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Masters Degrees (Geographical Information)

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UNIGIS is a Distance Learning Postgraduate Network in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) jointly run by Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Salford. Read more
UNIGIS is a Distance Learning Postgraduate Network in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) jointly run by Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Salford. The UNIGIS network has over 25 years' experience of success in delivering GIS postgraduate courses. Our highly regarded programme is designed to meet the needs of professionals working in the GI industry - or those wishing to enter the sector. UNIGIS aims to provide a deeper and balanced education in GIS.

Although GIS is a relatively new and emerging branch of geography, the UNIGIS network has over 25 years experience of successfully delivering GIS courses at postgraduate level. You study via web-based distance learning.

The application of GIS is growing rapidly in areas such as urban and regional planning, transportation and land use interaction, and retail marketing, which opens up a range of opportunties for graduates of these courses.

Features and benefits of the course

Three separate pathways are offered up to MSc level:
Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
Providing a broadly based postgraduate qualification in the field of GIS permitting some choice in application selection. Develop in-depth knowledge of the issues involved in applying GIS to solving spatial problems with an understanding of the constraints imposed by application area and the interactions between data, methods, people and technology.

Applied Geographical Information Systems (Applied GIS)
Helps develop an in-depth knowledge of GIS based methods for monitoring social/human and natural environments. Establish an effective understanding of the spatial interaction of social/human and environmental factors and develop the capability to extract information from a variety of sources and to analyse and assess within a GIS framework.

Geographical Information Technologies (GI Technologies)
Aids critical understanding of the software engineering practices and standards that underpin database and web application development and the methodologies for implementing those practices in a GIS context. A critical understanding of the issues involved in designing the storage and use of geographical data in databases and web-based applications is forged. Also key is proficiency in the design, implementation and evaluation of small scale database and web-application projects.

Assessment details

All study routes employ web-based delivery and aim to provide the conceptual and technical framework required for an in-depth understanding of GIS. Each route has either core or elective units available and all incorporate a project and dissertation which involves the design and execution of an original study.

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This master's degree focuses on the multi-disciplinary science concerned with the development and application of geographical information science technologies. Read more
This master's degree focuses on the multi-disciplinary science concerned with the development and application of geographical information science technologies. Geographical information technologies are increasingly used in everyday life, such as Google Earth and geosocial networking. Core geographical information science technologies, including geographical information systems (GIS) and remote sensing, have had a long history of application in government and private sector environmental agencies, planning, agriculture, forestry, utilities and transportation.

This course will enable you to develop fundamental skills and in-depth knowledge of key application areas.. Students can choose to undertake an applied study unit, which gives a range of work experience skills and can lead to dissertation opportunities working with key local and national employers.

We offer research-led teaching and a range of extra-curricular activities designed to deepen and enhance your learning experience. These include access to additional training resources, educational visits, career talks and alumni presentations. You will gain experience using commercial and open source software and acquire skills in the development of spatial software for both desktop and online platforms.

We have recently revised and updated our course offerings and during 2017 will host the 25 th Geographical Information Science Research UK (GISRUK) conference; the largest national GIS research conference.

Aims

This course will provide you with the theoretical foundation and practical skills that are relevant for pursuing a career in a geographical information science field.

You will have the opportunity to develop advanced knowledge of and practical experience in:
-GIS and remote sensing theory and practice
-Advanced techniques for GIS analysis and image processing
-Spatial analysis
-Computer modelling and software development
-Internet and GIS Web technologies
-Databases and database technologies
-Scientific communication of analytical results and their interpretation

Teaching and learning

Part-time students complete the full-time programme over 24 months. There are NO evening or weekend course units available on the part-time programme, therefore if you are considering taking a programme on a part-time basis, you should discuss the requirements with the Programme Director first and also seek approval from your employer to have the relevant time off. Timetabling information is normally available from late August from the Programme Administrator and you will have the opportunity to discuss course unit choices during induction week with the Programme Director.

Coursework and assessment

The dissertation, based on an original research project of your own design, accounts for 60 credits. Dissertation topics can focus on aspects of geographical information science and are supported by researchers who specialise in core areas of GIS, remote sensing or modelling. The remaining 120 credits are based on eight 15-credit course units (four in each semester).

Assessment is primarily coursework-based and includes a variety of project work, essays and presentations. This enables you to gain a significant amount of hands-on experience of applying geographical information science skills to real world environmental applications.

The course has five core course units. You select your remaining four course units from a wide range of options offered by Geography, Planning and Environmental Management and the Global Development Institute (GDI), all within the School of Environment, Education and Development. These optional course units enable you to tailor the course to your unique interests.

Career opportunities

You will have the opportunity to learn from staff with advanced and practical understanding of geographical information science. The taught component of the course, together with the experience of carrying out a postgraduate-level dissertation project, provides you with an excellent foundation for PhD research in numerous fields that involve geospatial data analysis, including physical and human geography, planning, development, and the environmental and earth sciences. There is a high demand worldwide for individuals with these skills.

We provide you with the background knowledge and experience needed for employment in many sectors, especially GIS consultancies, environment agencies, marketing, the oil and gas sector, agriculture and forestry, water authorities, health authorities, and retail.

