Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 1 (Taught over 2 semesters)
This module is normally only available to students registered on a Geography, Human Geo, Physical Geo or Daearyddiaeth single hon, joint hon or Major
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 20 x 1 hr lectures.
Practical 20 x 2 hr practicals


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Coursework  Semester 2: Three Sections: 1) Statistics (20%), 2) Map presentation (20%), 3) 1000 word field report (20%)  60%
Semester Exam 1.5 Hours   Computer Exam  Semester 1: Two Sections: 1) History and methodology of Geography (20%), and, 2) Data aquisition (20%)  40%
Supplementary Assessment Coursework.  The resit involves submitting failed components, reworking original exercises or undertaking equivalent pieces of work, according to the requirements of each section of the module.  60%
Supplementary Exam 1.5 Hours   Computer Exam  40%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, participants should:-

  1. Describe the history and principles of geographical research and the methodologies employed in human and physical geography.
  2. Identify types and sources of geographical data for research in both human and physical geography.
  3. Select appropriate methods for the collection of data from both primary and secondary sources.
  4. Employ statistical measures capable of quantifying sampling errors, and effectively describing and comparing numerical data sets
  5. Effectively produce maps and graphical representations of geographical data, including the use of computer mapping, remote sensing data and GIS.
  6. Integrate skills in data acquisition, analysis and presentation to undertake effective field investigations and report findings in a field report.

Brief description

This module is designed to provide students with a broad introduction to issues and techniques in the acquisition, analysis and presentation of geographical data. The module comprises five sections. The first section discusses the use of data in geographical research and the principles and development of scientific and social science methodologies in Geography. The second section outlines some of the key types and sources of data for both human and physical geography, and the key techniques employed in data collection. These first two sections are assessed through a computer exam at the end of semester 1. The third section trains students in the statistical analysis of quantitative data and is assessed through practical work. The fourth sections focuses on the presentation of geographical data, introducing students to GIS, remote sensing and digital mapping techniques and systems and is also assessed through coursework. Finally, an independent fieldwork project undertaken within a defined geographical area involves the integration of the skills developed over the previous sections of the module and leads to the submission of a fieldwork report.


The module is organized around five sections:

Section 1: An introduction to geographical research - history and methodology (4 weeks, Semester 1).
Section 2: Data acquisition - data types and their sources (archival, questionnaire, digital, monitoring networks) (6 weeks, Semester 1).

Section 3: Statistical analysis - descriptive statistics, quantifying sampling errors, introduction to inferential statistics (4 weeks, Semester 2).
Section 4: Presentation of geographical data - conveying information through maps, web-based (Digimap) mapping, map layering techniques, introduction to Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing/mapping (4 weeks, Semester 2).
Section 5: Independent fieldwork - undertaken in a defined geographical area (3 weeks, Semester 2).

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number The use of statistical analysis, including descriptive statistics, quantifying sampling error and introductory inferential statistics.
Communication By written assessments and graphical information
Improving own Learning and Performance Independent reading and fieldwork
Information Technology Competency in using the internet for sources of information, computer mapping and word processing
Personal Development and Career planning Many of the skills developed through this module are transferable to non-academic contexts and students are made aware of their wider applicability.
Problem solving The ability to convey geographic information by utilizing maps. Statistical treatment of geographic data
Research skills Writing, thinking and the presentation of information
Subject Specific Skills The acquisition, analysis and presentation of geographic data
Team work Team work and group discussion may be involved in some lectures and practical sessions.

Reading List

Recommended Text
Chang, K. (2006) Introduction to GIS. Goodwill Primo search Cloke, P., Cook, I., Crang, P., Goodwin, M., Painter, J. and Philo, C (2004) Practising Human Geography Sage, London Primo search Ebdon, D. (1978) Statistics in Geography: a Practical Approach. Blackwell (Oxford) Primo search Rogers, A. and Viles, H. (2003) The Student's Companion to Geography. Blackwell (Oxford) Primo search Walford, N. (1995) Geographical Data Analysis. Wiley, Chichester Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 4