What is ArcMap?

This section provides an introduction and overview to ArcMap, which is the central application used in ArcGIS. ArcMap is where you display and explore GIS datasets for your study area, where you assign symbols, and where you create map layouts for printing or publication. ArcMap is also the application you use to create and edit datasets.

ArcMap represents geographic information as a collection of layers and other elements in a map. Common map elements include the data frame containing map layers for a given extent plus a scale bar, north arrow, title, descriptive text, a symbol legend, and so on.

Typical tasks performed in ArcMap

ArcMap is the primary application used in ArcGIS and is used to perform a wide range of common GIS tasks as well as specialized, user-specific tasks. Here is a list of some common workflows you can perform:

Getting started with ArcMap

To begin learning and using ArcMap, start with A quick tour of ArcMap.

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