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IN BRIEF. UNIGIS UK combines the teaching and research expertise of staff from two UK universities (Salford and Manchester Metropolitan). Read more

IN BRIEF:

  • UNIGIS UK combines the teaching and research expertise of staff from two UK universities (Salford and Manchester Metropolitan)
  • Professionally relevant content to prepare you for a host of career opportunities
  • Flexible course delivery, online part-time distance learning
  • International students can apply

COURSE SUMMARY

The application of GIS is growing rapidly which opens up a range of opportunities for graduates of this course. As a UNIGIS student you will be joining an extensive community with representatives in over 30 countries, providing you with an excellent platform to generate and share ideas. By selecting from the range of taught modules available in the second year, you will effectively determine which of the three MSc degrees you will ultimately be awarded:

  • Geographical Information Systems
  • Applied Geographical Information Systems
  • Geographical Information Technologies

UNIGIS courses all provide a solid grounding in Geographical Information Systems, Science and Technology, but each has a different focus. Geographical Information Systems provides a broad introduction to the major aspects of contemporary GIS. Applied GIS is focused more on the application of GIS and geographical information in the human and natural environments. Geographical Information Technologies looks at the various technologies that underpin GI solutions.

All UNIGIS programmes are all taught via online, part-time, distance learning, over a period of three years. UNIGIS has a dedicated Virtual Learning Environment through which all course materials are delivered. You will be supplied with specialist GIS software for the practical aspects of the programme you study.

This course is delivered in partnership with Manchester Metropolitan University. Please apply for your place via the UNIGIS UK website.

Please note, University of Salford alumni loyalty discounts do not apply to this course.

COURSE STRUCTURE

The courses are taught in part-time distance learning mode ONLY over a period of three years. During the first two years you will take taught modules with the third year being comprised of an MSc dissertation and project.  The courses start in September each year.

TEACHING

The UNIGIS programmes are all taught via online distance learning.  UNIGIS had a dedicated Virtual Learning Environment through which all course materials are delivered.  You will be supplied with specialist GIS software for the practical aspects of the programme you study.

ASSESSMENT

All the UNIGIS programmes are 100% assessed by coursework.

EMPLOYABILITY

UNIGIS programmes are particularly suited to those who wish to continue their professional development in the field, but many students use the courses as a way to initially get into GIS. Employment prospects are broad and include roles such as: analysts, programmers, cartographers, surveyors, consultants, GIS specialists, information technology/information systems specialists, lecturers, planners and project managers.

LINKS WITH INDUSTRY

Links exist with a wide range of public and private sector companies through the organisations that our students work for.  All modules in the UNIGIS programmes are recognised by the Association for Geographic Information for Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

FURTHER STUDY

The UNIGIS courses are mainly aimed at those in employment, but there are possibilities to undertake research in the area of GIS.



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Today’s societies require more and more geographical information. Think of physical planning, analyzing the spread of epidemic diseases, risk management, navigation systems, location based services, movement analysis, augmented reality, increasing use of maps and volunteered geographical information. Read more

MSc Geographical Information Management and Applications (GIMA)

Today’s societies require more and more geographical information. Think of physical planning, analyzing the spread of epidemic diseases, risk management, navigation systems, location based services, movement analysis, augmented reality, increasing use of maps and volunteered geographical information.

Our GIMA course offers a comprehensive MSc programme, focusing on the management and application of geographical information from a scientific perspective. Two additional aspects contribute to the uniqueness of the GIMA programme: GIMA is a joint venture involving four renowned Dutch universities: Utrecht, Delft, Twente and Wageningen; and GIMA is a blended learning programme, enabling you to do most of your studying from the place at which you study best (home or office). Only the first and the last week of each module are classroom-based.

Programme Summary

The MSc Geographical Information Management and Applications (GIMA) offers a challenging programme in the domain of Geographical Information Sciences (GIS). It will help you to develop your knowledge and skills in the field of geo-information management and geo-information applications. As a future geo-information specialist, you have to address a wide number of fundamental issues in today’s society such as: Why is geographical information needed and how can it be used to solve problems in the broadest variety of application fields (in flood risk management, spatial planning, location-based services, orientation and navigation, location of sales outlets, spatial aspects of crime, dealing with natural hazards and humanitarian disasters)? How can proof-of-concept geo-information and geo-information technology based solutions for societal problems be designed and implemented and how can the quality and usabiliy be evaluated? What are appropriate concepts, methods and techniques for the management of geo-information and geo-information processes, which may involve multidisciplinary teamwork?
The GIMA programme deals with all of these issues and, teaches, among other things, how to apply and manage geo-information in organisations and projects by critically understanding and using state-of-the-art geo-information theories and technology.

Features of the programme

This Master programme is offered by four renowned universities in the Netherlands: Utrecht University, Delft University of Technology, University of Twente and Wageningen University. As a student, you have access to the large pool of experts from all four universities. You can choose between a full-time (two years) or parttime (four years) programme. Exemptions are possible for students who have relevant working experience, making it possible to complete a part-time programme in approximately three years. GIMA is a blended learning programme. It consists of distance learning (85%) with contact weeks at the four universities (15%).

Your future career

Graduates have excellent career prospects. The demand for managers and application specialists in geo-information in the professional market is constantly increasing. Our alumni are employed in both the private and public sector (by companies, consultancies, government organizations and research institutes) as managers, specialists and researchers. APPLICATION AND ADMISSION This programme is registered in CROHO as MSc Geographical Sciences at Utrecht University, code 60732. Application for GIMA proceeds through Utrecht University. The application deadline is 1 June 2015 for the programme that starts in September 2015. All information about application and admission requirements can be found at the GIMA website http://www.msc-gima.nl.

