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2020/21 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

GEOG5990M Programming for Geographical Information Analysis: Core Skills

15 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Andy Turner

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2020/21

Pre-requisite qualifications

None, however, this module needs to replace GEOG5540M Introduction to Programming and Customisation as the pre-requisite for GEOG5080M Web-based GIS.

This module is mutually exclusive with

GEOG5991MProgramming for Geographical Information Analysis (WUN): Cor
GEOG5995MProgramming for Social Science: Core Skills

Module replaces

GEOG5540M Introduction to Programming and Customisation

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This module provides foundation level skills in computer programming. It introduces different types of programming and software development practice in general and in a geographical context. It encourages sustainable software development through: the application of software licences; the production of well documented source code; software testing; version control; and the production of user documentation. It is based on the development of software for geographical data processing and visualisation in a series of supported practical exercises.


On completion of this module, students should have:
- A clear understanding of sustainable software development practice.
- Awareness of common issues in computer programming and in developing software.
- Awareness of useful resources for developing software.
- Practiced developing well tested, well documented source code and delivering a package of software.

Learning outcomes
- Foundation level computer programming.
- Practical skills in sustainable software development.

Skills outcomes
- Abstraction and synthesis of information from a variety of sources.
- Solving problems and making reasoned decisions.
- Plan, design, execute and report research.
- Undertake effective analysis work.
- Employ a variety of technical methods for the analysis and presentation of spatial and environmental information.
- Apply numerical and computational skills to data.
- Use information technology effectively.


- Introduction to computer programming
- Variables and scripting
- Flow control and procedures
- Data input
- Data processing
- Data visualisation
- Data output

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours118.00
Total Contact hours32.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Students are expected to engage with virtual learning resources to learn about Python and general programming in their private study time. Students will be given structured practical exercises and will also be expected to work on these independently between formal
practical support sessions. The students
will be supported through this work via the VLE and with online materials, and by formative assessment tasks

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress will be monitored through formative practical tasks in workshops and by email and through normal requests for help during open office hours. In the workshops, the students are to follow a detailed set of detailed instructions with exercises and quizzes to learn how to read, test, document and develop program source code and develop their awareness of good practice. Feedback will be provided before the second assignment deadline in order for students to learn and adapt from this.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Computer ExerciseIndependent project (2,500 words equivalent)80.00
PortfolioPortfolio of practical work (1,500 word equivalent)20.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

If the student fails both components, they are asked to reattempt Assignment 1 and do the following which also applies to those that pass Assignment 1, but fail Assignment 2: reattempt Assignment 2 choosing a different question OR demonstrate their knowledge of key elements of computer programming by addressing a short set of questions designed to test this knowledge. If a student passes Assignment 2, but fails overall, then they have the opportunity to either reattempt Assignment 1, OR demonstrate their knowledge of key elements of computer programming by addressing a short set of questions designed to test this knowledge.

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 05/08/2020 17:04:15


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