MSc in Applied Geographical Information Systems

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.


Key learning outcomes:

On successful completion of MSc Applied Geographical Information Systems, students will be able to:

  1. Summarise the characteristics and justify the selection of different GIS methods for monitoring human and natural environments 

  2. Systematically illustrate the principles of information extraction from social/human, environmental and/or remotely sensed data sources

  3. Summarise and interpret the spatial interaction of social/human and environmental factors

  4. Systematically evaluate the benefits and challenges of challenges of using GIS for a variety of social/human and/or environmental applications

  5. Plan, design, implement and evaluate appropriate methodologies to analyse social/human and/or environmental problems using GIS

  6. Formulate social/human and/or environmental information from appropriate sources, such as census and remotely sensed data, and evaluate methods for integrating this into GIS

  7. Design spatial data models, well-formed databases, data acquisition strategies and spatial data analysis strategies in order to implement a GIS research application effectively


The PgD stage includes a core research methods unit and two optional unit choices

Research Methods in the Spatial Sciences - Applied Geographical Information Systems

This unit supports students in their research journey focusing on the identification of Applied Geographical Information Systems research problems and suitable strategies (including advanced spatial analysis methods) to investigate them.


Optional units:

Data Analytics

The aim of this unit is to teach students advanced theories and skills to creatively and critically analyse large, complex geographical datasets. 


Environmental Analysis and Modelling

This unit introduces case study examples of how GIS analysis and environmenteal modelling can be used in environmental applications and seeks to critically evaluate their potential value.


Earth Observation for GIS

This unit provides students with an introduction to the principles of Earth Observation and explores its role in data gathering (including recent sensor developments) and information extraction for GIS applications.


The final MSc stage involves a Research Dissertation

This unit requires students to undertake an independent research project in the field of GI Systems, Science and Technology, and report their findings in an extended dissertation.