Alumna Gineke Snoeren.
Business consultant at ESRI Nederland. “GIS offers many opportunities and will become more important in future. That is why I decided to enrol in this programme. The course has 2 advantages. First, it does not focus solely on GIS techniques, but also at management. Second, the blended learning system is great because it combines contact teaching with distance learning. You can study in your own time with less contact hours but still contact with teachers and students at set times. Not only Dutch and foreign students take the course, but also people who are already employed in the field of GIS. You learn a lot from each other”.

Related programmes:
MSc Geo-information Science.

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This programme focuses on scientific, technical and computational aspects of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Geographical Information Science (GIScience), with particular reference to the socioeconomic and environmental sciences. Read more

This programme focuses on scientific, technical and computational aspects of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Geographical Information Science (GIScience), with particular reference to the socioeconomic and environmental sciences. It provides highly qualified and motivated students sought by employers in the sector.

Core modules introduce GIS, a rapidly evolving area in business, health and planning settings, as well as in environmental applications. You will be introduced to GIS packages and database systems, useful for those wanting to undertake social and environmental science research and those wanting to understand the application of geotechnology as practitioners. You’ll study theories and concepts underpinning GIS and explore topics including spatial data models, data capture, spatial analysis and statistical and mathematical modelling. Optional modules allow you to focus on quantitative human geography, environmental applications and programming GIS.

Other Study Options

This programme is available part time, allowing you to combine study with other commitments. You can work to fund your studies, or gain a new qualification without giving up an existing job. We aim to be flexible in helping you to put together a part-time course structure that meets your academic goals while recognising the constraints on your study time.

The programme manager is Dr Paul Norman.

You can also study this subject at Postgraduate Diploma level.

Course content

The programme comprises two semesters of taught modules followed by a dissertation project. The first semester includes three core modules. In the second semester, all modules are optional to allow you to specialise in your chosen pathway. We group our modules thematically so that you can include topics within streams relating to Planning and Society, to Environment and to Technical Development. Optional modules include a highly recommended module in Programming for Geographical Information Analysis.

The dissertation is carried out over the summer months and is an opportunity for you to investigate a topic and demonstrate your ability to apply the techniques you have learned during the course and bring in additional methods, whilst placing the work within appropriate literature contexts. Our aim is to submit the best dissertations for journal publication.

If you study this programme part time you will study fewer modules in each year.

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Principles of GIS 15 credits
  • Dissertation (GIScience) 60 credits
  • Professional Development 15 credits
  • Using GIS 15 credits
  • Quantitative and Spatial Methods 15 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Geographical Information Systems MSc Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Geographical Information Systems MSc Part Time in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

Teaching will be through workshops, seminars, presentations, practicals and lectures, depending on the modules you choose.

Assessment

Assessment is through coursework with no exams. There is a mix of essays and reports, the latter usually based on analysis of real world datasets. Most modules have an assessment part way through the semester and then a further assessment at the end.

Career opportunities

Typical roles undertaken by our recent graduates are:

  • Assistant Analyst
  • Business Analyst
  • Data Analyst
  • Data Quality and GIS officer
  • GIS Analyst and Surveying Engineer
  • GIS Project Manager
  • Market Analyst
  • PhD study
  • Researcher
  • Technical Consultant.

Some of the organisations our graduates work for are:

  • Analysis LLP
  • Asda
  • Atkins
  • Callcredit
  • Experian
  • Integrated Skills
  • Intelligent Space Partnership
  • JBA Consulting
  • Makedoniki ETM, Greece
  • MapInfo Ltd
  • The Environment Agency.

Careers support

The School of Geography has a very strong commitment to enhancing student employability. Read more about our employability support.

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.



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This programme offers expert understanding of the latest developments in geographical information science (GIS), mixing practical training, theoretical knowledge and an ability to apply learned skills in any software environment. Read more

This programme offers expert understanding of the latest developments in geographical information science (GIS), mixing practical training, theoretical knowledge and an ability to apply learned skills in any software environment.

This programme can be tailored to your interests and career goals, offering hands-on experience in geographical problem solving. A field trip to Perthshire focuses on techniques for capturing geospatial information.

Applicants who applied after 12 December 2016 receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, may be required to pay a tuition fee deposit. Please see the fees and costs section for more information.

Programme structure

Courses reflecting the industry’s needs prepare you for employment.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • Research Practice and Project Planning
  • Spatial Modelling and Analysis
  • Technological Infrastructures for GIS
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:

  • Active Remote Sensing: Radar and Lidar
  • Atmospheric Quality and Global Change
  • Business Geographics
  • Data Integration and Exchange
  • Data Mining and Exploration
  • Ecosystem Services 1: Ecosystem Dynamics and Functions
  • Ecosystem Services 2: Ecosystem Values and Management
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Forests and Environment
  • ICT for Development
  • Introduction to Environmental Modelling
  • Introduction to Three Dimensional Climate Modelling
  • Land Use/Environmental Interactions
  • Marine Systems and Policies
  • Object Orientated Software Engineering: Spatial Algorithms
  • Passive Earth Observation: New Platforms, Sensors, and Analytical Methods
  • Participation in Policy and Planning
  • Principles and Practice of Remote Sensing
  • Principles of Geographical Information Science
  • Technologies for Sustainable Energy
  • Water Resource Management

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.

Career opportunities

Demand for GIS expertise is growing at an unprecedented rate. The proven ability of our graduates means our internationally recognised programme is held in high regard by employers.

