GEOG 121 Project 5:
Census Thematic Mapping

Janet Beekman

Reference Map

State College borough, Pennsylvania

4 miles across

This is the reference map that comes up when I put in my home address. I obtained this map from the American Fact Finder web site at I do not live in downtown State College. In fact, I also don't live in the borough of State College. My house is just outside of the borough in College Township. This has caused many problems with taxes. The borough when we first moved in and from time to time trys to get taxes from us and we have to prove to them that we are not in the borough and pay the taxes to College instead. The map was created using spatial data from TIGER/Line files. This map shows vector data that represents major roads, streets, steams, and bountaries. My street McCormick is on the map but not labeled. If you find Evergreen Road on the map, this is the road at the end of my street. It runs perpendicular to McCormick. The map scale is 1: 36518.7 which is calculated by 4 miles times (63360in.(the number of inches in a mile) divided by 6.94 in.( the size of the map in inches)). The size of the map in inches is determined by noting the number of horizontal pixels in the map image which is 500x375 in this case. So 500 divided by 72 pixels per inch gives 6.94 in.

Thematic Map

The picture above is a thematic map of Centre County, Pennsylvania. I also obtained this image from the American FactFinder website at The spatial data is from the TIGER/Line files and the attribute data is from the Census 2000 data. The map shows housing characteristics in Centry County, PA. In particular, it shows the median of selected monthly owner costs with a mortgage. I wanted to see how I compared to everyone else. I will leave where I fall as a mystery. The data classification scheme used in this map is Census 2000 Summary File 3. This means the data is from a sampling of 1 in 6 households. It is not from a summary file 1 data set which would be 100% data or data that was collected from all households. The map scale is 1:1278155.6. The image is 500x375 pixels. So the size of the map in inches is 500/(72 pixels per inch) which is 6.94 inches. The map scale is then 140 miles * (63360 in.(the number of inches in a mile) / (6.94 in.)).

The following is an additional census map that I made. I downloaded the PA census 2000 data from Module 6 at I then opened it in ESRI ArcMap ArcInfo 9.0. I made a bar graph of the population per age group per county. I reloaded the map a second time and turned on labels for all the municipalities with text labels. This gave me the name of most major cities. I then created an annotation layer and labeled about where each of Penn State's campuses are located. I then removed the second census map layer which gave me the major city names. With this map you can compare the age of the population and the size of the population with respect to each campus. The map scale for this map is 1:1,395874 and was determined by ArcMap. The coordinate system used by the map is GCS_North_America_1983. Click to see a map I made of PA Census Population per County and PSU Campus locations
DiBiase, David (2002) Understanding Geographic Data. Module 6: Census Data. ESRI Virtual Campus Accessed 28 Nov 2004.
United States Bureau of the Census (2004) American FactFinder. Accessed 28 Nov 2004.