Student Access to Lab Computers


We are pleased to announce that our in-person and virtual Open Lab resources are now available for students that need additional assistance with computer lab assignments in their courses.  In-person open lab hours will be held in room PH1-208, while the virtual Open Lab hours will be offered to students on the Zoom video conferencing platform.  The days and times that both the in-person and virtual open lab hours will be held weekly are shown in the schedules provided below.  All open lab sessions (in-person and virtual) will be staffed by graduate students who have had previous undergraduate coursework in GIS and remote sensing, but can also assist you with computer-related questions for most other subjects.






Please ask your instructor or the GIS Lab Manager for the Zoom links and pass codes to access the virtual Open Lab Zoom room.


As COVID-19 continues to impact our communities, our campus administration is prioritizing the safety of the limited numbers of students, faculty, and staff that are returning to campus.  In an effort to maintain a healthy community in consideration of the large number of COVID-19 cases being reported in Los Angeles County, the Geography Department requires that all students wishing to access our in-person Open Lab resources adhere to the latest update of the CSULB steps for planning your time on campus.  These include the following:

  • Pre-arrival daily health screening (accessed via your CSULB single sign-in page)
  • Requirements for SARS-CoV-2 immunizations
  • Weekly testing as applicable based on your individual vaccination status
  • Use of face coverings for all indoor and certain outdoor situations
  • Physical distancing, where applicable
  • Online training related to illness prevention
  • Sanitizing of all contact surfaces before you leave the room after your Open Lab session (e.g., computer keyboards and mice, individual workspaces, lab printers, door knobs, etc.).  Cleaning supplies are provided in the lab for this purpose.
  • General procedures for prevention of infection
  • Illness reporting and response


Nine of our PC workstations that are physically located in PH1-208 are accessible to all students enrolled in Geography and ES&P courses using a VPN/remote desktop connection.  Each lab machine has all of the geospatial, remote sensing, and statistics software required to complete your class assignments, and each is accessible using a Windows (PC) or a Macintosh home computer or laptop.  This is a great resource for students with Mac computers who need to use the Esri ArcGIS Desktop or ArcGIS Pro GIS software as part of their coursework.

Instructions for accessing our lab computers is provided in the How to Access Student Remote Labs guidance document prepared by IT Services.  Once you have installed the VPN client (GlobalProtect) on your computer, be sure to select the “College of Liberal Arts” remote labs web link to access our department’s computers.  Here are some important notes to keep in mind when using Student Remote Labs:

  • The lab computers are available for remote access every day except between the hours of 11:30pm and 12:30am.  It is important that you log off of the lab computers before 11:30pm as all machines will automatically restart between 11:30pm and midnight for daily maintenance and operating system updates.  Any work that you have in progress WILL BE LOST upon restart unless you have saved it to an external storage location (e.g., your cloud storage location or the network O:\ drive).
  • Note that Student Remote Labs IS NOT the same thing as Student Virtual Lab which you can access from your campus single sign-in page.  Most students (with the possible exception of students enrolled through CPIE) have a “chicklet” on their single sign-in page labeled “Student Remote Labs.”  This is the link you want to use.  Student Virtual Lab (the button with the blue pyramid on it) is a different resource which is not recommended for geospatial coursework.
  • Note that, because you are logged into the computer hardware externally, you will not be able to save your work to your USB drive.  This is where good file management skills come into play.  Please be sure to save all of your work to either 1) your cloud-based storage locations (e.g., your student OneDrive account), or 2) the department network O:\ drive.  You may save your files locally to the lab computer while you are logged on, but be sure to move all of your work to either of these two external storage locations prior to logging off.  The Department is not responsible for any work lost while using Student Remote Labs.