Graduates work worldwide in public and private sector organisations, such as Microsoft, Google, General Electric Aerospace, The World Bank, British Antarctic Survey, The World Conservation Monitoring Centre, Unisys, British Airways, the Forestry Commission, DEFRA and Registers of Scotland.

The programme is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Related programmes

You may also be interested in the following programmes:

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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Given the wider development of Citizen GIS and an increased public awareness and knowledge of the power and value of spatial data, vastly increased amounts of such data from different sources are now available to researchers. Read more

Overview

Given the wider development of Citizen GIS and an increased public awareness and knowledge of the power and value of spatial data, vastly increased amounts of such data from different sources are now available to researchers. However, in order to turn these data into useful information, they must be efficiently managed, processed and analysed before being displayed in a comprehensible format. Geographical Information Systems and the associated field of Remote Sensing greatly aid us in such tasks. The course is equally split between both parts - GIS and Remote Sensing - with four core module introducing the theory and practice of both subject at an introductory and advanced level. Geographical Information Systems or GIS as they are better known, are widely used in a wide variety of subject fields across the physical and social sciences and even in the humanities, with applicability in everything from archaeology and astronomy to geomorphology and globalisation to soil science and social planning. Remote Sensing – the analysis and interpretation of aerial and satellite imagery – has transformed the manner in which we view the Earth. The synoptic view of the Earth that it has given us has greatly improved our understanding of atmospheric and oceanic processes, sustained environmental management and the interaction of humans with the natural world. It is now a standard research tool in many fields such as geology, geography, pollution control, agriculture and climatology. Additional optional modules in Programming, Spatial Databases and Remote Sensing of the Subsurface are also available to students who want to develop the technical side more fully, though the course has a strong applied flavour throughout. In addition, all students complete a work placement in the Summer months which allows them to gain valuable practical experience to test and develop the skills learnt across the course.

Aims of the Course:
- To provide highly qualified, motivated graduates who have been trained in Geographical Information Systems, Remote Sensing and Digital Image Processing and who can apply the information technology skills they obtain.

- To produce marketable graduates who will make significant contributions to GIS and RS application areas including; industry, government, academia, the community and voluntary sector and other public and private bodies.

- To provide an understanding of Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing, the technology involved and its applications for specific investigations.

Course Structure

The course consists of 6 modules, 5 of which are compulsory. Two of these cover the theoretical concepts underpinning GIS and Remote Sensing. Two other modules involve gaining the theoretical and technical skills necessary to become proficient in the management and analysis of spatial data. A fifth module involves an assessed work placement during the summer months. Modules include work placement, theoretical remote sensing, digital image processing and advanced remote sensing, introductory GIS systems and science and GIS in practice with optional programming, spatial databases and geophysics modules.

Career Options

The MSc in GIS and Remote Sensing is first and foremost a course to skill students for work in a wide range of employment areas. These include a wide range of government and semi-state agencies, local authorities and the voluntary sector, especially in areas associated with the environment and planning. In addition, graduates have worked in a wide range of private sector organisations and businesses, where the ability to work with and critically managed big spatial data is increasingly valued. Successful students have also proceeded to PhD level research and gained employment in academia.

How To Apply

Online application only http://www.pac.ie/maynoothuniversity

PAC Code
MHN58
The following information should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide two academic references and a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Find information on Scholarships here https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/study-maynooth/postgraduate-studies/fees-funding-scholarships

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The master program Geographical Information Management and Applications focuses on the management and application of geographical information from a scientific perspective. Read more

GIMA: OFFERING THE BEST OF FOUR DUTCH UNIVERSITIES

The master program Geographical Information Management and Applications focuses on the management and application of geographical information from a scientific perspective.

In Geographical Information Management and Applications (GIMA), students will be introduced to the theoretical, methodological, technological and organisational principles of processing and analyzing digital geo-information, the management and research aspects of geo-information, and the innovative application of geo-information in a wide variety of spatial application fields.

Furthermore, GIMA is a blended learning Master's programme, which means that most of the time students are studying from the place where students think they can study best (e.g. at home, or the local library). Students study full time (2 yrs.) or part time (4 yrs.).

A compulsory internship allows the student to gain practical experience in a (geo-information) working environment. The internship is carried out within geo-information companies, agencies and research institutes in the Netherlands or abroad. The student submits a report about the internship.

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Geographical Information Systems (GIS) is becoming increasingly important, both nationally and internationally, in the wide range of professions where acquisition, management, interpretation and analysis of geographical information is of use. Read more

Geographical Information Systems (GIS) is becoming increasingly important, both nationally and internationally, in the wide range of professions where acquisition, management, interpretation and analysis of geographical information is of use.

You can study a postgraduate certificate, postgraduate diploma or masters depending on the level of GIS knowledge you need. This is one of the first courses to be offered in this area and answers the need for well-trained professionals in this growing area.

GIS crosses many boundaries and offers a wide range of employment opportunities. This course is designed for people wanting employment in GIS as a • researcher • statistician • strategic analyst • GIS technician • planner • environmental modelling within a range of disciplines.

The course develops your capability to use, apply and understand geographical information systems by developing your

  • knowledge of the fundamental principles of GIS
  • ability to critically examine the theory and practices of GIS
  • specialist technical skills as a GIS practitioner
  • ability to undertake a professional career in GIS and multi-disciplinary contexts
  • ability to complete an individual and in-depth research project that involves a critical and evaluative approach to GIS in academic research or professional practice

The course provides a balance of academic and practical content, giving you experience of using GIS in real life applied scenarios. Some students may have more relevant experience than others and the modules take this into account. If your current work involves using GIS regularly you can build on your learning through a work-based learning module. If you have less specialist experience you can work on a consultancy project module which gives you experience of using GIS on a project for a real world client organisation.

The course is structured around four core modules and a selection of optional modules. If you are studying for an MSc, you also complete a research methods module and a dissertation.

We also offer most modules on this course as standalone short courses.

Course structure

Core modules

  • Introduction to GIS
  • Applying GIS
  • GIS and spatial analysis
  • GIS and statistical modelling

Option modules

  • Network analysis and transport modelling
  • GIS and the environment
  • Remote sensing
  • Ecological survey and evaluation
  • Professional project
  • Global perspectives on regeneration
  • Consultancy project
  • Academic and professional portfolio

Assessment

  • reports
  • individual and group presentations
  • electronic conferences
  • work-based portfolios
  • reflective diaries.

There are no formal examinations.

Employability

This course is useful for people who are working in, or wish to work in • environmental and ecology fields • hazard and risk management •strategic analysis • research • transport • logistics • planning departments • housing • emergency services • health authorities.



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Please note this programme will be undergoing some changes for the 2017/18 entry and courses may be subject to change between now and the commencement of the programme in September 2017. Read more

Please note this programme will be undergoing some changes for the 2017/18 entry and courses may be subject to change between now and the commencement of the programme in September 2017.

This programme offers you the chance to develop a detailed understanding of the application of geographical information science (GIS) and related technologies within the field of archaeology.

The programme retains a distinctive Scottish flavour, and students will benefit from the guidance of internationally recognised staff.

The programme combines the pedigree of Edinburgh’s GIS expertise with a long-established reputation in archaeological teaching and research.

You will gain a broad understanding of the use of GIS in archaeological surveying, recording and research and will be equipped with the analytical and communication skills necessary to work in this vibrant area.

Demand for the application of GIS within archaeology is growing at an unprecedented rate, including searching for new archaeological sites, determining the societal context of existing sites and examining the interplay between successive occupations of a site.

The proven ability of our GIS graduates in employment means our programme is held in high regard by a wide range of employers.

Applicants who applied after 12 December 2016 receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, may be required to pay a tuition fee deposit. Please see the fees and costs section for more information.

Programme structure

The programme is organised into two semesters of taught courses, delivered through lectures and seminars, after which you will work towards your individual dissertation.

Compulsory courses typically will be:

  • GIS & Spatial Analysis for Archaeologists
  • Spatial Modelling and Analysis
  • Research Practice & Project Planning
  • Dissertation

Option courses:

In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:

  • Exploring the Past with Data Science
  • Quantitative Methods & Reasoning in Archaeology
  • Technological Infrastructures for GIS
  • Visual Analytics
  • Principles and Practice of Remote Sensing
  • Active Remote Sensing: Radar and LiDAR
  • Passive Earth Observation: new platforms, sensors and analytical methods
  • Business Geographics
  • Space , Place and Time: the archaeology of built environments
  • The Scottish Lowlands: Archaeology and Landscape before the Normans

Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change. Field trip

There is a field trip focusing on techniques for capturing geospatial information. This field trip has historically taken place at the Kindrogan Field Centre, Perthshire.

Career opportunities

The expertise gained on this programme will allow you to continue to study or to pursue a career in surveying, illustration and 3D visualisation, digital archiving, heritage management, terrain modelling, database management, geomatics or consultancy.

Our GIS graduates have gained work in both public and private sector organisations, including Historic Scotland, English Heritage, the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, thinkWhere (formerly Forth Valley GIS) and CFA Archaeology.

Related programmes

You may also be interested in the following programmes:

Student experience

Would you like to know what it’s really like to study at the School of GeoSciences?

Visit our student experience blog where you can find articles, advice, videos and ask current students your questions.



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Spatial data play an increasingly important role in many areas of our lives. environmental protection, forecasting, agriculture, and local and regional planning. Read more
Spatial data play an increasingly important role in many areas of our lives: environmental protection, forecasting, agriculture, and local and regional planning. Understanding Geographical Information Systems and GI science is essential for effective management and analysis of spatial data.

Core
• Introduction to GIS
• Spatial Information Science
• Earth Observation and Remote Sensing
• GIS Research Methods Field Trip
• Dissertation tutorial
• Geographical Visualization
• Programming for Spatial Scientists
• Plus a 60 credit master’s dissertation

We recognise the need for challenging and diverse methods of assessment. Our methods vary from traditional examinations, individual oral presentations, reports, web pages, research proposals, literature reviews and posters. We also include an amount of field-based teaching and computer practical sessions in our courses. As well as being taught subject knowledge, you will also receive training on how to plan, develop and execute a programme of individual research. We feel that the development of group skills is very important and a number of pieces of coursework involve a team of people. Coursework feedback is given
promptly and in considerable detail, enabling you to improve continuously.

• The MSc in Geographical Information Science at the University of Leicester is the longest running MSc in GIS in England and offers comprehensive training in GI Science and Systems.
• The MSc in GIS has been recently been accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
• The course is overseen by an employer panel of representatives from industry, government, research and environmental agencies in order to maintain the relevancy of the course content and direction.

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This course provides training in geographical information systems (GIS) and in particular their application to a variety of environmental settings. Read more
This course provides training in geographical information systems (GIS) and in particular their application to a variety of environmental settings. If you want to develop your skills in this area, this is the course for you.

The programme is ideally suited to GIS analysts, decision-makers and managers since it will provide hands-on experience of how to use a variety of GIS systems (ArcViewTM, ARCGISTM, MapInfoTM) in real-world settings.

Students are also able to select more specialist training relevant to their interests and expertise.

The course aims to enhance your previous understanding and use of geographical information systems but it is also suitable for those who have no previous training in GIS.

By the end of the course, you will have developed high level abilities to apply GIS within environmental management, have an in-depth understanding of the functionality of GIS and be critically aware of the potential and limitations of GIS.

Scholarships

Scholarships are available for this course. Please click the link below for more information.
https://www.brighton.ac.uk/studying-here/fees-and-finance/postgraduate/index.aspx

Syllabus

All students study five core modules. You will also choose option modules, allowing you to specialise in the areas of the course that interest you the most.

Core modules:

Introduction to GIS
Spatial Data Analysis
Applications in GIS
Research Methods
Dissertation

Option modules:

Applied Remote Sensing
Active Remote Sensing
Environmental Impact Assessment
Issues in Ecology and Conservation
Hydrogeology
Case Studies in Environmental Assessment
Systems for Environmental Management
Environmental Assessment in Practice
Water Resource Management
Water Treatment Technology

Employability

Brighton's graduates are highly sought after by employers.

The course will provide opportunities to join a wide range of companies as a GIS expert. Recent graduates are building careers in organisations including:

• GIS consultancies: South Coast GIS and Ambiental
• Environmental consultancies: Groundsure, Argyll Environmental, Hyder Consulting
• East Sussex District Council
• Southern Water
• TNT Courier

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Geographical Information Systems (GIS) has grown rapidly to become a major component of information technology, creating distinctive methods of data analysis, algorithms and software tools. Read more

Why take this course?

Geographical Information Systems (GIS) has grown rapidly to become a major component of information technology, creating distinctive methods of data analysis, algorithms and software tools.

This course emphasises the acquisition of practical GIS skills. We use a wide range of industry-standard software tools and a structured approach to the analysis of spatial data through project work.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

Get hands-on experience of using instruments such as GPS, Total Stations and 3D laser scanners
Be taught by experts, who have extensive industrial and consultancy experience and strong research portfolios
Practise your GIS data collection skills in a range of environments

What opportunities might it lead to?

The wide range of career opportunities across public and private sectors and in university-based research, coupled with the rapid rate of technological change, mean that major organisations and industrial firms are finding it essential to update their skills through advanced study. We therefore aim to meet this demand by tailoring our course to the needs of both regional and national markets.

Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:

Environmental consultancies
Geographical information science specialists
Working for the Environmental Agency
Working for the Ordnance Survey

Module Details

The academic year is divided into two parts. The first part comprises the lecture, workshop, practical and field work elements of the course, followed by a dissertation which will take approximately five months to complete.

Here are the units you will study:

Principles of Geographic Information Science: Beginning with an overview of the development of GIS, the first part of this unit examines data sources and data capture, as well as hardware and software tools. The second part deals with vector-based data structures and data management, followed by vector GIS operations, such as overlay and buffering. You will undertake a project to create a GIS of your own, which may be presented as a seminar session. Practical exercises are undertaken using MapInfo. You will then go on to develop an understanding of raster-based approaches to GIS, cartographic modelling and related areas of image processing which are often applied in remote sensing. Topics include raster data models and data compression techniques, raster GIS and cartographic modelling, imaging systems and image processing, geometric correction techniques and GIS/remote sensing integration in the raster domain. Practical work uses MapInfo, ArcGIS - ArcMap and ERDAS Imagine.

GIS and Database Management Systems: Your major focus on this unit will be the use of industry-standard methods and tools to develop competence in the successive stages of database design, development and implementation. You will have an introduction to data analysis techniques, followed by an examination of alternative types of database system and the rules of relational database design. There is extensive treatment of the SQL query language in standard databases and for attribute query within a GIS. You will be introduced to advanced topics including database programming and computer-aided database design. You will also consider the Object-Relational databases and spatial data types, explore the use of spatial queries using the ORACLE relational database management system and examine procedural database programming and web database connectivity. Practical work for this unit uses the ORACLE relational database management system, running in full client-server mode.

Applied Geographic Information Systems: On this unit you will develop a general, inferential, model-based approach to the analysis of quantitative data within a geographical framework. You will examine a range of underlying concepts including model specification, bias, linearity, robustness and spatial autocorrelation. You will subsequently develop these in the context of a unified framework for analysis. Practical work is based on ArcGIS - ArcMap.

Research Methods and Design: This unit will introduce you to the basic principles of research design and methodology, enabling you to develop a critical approach to the selection and evaluation of appropriate methods for different types of research problem.

Modelling and Analysis and the Web: This unit gives you the chance to consider the use of GIS technology for creating terrain models and explore the basics of photogrammetry, as well as analytical and digital techniques for photogrammetric data capture. You will also look at Orthophotography, LiDAR and RADAR systems. ArcGIS is used for spatial analysis, such as buffering and overlay techniques. You will also explore and exemplify data transfer between GIS software systems and technologies for internet-based GIS.

Dissertation: This provides an opportunity for you to pursue a particular topic to a greater depth than is possible within the taught syllabus. It can take a variety of forms, for example GIS-based analysis of original data sources and digital datasets, case studies of GIS adoption in public or private sector organisations, the development of new software tools/applications or the design of GIS algorithms. The final submission takes the form of an extended written report or dissertation of a maximum of 15,000 words.

