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The University of Southampton

GEOG6061 Core Skills in GIS

Module Overview

This module is intended to provide foundational GIS skills for various Masters-levels programmes (such as the MSc in Applied GIS and Remote Sensing and MSc in Sustainability). It is intended to introduce Geographical Information Systems and Science to those with no prior experience and to consolidate the knowledge of those who have previously taken one or more introductory GIS modules. It provides the foundation for further studies in GIS at more advanced levels. The module is very applied in its nature, with a large component of hands-on practical work which is used to expand and reinforce material taught in lectures.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Discuss various ideas of what a Geographical Information System is and how it works.
  • Examine, manage, manipulate and display data using GIS technology.
  • Use GIS as a tool to perform standard spatial analysis of data.
  • Demonstrate understanding of the practical implications of building up a geodatabase
  • Evaluate conceptual models of spatial data.
  • Justify selection of presentation techniques to achieve clear display of spatial data.
  • Identify and discuss present and future developments in GIS.
  • Evaluate key concepts underpinning Geographical Information Science.
  • Know best practice for examining and managing data quality and uncertainty.
  • Know a range of techniques for interpolation and multi-criteria evaluation
  • Communicate results clearly in visual and written form.
  • Problem solve.
  • Conduct information processing (including IT skills): literature searches
  • Conduct data manipulation (including IT skills): analysis of data (especially spatial data), image analysis.
  • Retrieve, format, input, integrate and organise data from multiple sources in a GIS.


Introduction to the module and to core concepts in GIS Principles of visualising geospatial data Geographic referencing systems Sources of geospatial data Principles of GIS data storage Analytical operations in GIS Open data, open source, big data: trends and issues Methods of interpolation Uncertainty and accuracy assessment Multiple Criteria Evaluation GIS project management Module summary

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

This module is delivered through a series of 1 hour lectures (incorporating class discussion) and linked 2-3 hour practicals. Practicals will be self-paced, with supervision, with materials provided online. Students will be expected to do considerable independent reading to supplement the taught sessions. Help sessions are scheduled to provide assistance for each of the assignments.

Independent Study100
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Software requirements. Students will use ArcGIS and standard office software. ArcGIS is available on-campus or available through iSolutions for installation on students’ own PCs.

All online materials for this module are provided through Blackboard.. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Assignment  (2000 words) 50%
Assignment  (2000 words) 50%


MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework assignment(s) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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