The advancement of mobile computing technology has provided diverse way for education. Combination of mobile devices and GIS tools has become a trend in many geospatial technology applications (i.e., Google Maps application on smartphones). This research aims to develop an iBook prototype (a GIS textbook) for GIS education on Apple iPads and to evaluate the effectiveness of adopting the GIS iBook in classes and fieldwork exercises. We conducted the evaluation tests in two GIS courses (GEOG104 and GEOG381) in Fall 2014 at San Diego State University. There are two main research questions in this study: (1) How to assess and evaluate the effectiveness of location-based learning exercises (from iBook) and fieldwork exercises for first-time GIS students? (2) What were major technical challenges and opportunities to utilize mobile device and mobile technology in GIS education? The procedures of developing and evaluating the prototype of the GIS iBook include creating two new chapters (chapter three: Wander the World through Remote Sensing Data and chapter four: Internet and Mobile GIS), interviewing five educators from high schools and community colleges, and improving the contents of the GIS iBook after the interview. There were 31 students who tested the GIS iBook and did a fieldwork exercise with iPads. The 31 students were required to finish five questionnaires after the exercise to express their user experiences and thoughts about the GIS iBook. Based on the result of questionnaires, most students preferred to take GIS classes with the free GIS iBook and thought fieldwork exercise can help their learning. The students also performed better in knowledge oriented survey after reading the GIS iBook. This research also adopts the SWOT analysis method to evaluate the prototype of the GIS iBook. The result of the SWOT analysis indicates that utilizing mobile device in GIS education does have a great potential value in enhancing student's understanding. The strengths of utilizing mobile device in GIS education include portability, easy update contents and abundant free development resources, while the weaknesses include distracting multimedia widgets, lack of Internet access, and security issues. The opportunities of SWOT analysis include financial plan for iPads and lack of competitors, while the threats include higher price and incompatibility of iBooks on other tablet computers. The major limitations and key challenges are limited survey time, small sample size, and technical difficulties of developing the GIS iBook.