KE5025 - Landscape Surveying

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What will I learn on this module?

You will learn the principles and practice of land surveying and will develop your theoretical knowledge, practical and mathematical surveying skills. You will work both individually and as part of a small team to carry out surveys to identified areas of land:

• Linear and levelling measurement surveys
• Angular and distance measurement surveys
• Surveys using high-resolution surveying technologies

You will also learn how to record and check surveying data, and how to produce technical reports of the results. On completion of the module, your improved ability to link theory, practice and application will serve to enhance your future employment prospects. The practical activities will also enable you to develop your ability to work effectively as part of a team, which is very important in relation to future employability.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through a combination of lectures, practical surveys and workshops, IT practical workshops, a fieldtrip (semester 2), and self-directed study. The lectures will cover surveying principles, practices, tools and equipment, together with related mathematics and health and safety that provide a framework for professional practice. A main part of your learning is by attending and participating in practical surveys that will reinforce how to use surveying equipment and how to record results. You will use a range of up-to-date surveying instruments for the surveys including digital and laser measuring equipment.

In addition to timetabled sessions, your independent study will be guided and supported through your engagement with a range of interactive learning resources accessible on-line via the module e-learning portal site, including electronic reading lists.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

During field surveys and practical workshops, you will engage in small group activities during which you will benefit from peer interaction and support. In these sessions, you will also interact closely with teaching staff, who will provide formative support and feedback on activities leading up to the assessment tasks.
You will also be supported by the provision of on-line resources via the module e-learning portal. These resources include lecture and workshop information, interactive reading list with on-line access to a number of key articles. Teaching staff will also respond to individual questions via the module’s discussion board so that everyone taking the module can benefit. Staff teaching on the module have an ‘open door’ approach during normal working hours and are responsive to communication via e-mail to support your learning.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• MLO 1: Conduct linear measurement and levelling surveys, using information provided in case study materials, and produce appropriate field-notes and results.
• MLO 2: Undertake grid and contour surveys, using information provided in case study materials, and produce appropriate field-notes and results.
• MLO 3: Conduct angle and distance measurement survey using information provided in case study materials, and produce appropriate field-notes and results.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• MLO 4: Evaluate survey results and use technical reports to communicate to a range of Geography stakeholders.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• MLO 5: Work effectively individually and as part of a team towards the effective production of a surveying portfolio and demonstrate effective written presentation skills.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by the submission of two technical reports; each report will involve practical field surveying using a range of surveying equipment:

Report 1 - A technical report containing the results of linear and levelling land surveys using automatic levelling and electronic total station equipment; including, changes of level of plots of land (automatic level), angular and linear mapping of land boundaries and significant features (total station), and meticulous booking, recording, checking of survey data and associated calculations (both methods).

The report will be a team submission assessing MLOs 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6 and contributes to 50% of the module assessment.

Report 2 - A technical report containing the results of landscape survey using high-resolution topographic surveying methods (terrestrial laser scanning, unmanned aerial vehicles, digital photogrammetry). The report will be an individual submission assessing MLOs 4, 5 and 6 and contributes to 50% of the module assessment.

Whilst a summative grade for the reports will be provided after final submission, you will receive formative feedback throughout the year as you progress through the data collection and analysis stages, providing an indicator on your progress, whilst providing useful feedback to assist you with subsequent work


KE4000 Introduction to the Physical Environment
KE4005 Exploring Geographical and Environmental Data



Module abstract

This module will introduce you to a range of techniques and technologies for landscape surveying. Learning and teaching will comprise a mixture of lectures, on- and off-campus practical sessions, and IT practical sessions. Much of the module requires you to work in small teams to carry-out surveys to predefined areas of land using digital levels, total stations, terrestrial laser scanners and digital photogrammetry. Emphasis is placed throughout on developing your ability to methodically and accurately measure, record and check survey results to a professional standard. Topics covered will include measurement of distances, angles, heights and the acquisition and analysis of high-resolution topographic data. Formative feedback is provided throughout the module and summative feedback is provided in stages, allowing you time to reinforce and improve your learning. The knowledge and skills developed will improve your technical surveying attributes alongside your inter-personal skills, which will significantly enhance employability.

Course info

UCAS Code F840

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Geography and Environmental Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2020

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