• Class Number 3519
  • Term Code 3030
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Prof James Raymer
    • Dr Aparna Lal
    • Prof James Raymer
    • Dr Nasser Bagheri
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 24/02/2020
  • Class End Date 05/06/2020
  • Census Date 08/05/2020
  • Last Date to Enrol 02/03/2020
SELT Survey Results

In order to understand societal change, one needs to examine the mix of location-specific contexts that occur across space. This course focuses on local population change and its interrelation with health and wellbeing by exploring the theory, tools and analytical frameworks for dealing with spatial population and health data. Students will investigate strategies for overcoming the additional complexity of working and mapping spatial population and health data using geographic information systems software. The course will cover topics such as demographic and health uses of spatial data, sources of geospatial data, managing and mapping spatial data in geographic information systems, spatial autocorrelation and scale and spatial statistics.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. explain the theoretical and practical considerations required for conducting spatial analysis of population or public health data;
  2. prepare, manipulate, display, and analyse spatial population data;
  3. understand the importance of spatial data for local population and health planning;
  4. build and critically evaluate spatial analysis models; and
  5. conduct an independent research project that includes analysing and mapping spatial data.

Research-Led Teaching

The lecturers' research and experiences are embedded within the course material.

Field Trips


Additional Course Costs


Examination Material or equipment


Required Resources


Most resources for this course are available online.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction and key concepts
2 Seminar: Demographic and health uses of spatial data
3 Sources of geospatial data
4 Managing spatial data in geographic information systems
5 Mapping spatial data in geographic information systems
6 Spatial autocorrelation and scale
7 Introduction to spatial statistics
8 Local population estimation
9 Spatial interaction and migration
10 Public health surveillance
11 Public health applications
12 Research paper presentations and conclusion

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Participation 10 % * * 1,2,3,4,5
Short written assignment 25 % 26/03/2020 09/04/2020 1,2
Research essay 65 % 10/06/2020 20/06/2020 1,2,3,4,5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is worth 10% of the overall grade. This will be evaluated based upon active participation in the weekly seminars. 


There is no examination.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5


Participation is worth 10% of the overall grade. This will be evaluated based upon active participation in the weekly seminars. 

Assessment Task 2

Value: 25 %
Due Date: 26/03/2020
Return of Assessment: 09/04/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2

Short written assignment

This assignment requires a critical evaluation MAUP and the Ecological Fallacy, drawing upon weeks 3,4 and 5:

Weeks 3 and 4: Students download sets of ABS tabular and spatial data and link these. Tasks: setting up a workspace, using ArcCatalog, loading and viewing data in ArcMap, attributes and projecting-on-the-fly, .MXD documents)

Weeks 4 and 5: Students create maps of different types and according to their interests (e.g., SEIFA data, demographic data). Tasks: map elements, basic cartography, class breaks and choropleth data, layouts in ArcMap and exporting maps in different formats and templates.

Assignment: Students evaluate their outputs in relation to the MAUP and the Ecological Fallacy. How are the maps they have constructed subject to these problems? What assumptions and caveats would need to be stated when presenting these maps? Tasks: Adding multiple data frames and additional context to layouts (e.g., BaseMap imagery, roads and property data), draft an MS Word document with key mapping outputs to interpret in relation to lecture material and readings on the MAUP and Ecological Fallacy. 

Assessment Task 3

Value: 65 %
Due Date: 10/06/2020
Return of Assessment: 20/06/2020
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Research essay

The research essay is an opportunity for you to examine in depth a specific issue related to spatial population data analysis. It can be theoretically focussed or empirically based. It can be focused on any type of social science or public health application but must have a clear spatial analysis component. Students should discuss their proposed topic with the course convenor before beginning their research and before the teaching break in April. 

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Individual student feedback and marks on assignments will be posted on the course webpage.  

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Only in very exceptional cases will resubmission of assignments be allowed. 

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Prof James Raymer

Research Interests

migration, demography, spatial analysis

Prof James Raymer

Wednesday 16:00 16:30
Wednesday 16:00 16:30
Dr Aparna Lal

Research Interests

Dr Aparna Lal

Wednesday 16:00 16:30
Prof James Raymer

Research Interests

Prof James Raymer

Wednesday 16:00 16:30
Wednesday 16:00 16:30

Research Interests


Wednesday 16:00 16:30
Dr Nasser Bagheri

Research Interests

Dr Nasser Bagheri

Wednesday 16:00 16:30

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions