Accuracy, Precision, and Resolution in GIS and Everyday Life

It’s very helpful to know the difference between Accuracy, Precision, and Resolution, not only in GIS but in everyday life and especially in science and engineering. Below are some resources that will help you learn the difference.

This first source is a video by Dr. Colin D. MacLeod, founder of “GIS In Ecology” ( . The intro text is as follows:

When collecting data that will be used in a geographic information system (GIS), it is important that you record it properly. In order to do this, you need to understand the difference between accuracy, precision and resolution. This short video provides a brief and easy to understand introduction to these concepts using target-shooting as an analogy.

The video is on YouTube at and embedded below.


This next source is an excellent explanation of Accuracy, Precision, Resolution and Sensitivity by Measurement Computing Data Acquisition, a data acquisition vendor.


Below is an interesting quick read on a GIS professional’s view of the rapid advance of GIS data quality, including accuracy, precision, and resolution.


Finally, this last source contains an interesting discussion on error, accuracy, and precision, and its importance in GIS.

One thought on “Accuracy, Precision, and Resolution in GIS and Everyday Life

  1. Run

    Disappointing to hear that Esri is not supporting the nuuorems users accessing data from organizations who store their data in LAZ and the nuuorems software vendors who have supported LAZ. As far as I can tell LAZ is the most widely supported and used LiDAR compression format.

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