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| University Libraries
See Updates and FAQs for the latest library services updates. Subject Librarians are available for online appointments, and Virtual Reference has extended hours.

Software for Digital Scholarship

Information about DiSC-supported software for the collection, processing, analysis or display of numeric, text, or geospatial data

ArcGIS is the leading Geospatial analysis software. There are also free and open source GIS tools such as QGIS.

Mason has a site license for ArcGIS, which means it is available in most computer labs on campus. Students may also be able to get a copy (see more information). There is also a web-based version called ArcGIS Online.

See the Geospatial Data & GIS Infoguide (from which the below boxes are duplicated) for more information on finding and preparing geospatial data and other software you can use.

Access to ArcGIS

GMU has a site license for ESRI ArcGIS software, a powerful mapping software that enables analyzing and visualizing geospatial data. Mason owned computers on campus can have ArcGIS desktop software installed. Mason students can get a student copy of ArcGIS on their own computers. See the various ways to access the software below: 

  • ArcMap (ArcGIS) Desktop: A most comprehensive ArcGIS analysis tool. This runs only on Window platform. Users of Macs or other operating systems must install virtual machine software (i.e., Window Parallels on Mac) to install the desktop version on your computer or use the university's Citrix Virtual Computing Lab. Currently, a free one-year student edition (ArcGIS 10.x) is available for Mason students. 

Access the software:

Access the software: 

Access the software:

  • Go to:  and click on "George Mason University", then log in with Mason NetID (with 2 Factor Authorization). Then you can access ArcGIS Online ( with extended functionalities as default since July 2020.  If you don't see the "Analysis' option when you open the Map tab with the Online, please contact Na Liu ( in COS or Wendy Mann ( in the Digital Scholarship Center, University Libraries. See the tutorial for ArcGIS Pro.

Resources for Learning GIS

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) offer a dynamic digital environment (2 to 3 dimension) for visualizing and analyzing data associated with geospatial.  Do you want to learn about GIS & geospatial data?  In addition to scheduled library GIS workshops, we provide one-on-one consultations as well as GIS instructions to support for faculty and departments who want to bring GIS to their classes.  Please contact Joy Suh, Geospatial Resources Librarian if you need help with GIS.

Use the resources below to learn more about GIS.