Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Remote Sensing for Human Ecology and Archaeology ARCH4069

  • Academic Session: 2022-23
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

Airborne and satellite remote sensing is essential to investigating the human dimensions of global change, and understanding interactions between human activities and the environment in the past and the present. Students will complete individual exercises and group projects in order to learn to process, analyse and interpret airborne and satellite remote sensing data in the context of human ecology and archaeology research.


This is a blended course, with self-paced online and in-classroom components. The course includes 9 practical modules that run online and 4x4hr workshops that will run during the semester as scheduled in MyCampus. The practical modules and their associated readings are intended to take approximately 5 hours to complete. In addition, students will be expected to meet with the instructor twice during the semester to discuss their project. This is one of the Honours options in Archaeology and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Available to all students fulfilling requirements for Honours entry into Archaeology, and by arrangement to visiting students or students of other Honours programmes who qualify under the University's 25% regulation.

Excluded Courses

PGT Remote Sensing for Human Ecology and Archaeology




Essay (1,500 words) - 35%

Set Exercise (1-2 hours per set of recorded lectures plus 1-3 hours on exercises and readings, completed at student's own pace online) - 30%

Project (1,000 words + data analysis files and website link) - 35%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course will provide the opportunity to:

■ Gain practical, hands-on experience working with data and software

■ Apply practical skills to respond to domain specific questions

■ Participate in the informed discussion of the intersection of the practice of remote sensing analysis and key theoretical frameworks in interdisciplinary landscape studies

■ Develop transferable skills in digital data analysis, digital data management, and web communication

■ Develop the ability to plan and undertake increasingly independent work

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ Identify & Apply the set of techniques needed to solve a given problem in applied remote sensing

■ Critically assess data quality and evaluate project requirements

■ Analyse digital topographic and spectral data to answer questions in human ecology and archaeology

■ Create effective data visualizations to present the results of analysis and interpretation

■ Employ transferable skills in digital data management and web communication

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.