Programme Assessment

The course provides a balanced structure of lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops. You will learn through hands-on practical sessions designed to give you the skills in laboratory, computer and field techniques. The course also includes extensive field work designed to provide field mapping and data collection skills.

The majority of assessment takes the form of practical exercises and project-based activity. This enables you to become familiar with industry-standard software systems and develop your skills by applying your newfound expertise in areas that particularly interest you.

Student Destinations

GIS technology is now very widely deployed in many organisations ranging from utility companies, telecommunications networks, civil engineering, retailing, local and national government, international charities and NGOs, the National Health Service, environmental organisations, banking and finance, and insurance. GIS has become an essential part of the world's information infrastructure.

You can expect to go on to find work in organisations such as local authorities, health authorities, conservation organisations, banks and insurance companies, amongst others. Many of our previous graduates are now employed all over the world, working on a whole variety of GIS-related projects in a very wide range of different organisations and industries.

Read less
Jointly run by the University of Salford and Manchester Metropolitan University, UNIGIS is a three year programme, with the first two years comprising taught units, and a final year to complete a dissertation. Read more
Jointly run by the University of Salford and Manchester Metropolitan University, UNIGIS is a three year programme, with the first two years comprising taught units, and a final year to complete a dissertation.

The Geographical Information Systems (GIS) pathway aims to provide students with a broadly based postgraduate qualification in the field of GIS. Importantly, it offers students choice in the selection of their application area (with a range of units available). The pathway helps students to develop an in-depth knowledge of the issues involved in applying GIS to solving spatial problems with an understanding of the constraints imposed by the application area(s) and the interactions between data, methods, people, and technology.

The first year of study (equivalent to PgC in GIS) involves three core units:

Foundations of GIS -
This unit provides an introduction to Geographical Information Systems (GIS) from conceptual, theoretical, and practical perspectives. Students will learn about the different methods used in geographic encoding and spatial data modelling before employing such datasets in a software environment. The unit concludes with a review of contemporary issues in GIS. Key elements of the curriculum include: Origins of GIS; Representation, Modelling and Geovisualisation; Software Skills; GIS: Today and Tomorrow.

Spatial Data Infrastructures -
Spatial data is key to any GIS project. This unit investigates how spatial data is sourced and also aims to provide students with the requisite knowledge and practical skills to identify and evaluate, against recognised national and international quality standards, spatial data for use in GI-based projects. Key elements of the curriculum include: Spatial Data; Data Standards and Infrastructures; Sourcing Spatial Data; Data Quality; Evaluating Fitness for Purpose.

Databases -
GIS are fundamentally information systems which provide specialist facilities for the creation, storage and manipulation of spatial and attribute data. Much of the functionality offered by GIS software is shared with conventional database software. Indeed, most GIS - at their core - have a conventional database management system (DBMS) around which spatial functionality has been wrapped. It is essential that GIS specialists have a thorough understanding of database theory, design and implementation. Key elements of the curriculum include: Why Databases?; Relational Databases; Critiquing Relational Databases; Implementation and Interrogation.

The second year of study (equivalent to the PgD in GIS) involves one core and two elective units:

Methods in GIS (core) -
The concepts, theories and methods behind the application of GIS are examined in detail. The unit explores research design, data analysis and interpretation and presentation. Special focus is given to methods of spatial analysis and their implementation using GIS software. Key elements of the curriculum include: Research Design; Qualitative and Quantitative Techniques; Fundamentals of Spatial Analysis; Recent Advances in Spatial Analysis.

Two elective units are chosen from:

Distributed GIS -
This unit discusses the most vibrant and rapidly developing area of geospatial technology. Desktop GIS packages are increasingly looking like the specialist packages for serious users that, in truth, they always were. Now, for the very large majority of people who really only want to look at the location of things, we can offer WebGIS systems that deliver what they need directly into their web-browsers. This unit explains the concepts and methods of Internet GIS, development and its applications. Key elements of the curriculum include: From Desktop to Distributed GI Services; Technologies in Distributed GIS; Building the GeoWeb; Tutorials.

Environmental Applications of GIS -
GIS and related technologies such as remote sensing have been widely employed in environmental applications for almost forty years. The advent of satellite remote sensing allowed reliable synoptic data to be available to scientists who have developed numerous models. This together with the decision-making tools and spatially-referenced framework of GIS offers significant support to researchers investigating different environmental phenomena. Data from remote sensing, GPS and other sources provide a valuable input into GIS models for environmental monitoring, modelling and prediction. This unit introduces case study examples of how GIS and related technologies can be used in environmental applications and seeks to critically evaluate their potential value. Key elements of the curriculum include: Applicability and benefits of GIS; Practical Problem Solving and Evaluation using techniques such as Terrain Analysis, Multicriteria Evaluation, Landscape Metrics etc.

Remote Sensing for GIS Applications -
This unit provides students with an introduction to the principles of remote sensing and explores its role in data gathering/information extraction for GIS applications. Key elements of the curriculum include: Principles of Remote Sensing; Satellite Systems; Quantitative Data; GIS Integration.

Social Applications of GIS -
Where an investigation into social, economic, political, and cultural characteristics and phenomena is required, GIS provides a powerful tool. For social applications such as crime mapping and healthcare resource management, GIS can be used effectively to help model, monitor and enable (spatial) decision making based on existing criteria. Social systems are often highly organised and complex - GIS allows this complexity to be effectively distilled into an abstraction representing the most causally related behaviour. This unit introduces case tudy examples of how GIS can be used in social applications and seeks to critically evaluate their potential value. Key elements of the curriculum include: Exemplars of GIS use in Social Applications, e.g. health, crime and urban transportation; Evaluation of the Benefits of GIS; Practical Problem Solving techniques.

