Module 3

Exercise: Create your first story map!

Congratulations on making it to the final module of this story maps workshop. You should now have the skills to create your first story map. If you already have an idea for a story map that you would like to explore, we encourage you to try that out now.

As you’re thinking through how you want to structure your story map, keep in mind the guiding questions we introduced in Module 1:

  • Who is the intended audience for this map?
  • What are the one to five things I want this map to communicate clearly?
  • Which data will best communicate these things?
  • Which design elements will help the map user receive the message most clearly?

Once you’ve answered those questions, you’re ready to begin! You may find it helpful to first draft your story map. You can use a template like this (since this file is ‘View Only’ we recommend making a copy of this template to add your content).

If you don’t have an idea for a story map yet, but want to try out your skills, we encourage you to try building a story map using our example text and media. You can find that here.

Once you’ve completed that exercise, if your story map looks something like this, congratulations! Next time, you’ll be ready to build your own.

Workshop wrap up and follow up

Thank you for taking part in this workshop. As we mentioned at the beginning, if you have questions related to this workshop or GIS/Story Maps in general, we encourage you to reach out to us at or Schedule a Consultation with us.

We encourage you to check out our other open scholarship, digital scholarship, and geospatial/map offerings and services at the UW Libraries:

Open Scholarship Commons

Maps & Cartographic Information

Geospatial Data Resources