GEOG208-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023

Remote sensing for geospatial analysis

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 17 July 2023
End Date: Sunday, 12 November 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 30 July 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 1 October 2023


This course provides an introduction to remote sensing data for geospatial analysis. Students will develop skills for the acquisition of data from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and satellites. Practical work focuses on the preparation of data for use in a Geographic information system (GIS), while laboratory exercises will introduce a range of analytic software that can be used to prepare and examine remotely sensed data.

Remote Sensing data from satellite and airborne platforms is among the most important resources to obtain geospatial information in earth, biological, and social sciences. How can we make best use of this data? What are effective ways to access satellite data from data providers, and how can we effectively acquire our own data by using drones? Which kind of data from large to small scale should we acquire and use in various applications?

This lecture programme introduces fundamental characteristics of remote sensing data and techniques to handle data streams for deriving geospatial information. Lectures focus on obtaining data from satellite platforms, accompanied by weekly labs. In addition, hands-on experience is gained in using drones for deriving individual 3D maps.

Learning Outcomes

  • GEOG208 will help you to take advantage of available remote sensing (RS) data streams by developing skills for the acquisition and analysis of RS data and its preparation for use in a Geospatial Information Systems (GIS). The course aims to provide a sound framework for your future use of RS data in a Digital Image Analysis & GIS environment. Laboratory exercises using the Harris ENVI software package, set weekly during the first term, will introduce practical skills for satellite data processing. You will complete a mini-project using the skills learned during the course, published online as using an ArcGIS StoryMap. In the last part of the course, remote sensing data will be acquired during a lab outdoors using the drones of UC Geography. Fieldwork will also introduce you to practical skills in ground reference measurements for optical drone imagery. Upon successful completion of GEOG208, students should:
  • Be aware of a range of remote sensing data from earth orbiting satellites and UAV sensors;
  • Understand the fundamental characteristics of remote sensing data with relevance to GIS users;
  • Have developed skills for remote sensing data analysis and the online publication of results;
  • Be able to use at an elementary level industry standard software package for processing remotely sensed images.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

      Employable, innovative and enterprising

      Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

      Globally aware

      Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


Any 30 points of 100-level Science, Engineering or Commerce



Timetable Note

2 x 1-hour lectures per week
1 x 3-hour lab per week per group

Course Coordinator

Matthew Wilson


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Quiz 1 5%
Lab reports 30%
Quiz 2 5%
Mini-project 25%
Final Exam 35%

Textbooks / Resources

Recommended Reading

Campbell, James B. , Wynne, Randolph H; Introduction to remote sensing ; 5th ed; Guilford Press, 2011.

Carrivick, Jonathan , Smith, Mark, Quincey, Duncan; Structure from motion in the geosciences ; Wiley Blackwell, 2016.

Gao, Jay; Digital analysis of remotely sensed imagery ; McGraw Hill, 2009.

Lillesand, Thomas M. , Kiefer, Ralph W., Chipman, Jonathan W; Remote sensing and image interpretation ; Seventh edition; John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2015.

Richards, J. A; Remote sensing digital image analysis : an introduction ; Fifth edition; Springer, 2013.

• Gao, J. (2009). Digital analysis of remotely sensed imagery.
• Richards, J.A. (2006). Remote sensing digital image analysis: an introduction.
• Campbell, J.B. (2011) Introduction to Remote Sensing (5th edition).
• Lillesand, T.M. & Kiefer, R.W. (2000) Remote sensing and image interpretation, 4th edition


Prerequisites: Any 30 points of 100-level Science, Engineering or Commerce

Restrictions: GEOG313

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $916.00

International fee $4,750.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see School of Earth and Environment .

All GEOG208 Occurrences

  • GEOG208-23S2 (C) Semester Two 2023