Spatial Databases and Programming -
The importance of programming and GIS as part of a larger system, which involves spatial databases, software development and programme coding, has been increasingly realised in GIS practice. This unit aims to develop your geospatial skills in building enterprise oriented databases (e.g. geo-database and server) and creating application-oriented GIS models through programming. This unit also helps you to critically evaluate the issues and trends in enterprise GIS and GIS application development from the perspective of software engineering and geospatial technology. Key elements of the curriculum include: Spatial Databases; Design and Quality; Programming; Tutorials.

The final year of study (the MSc stage) requires the student to design and undertake a substantial and unique independent research project, to be presented as an academic dissertation (max. of 15,000 words).

Read less
Jointly run by the University of Salford and Manchester Metropolitan University, UNIGIS is a three year programme, with the first two years comprising taught units, and a final year to complete a dissertation. Read more
Jointly run by the University of Salford and Manchester Metropolitan University, UNIGIS is a three year programme, with the first two years comprising taught units, and a final year to complete a dissertation.

The Applied Geographical Information Systems (Applied GIS) pathway aims to develop students in-depth knowledge of GIS-based methods for monitoring the social/human and natural environments. It will also help develop the student's understanding of the spatial interaction of social/human and environmental factors. Importantly, it seeks to increase the student's capability to extract social/human and/or environmental information from a variety of sources, such as remotely sensed data, and to undertake analysis and assessment using appropriate methods within a GIS framework.

The first year of study (equivalent to PgC in GIS) involves three core units:

Foundations of GIS -
This unit provides an introduction to Geographical Information Systems (GIS) from conceptual, theoretical, and practical perspectives. Students will learn about the different methods used in geographic encoding and spatial data modelling before employing such datasets in a software environment. The unit concludes with a review of contemporary issues in GIS. Key elements of the curriculum include: Origins of GIS; Representation, Modelling and Geovisualisation; Software Skills; GIS: Today and Tomorrow.

Spatial Data Infrastructures -
Spatial data is key to any GIS project. This unit investigates how spatial data is sourced and also aims to provide students with the requisite knowledge and practical skills to identify and evaluate, against recognised national and international quality standards, spatial data for use in GI-based projects. Key elements of the curriculum include: Spatial Data; Data Standards and Infrastructures; Sourcing Spatial Data; Data Quality; Evaluating Fitness for Purpose.

Databases -
GIS are fundamentally information systems which provide specialist facilities for the creation, storage and manipulation of spatial and attribute data. Much of the functionality offered by GIS software is shared with conventional database software. Indeed, most GIS - at their core - have a conventional database management system (DBMS) around which spatial functionality has been wrapped. It is essential that GIS specialists have a thorough understanding of database theory, design and implementation. Key elements of the curriculum include: Why Databases?; Relational Databases; Critiquing Relational Databases; Implementation and Interrogation.

The second year of study (equivalent to the PgD in GIS) involves one core and two elective units:

Methods in GIS (core) -
The concepts, theories and methods behind the application of GIS are examined in detail. The unit explores research design, data analysis and interpretation and presentation. Special focus is given to methods of spatial analysis and their implementation using GIS software. Key elements of the curriculum include: Research Design; Qualitative and Quantitative Techniques; Fundamentals of Spatial Analysis; Recent Advances in Spatial Analysis.

Two elective units are chosen from:

Environmental Applications of GIS -
GIS and related technologies such as remote sensing have been widely employed in environmental applications for almost forty years. The advent of satellite remote sensing allowed reliable synoptic data to be available to scientists who have developed numerous models. This together with the decision-making tools and spatially-referenced framework of GIS offers significant support to researchers investigating different environmental phenomena. Data from remote sensing, GPS and other sources provide a valuable input into GIS models for environmental monitoring, modelling and prediction. This unit introduces case study examples of how GIS and related technologies can be used in environmental applications and seeks to critically evaluate their potential value. Key elements of the curriculum include: Applicability and benefits of GIS; Practical Problem Solving and Evaluation using techniques such as Terrain Analysis, Multicriteria Evaluation, Landscape Metrics etc.

Remote Sensing for GIS Applications -
This unit provides students with an introduction to the principles of remote sensing and explores its role in data gathering/information extraction for GIS applications. Key elements of the curriculum include: Principles of Remote Sensing; Satellite Systems; Quantitative Data; GIS Integration.

Social Applications of GIS -
Where an investigation into social, economic, political, and cultural characteristics and phenomena is required, GIS provides a powerful tool. For social applications such as crime mapping and healthcare resource management, GIS can be used effectively to help model, monitor and enable (spatial) decision making based on existing criteria. Social systems are often highly organised and complex - GIS allows this complexity to be effectively distilled into an abstraction representing the most causally related behaviour. This unit introduces case tudy examples of how GIS can be used in social applications and seeks to critically evaluate their potential value. Key elements of the curriculum include: Exemplars of GIS use in Social Applications, e.g. health, crime and urban transportation; Evaluation of the Benefits of GIS; Practical Problem Solving techniques.

The final year of study (the MSc stage) requires the student to design and undertake a substantial and unique independent research project, to be presented as an academic dissertation (max. of 15,000 words).

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