

MSU Geography
Geographic Information Science at MSU
Professional GIS Certificate at MSU - all online!
Software Carpentry for leveraging your open-source research computation skillz!
Greater Lansing Linux User Group