WISERD is working in partnership with NCRM to deliver training in Wales

This course is running over two mornings (09:30 – 12:30). Participants will learn how to automatically generate a batch of multiple maps from a single map layout template in QGIS, using the QGIS Atlas tool. Anyone who uses QGIS to produce maps is likely to have the need to create a series of maps of the same theme for multiple regions / points of interest. The ‘manual’ way of approaching this is to set-up a different map design template (QGIS Print Layout) for each geographical feature (e.g. region or point) in the database, but this can be a time-consuming and error-prone process, and multiple maps cannot be easily updated if changes to the design are required. The Atlas-based method requires only one map layout per theme, which has major advantages for improving the speed and quality of map production in certain circumstances – is it not always the optimal solution, and the limitations of this approach will be highlighted during the session.


During the course, participants will work on two different case studies to develop their map automation skills using QGIS Atlas:

  • Basic topographic mapping of multiple regions (e.g. parishes, districts)
  • Automation of socio-economic data mapping at local authority level (e.g. Index of Multiple Deprivation)


The course covers:

  • Introduction to QGIS Atlas – how it works, and when to use it
  • Pre-processing data ready for map automation (manipulating attributes, creating new attributes)
  • Organising and symbolising map layers
  • Setting-up an Atlas map template
  • Using expressions to dynamically change map layout graphics and text
  • Tackling issues such as varying map scales
  • Exporting Atlas maps from QGIS


By the end of the course participants will:

  • Have the skills and knowledge to be able to automate the production of maps in QGIS using their own data


Technical Details

The course materials are developed for the current (as of 25/02/21) Long Term Release (LTR) version of QGIS (version 3.16). Participants will need to download and install this software prior to the session. Additionally, Excel (or equivalent spreadsheet software) may be used for manipulating tabular data. Data may need to be downloaded prior to the session – details will be provided to participants in advance.



This course is designed for novice to intermediate level QGIS users who are keen to start exploring some of the more advanced features of the software. The basic requirements are that users are already able to:

  • Create a QGIS project
  • Add data layers
  • Style data layers
  • Run basic geoprocessing tools (e.g. clip)

It would also be advantageous if participants are comfortable with basic data manipulation in Excel (or equivalent).