UCL Department of Geography
GEOGG065 Environmental GIS
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GEOGG065 Environmental GIS

(15 credits)

Term 2 (2012)

Helene Burningham

This module aims to provide an applied introduction to the use of GIS in the environmental sciences. The module will cover the underlying concepts of spatial data and its analysis and will offer extensive hands-on experience of GIS as applied to practical problems and research questions in the environmental sciences. The module will also introduce students to a wide range of published GIS applications.

The Environmental GIS module commences with an introduction to the concept of GIS and explores the range of software options available to undertake GIS. The course provides a foundation in cartography, coordinate systems and data types. The course then progresses through a range of data integration, data management and analytical procedures to provide a hands-on experience of the application of GIS to real environmental problems. The last few sessions focus on some specific case studies, in theory and in practice.

The main sessions cover:
·    Principles of cartography; Coordinate systems and projections
·    Types and sources of spatial data; Raster and vector data
·    GIS software and capabilities
·    Integration and organisation of spatial data in a GIS
·    Georeferencing and image analyses
·    Spatial analyses in GIS
·    3D visualisation and data presentation

Written report based upon the practical application of GIS to an environmental research or management question (max 2000 words; worth 8% of total assessment).

The course is based upon lectures, and on supervised and self-paced practical work.

Learning outcomes:
At the end of the course students should:

·    have a detailed knowledge of the principles of GIS, and the sources and acquisition of spatial data
·    have an improved understanding of coordinate systems and projections in the context of spatial data, mapping and GIS analyses
·    have a working knowledge of how spatial data can be integrated and analysed within a GIS
·    be able to clearly present spatial data and produce appropriate maps