Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (15 ECTS)
This syllabus is ratified by the Education Committee of the Faculty of Science 2012-05-24. The syllabus is valid from 2012-09-01. The course is at the basic level (G1N).
The course is part of the internet based programme ‘GIS and Earth Observation for Environmental modeling and Natural resource management’ (iGEON). The course is compulsory for the double degree: Master of Science in Geographical Information Science and Earth Observation, University of Twente, Faculty ITC, the Netherlands and Master of Science in Geographical Information Science of Lund University, Sweden. The course is also given as a single subject course. The language of instruction is English. The course is fully based on distance learning, with all material distributed over the Internet. It is flexible in the sense that students can study full time (100%), half time (50%), or with a 25% study tempo.
The course is also part of the main field of study in Physical Geography and Ecosystems Science at the Faculty of Science. The course is an elective course on advanced level for a Master’s degree in Geographical Information Science, Faculty of Science, Lund University, Sweden.
The aim of the course is to give basic knowledge of concepts and methods of managing, analysis, and interpretation of geographical data with Geographical Information Systems (GIS) as well as an introduction to Cartography and Geodesy. After having successfully completed the course, the student should have acquired the following knowledge, understanding and skills:
Knowledge and understanding
- describe different conceptual models for spatial phenomena,
- describe different data models for digital spatial data (raster-vector) and have knowledge of how they can be stored in computers,
- describe basic spatial analytical methods,
- generally describe basic cartographical methods,
- explain the meaning of different map projections, geographic reference systems and coordinate systems,
- generally describe the basic structure of relational databases.
Proficiency and skills
After the course the student is expected to be able to:
· organize and manipulate geographical data in computers,
· independently perform basic analyses of geographical raster and vector data by using standard GIS software,
· present in writing the work process and results from collection and analysis of geographical data,
· statistically analyze and interpret spatial data at a basic level
· use simple databases (basic SQL),
· search for and acquire widely accessible geographical data sets
Attitude and ability to appraise
- acquired awareness of the importance of, and confidence for, using geographical information and analysis within natural science and other application areas,
- achieved a critical perspective on geographical data and analysis results.
The course gives a wide-ranging theoretical basis for working with digital geographical data. Understanding of the representation and analysis of spatial elements is emphasized. The course also demonstrates general geographical problem formulation in environmental and societal contexts using practical GIS-applications in both Swedish and international settings, ranging from local to regional scales. Basic cartography (including projections and reference systems), geographical data in digital form (maps, images, tables), basic analysis of geographical data in vector and raster formats, as well as visualization of and presentation of digital map data are included. Students will also learn communication techniques. Special emphasis will be place on cartographic visualization of digital geographic data.
Examination is in the form of a written home exam, and through passed individual exercises. Students who fail the regular exam are offered another opportunity.
Students are graded as follows: High Pass, Pass, Fail. In order to pass the course the student is required to have passed the exam, all compulsory exercises, and to have participated in all compulsory course projects.
The following are required for admission to the course: Basic admission requirements of Lund University.