Survey Instrumentation & Methods GEOG5023

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course builds on the introduction in Principles of Land Survey covering the design & use of survey instrumentation, advanced computations and survey operations.


Classes will be on 1 day per week in the 2nd 1/2 half of semester 1, normally Tuesdays. Additional practical classes may be organised, depending upon numbers.

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses

Principles and practice of Land Surveying




Examination 60%, Continuous Assessment 40%.

Survey practical work cannot be re-assessed.

Main Assessment In: December

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

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 builds on the introduction in Principles of Land Survey covering the design & use of survey instrumentation, advanced computations and survey operations

■ Total station design, calibration and user testing

■ Design and use of scanning devices and other current instrumentation

■ Planning survey operations, including survey specifications

■ Traverse observation, computation and adjustment

■ Further computational aspects including, least square adjustment, quality control and analysis of errors

■ Survey network adjustment

■ Use of Survey Software packages

■ Reporting on survey operations

■ Products of survey operations

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

On completing this unit students will be able to:

■ describe the range and operation of modern equipment available to the surveyor for collecting spatial data in the field

■ handle, check and take care of delicate field instrumentation

■ explain the procedures to be carried out during survey reconnaissance

■ explain the different requirements for control and detail survey (specification)

■ describe and explain the range of control and detailing techniques available to the surveyor wishing to collect spatial data in the field

■ explain the reasons for choosing a particular survey technique (control or detail)

■ describe the observation, computation and adjustment of a Traverse

■ assess the whole range of computational methods available

■ carry out basic survey computation and adjustment

■ assess the quality of results of the survey

■ use different survey software packages to process survey data.

■ report on survey operations

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

  Attendance at all practical sessions