To promote awareness and understanding of spatial patterns and processes through the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and related technologies, including Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and Remote Sensing.


  • Promote Spatial Literacy across the curriculum
  • Remove barriers to accessing spatial technologies
  • Promote open data and collaboration
  • Teach effective communication of spatial data
  • Push beyond traditional boundaries and seek new, innovative applications for GIS
  • Engage and work with communities beyond Smith College to enhance co-curricular opportunities


Who we Support

Please see our expanded People section.


The SAL is currently located at 42°19’3.42″ North, 72°38’22.86″ West (WGS84).
Our conventional address is Sabin-Reed Hall, Room 104
Directions and Parking Map

Brief History

The Spatial Analysis Lab began offering GIS instruction in 1999 with support from the Krusos and the Culpeper Foundations.  Originally located in the attic of Burton Hall, the SAL then moved to the more easily discoverable and hospitable location of Bass Hall, room 105.   Bass 105 proved to small for the growing lab and the SAL moved once again to Bass 103.  The current and final(?) location was acquired during the summer of 2011.

Stop by and explore!

More history is available here.



The SAL is staffed by a full-time GIS Specialist (Director), and a Post-Baccalaureate Spatial Fellow.

Steering Committee

  • Amy Rhodes, Geoscience
  • Bob Newton, Geoscience
  • David Smith, Biology
  • Dana Leibsohn, Art
  • Leslie King, Sociology
  • Jon Caris, Director
  • Tracy Tien, Spatial Fellow

The Spatial Analysis Lab (SAL) steering committee informs and guides the development and advancement of spatial analysis capacities that align and support the educational and curricular priorities of the college.  With at least one representative from each academic division, they advise the SAL Director and staff to enable broad application of spatial technologies to support the college’s diverse scholarship.

updated July 2017

Administrative Blog