GIS and Maps

Information, materials, data and software for Johns Hopkins GIS and Map users.

Collector for ArcGIS

Collector for ArcGIS is a great tool to get started on field data collection with a mobile phone or tablet computer.  For the experienced desktop GIS user, Collector provides a mechanism for field data gathering and populating GIS attributes tables.  For the individual in the field, Collector offers easy to complete template based forms that require no GIS experience.  Collector is integrated with ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins, the library’s supported web GIS portal for sharing and making available geospatial data.  Data gathered using a mobile device is automatically uploaded to a private section of ArcGIS Online.  For areas that lack mobile connectivity, gathered data can be temporarily stored on the device and then easily uploaded when service is available. 


Getting Started with Collector:

There are two important roles involved in using Collector for ArcGIS.  The first role is that of a Set-up Person, usually an experienced GIS desktop software user.  This person creates the blank map and attribute table that will be used for structured data collecting in the field.   The second role, Data Collector corresponds to any and all individuals assigned to collecting data in the field. 

Role 1:  Set-up Person responsibilities

  • Create in ArcMap the map and blank table that will be used in the field.
  • Publish the map to ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins -- with the privileges you would like Data Collectors to have.  
  • Instruct field data collectors to individually logon to ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins
  • Assign Data Collectors to a private group within ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins and share the map with the group. ESRI Inc. offers a useful set of getting started details and videos at .

GIS library staff can also provide detailed assistance with all of the steps above.  Make an appointment with us by sending e-mail to 

Role 2:  Data Collector responsibilities:

  • Download the ArcGIS Collector App to your cell phone or tablet from
  • Open the Collector App and navigate to the map created for your group.
  • Collect data using the corresponding map table template.  Use the Done and Submit functions to push collected results up to ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins.
  • If you suspect that the data collection site may not have cellular service, before reaching the site open the Collector App, and navigate to the assigned map.  Download the map to your mobile device. You’ll have everything you need for data collection in an offline environment. 
  • Once you return to a cellular connection, tap the sync icon to upload the stored data to ArcGIS online. 

Once the field data is uploaded into a group’s private section of ArcGIS Online for Johns Hopkins, it can be further manipulated by the Set-up person, or by any of field collectors who have been assigned privileges.  The map and tables may also be opened in ArcGIS desktop software (ArcMap).  

For further assistance contact us at