Welcome to Lesson 5! In previous lessons, we discussed and designed several types of thematic maps, including proportional symbol, dot, and choropleth maps. Here, we discuss a more specialized type of thematic map - flow maps. In this lesson, we'll integrate our knowledge of visual variables, map symbolization, and levels of measurement into our discussion of these flow maps: maps that show movement between locations.
Before diving into our flow map discussion, however, we introduce another topic integral to cartography: map projection. We explore the different ways in which we define locations on Earth's surface, the process of creating a map projection, and how our choice of projection alters readers' interpretations of our maps. By the end of this lesson, you should understand the different classes and cases of projections, as well as popular map projections and their characteristics. In Lab 5, we use this knowledge to create custom projections for flow map-based advertisements - a twist intended to emphasize the vast variety of clients and audiences for whom cartographers design thematic maps.
In addition to reading all of the required materials here on the course website, before you begin working through this lesson, please read the following required readings:
If you want to dive into the material a bit further, a good place to start with map projections and learning about their influence on map design, check out this article: Hsu, Mei-Ling. "The role of projections in modern map design." Cartographica: The International Journal for Geographic Information and Geovisualization 18, no. 2 (1972): 151-186.
Additional (recommended) readings are clearly noted throughout the lesson and can be pursued as your time and interest allow.
|The required reading is available in the Lesson 5 module.|
If you have questions, please feel free to post them to the Have a question about Lesson 5? Ask here! forum. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help a classmate.