GEO 4373: Methods and Techniques in ERMP
Room 13/222 (most class meetings will take place in the field)
Instructors: Johan Liebens, Room 13/206, phone: 474-2746
Kristal will work extensively with you in the field and the GIS lab.
Office hours Kristal: Wednesday , or by appointment.
Open lab hours: To be announced
Textbook: No textbook is required but students may have to copy maps, articles and other materials during the semester.
Reserve: Reading materials may be placed on reserve during the semester.
Course description: This
course focuses on tools, methods and techniques employed in the study of
environmental impact and resource management. Research fundamentals are studied
and applied to environmental topics such as land use, site location studies,
This semester we will map a portion of the gully system at Canoe Creek as well as surrounding features using a differential GPS receiver and a total station surveying instrument. We will produce a digital map for use by the Fish and Wildlife Commission in a project studying restoration of the creek. You will learn how to plan your work, set up the instrument, carry out the fieldwork, and process your data in a GIS.
Fieldwork is an important aspect of this course. Each group will spend at least eight (8) four-hour blocks in the field surveying. You are expected to have a somewhat flexible schedule that allows you to participate in the fieldwork. The schedule for the fieldwork will be determined in class taking into consideration the schedule of the instructor, assistants and all students. If you foresee any problem with this, please talk to the instructors at the beginning of the semester. Your participation in, and preparation for, this fieldwork will to a large degree determine your final grade.
Exams and grading: The final grade will be based on your participation in the course and on two reports. Participation will be worth 20% of your grade, the first report will be worth 35% and the final report, including your map, will be worth 45%.
The grading scale is a straight curve as follows: A ≥ 90%; 90% > B ≥ 80%;
80% > C ≥ 70%; 70% > D ≥ 60%; 60% > F.
Your score for participation will be based on attendance, attitude in the field work and as a team member, and some preliminary evidence of your activities (e.g. data dictionaries, raw data files, etc…). The first report will be due by the middle of the semester (deadline to be determined). The report will summarize your activities and findings for the first part of the semester. It will discuss difficulties, solutions, and advances in the survey. Detailed instructions will be given in class. The second report will be your final map, a discussion of the methods used during the second part of the semester, and your results. Detailed information will be given in class. This second report is due at the end of the semester.
There is no provision for extra credit work. Considering the nature of this course, which will involve teamwork, no extensions on the due dates for the reports will be granted. If you miss a deadline, your grade will be recalculated with different weighing factors provided that you present a signed physician's excuse or, if a deadline is missed due to a family funeral, a dated newspaper obituary. Most other excuses for missing a deadline are not acceptable.
Students are expected to attend all classes. Because most activities for this course will be carried out in small groups, missing even one lecture can keep us from making firm plans and from working as a team. Announcements regarding the course outline and the schedule of the lectures, fieldwork and reports (including changes of these) will be made in class. All organizational/administrative announcements made during the class period are assumed to be known by all students.
Student learning outcomes
Students who successfully complete this course:
1. Will have a general understanding of the theoretical principles of the global positioning system (GPS).
2. Will have a general knowledge of the basics of differential GPS (DGPS).
3. Will have a qualitative understanding of how a total station works.
4. Will have acquired skills to effectively use a DGPS and total station.
5. Will have acquired skills to import DGPS and total station data into a GIS
6. Will be able to apply GIS experiences acquired in other course(s) to process DGPS and total station data.
Special technology utilized by students: An advanced computer technology skills, way above e-mail and word processing tasks, are required. Routine tasks will include internet access, data downloads, use of various file formats, unzipping files and most importantly, organization of database folders and files in Windows XP and in ArcGIS.
Expectations for academic conduct/plagiarism policy
Will be followed as stated at these URL addresses:
Assistance for students with special needs
This policy is found at http://uwf.edu/DSS/dss_pub.pdf on page 3
Week 1: Introduction, GPS theory, total station surveys theory, equipment demonstration.
Week 2: Field visit, equipment demonstration.
Week 3 - 10: Fieldwork
Week 11-16: Data manipulation, GIS editing of field data, map production, final report
**The final reports are due on December 8th at . The last official class will be held on December 2nd, so you should plan on being in the final stages of writing your report by this day. Extensions can not be given; grades are due on December 12th at .