Environmental Research Methods: Geospatial Technologies for Environmental Professionals

Course Description: 

Computer technologies become essential tools in interdisciplinary analysis of environmental problems and environmental decision-making. Geospatial Technologies (GTs) are widely used in environmental research and management including (but not limited to) data collection and storage, its analysis and visualization, assessment of management scenarios and presentation of findings. The range of available technologies, application areas and software packages is extremely wide and depends on issues concerned and level of computer literacy. The present course gives a brief introduction to some technologies focusing at Earth observations (satellite imagery), spatial data visualization (mapping), data mining and processing, maps design for different purposes (internet, journal publications, etc). Several software packages and Internet technologies will be reviewed in order to build up students’ interest and ability to apply these tools in both studies and further professional career. Primary attention will be paid to learning practical skills on mapping and data presentation.

The course is organized as a series of computer lab based presentations followed by practicals and individual work on maps development.

Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of the course students should be able to:

  • create simple maps using basic mapping packages (GEPro, qGIS) and online mapping tools;
  • acquire geospatial information from different sources and map it. 

The evaluation (pass/fail) is based upon student’s performance using the following categories:

  • class participation: active student participation in class discussions is expected and encouraged.
  • practical sessions: series of maps should be developed and submitted;
  • contribution towards the final conference: students will have to show their mapping skills