• Offered by Fenner School of Environment and Society
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Environmental Science
  • Areas of interest Geography, Resource Management and Environmental Science, Social Research
  • Work Integrated Learning Other

Geographic Information Systems have advanced rapidly in recent decades and now play an important role in environment and society issues including land and water management, forestry, climate science, biodiversity conservation, urban and rural planning, and social research. Spatial data are becoming increasingly accessible and are being utilised by a wide range of government and research agencies, consulting firms and other private businesses. This course focuses on social and urban applications of GIS. The first part of the course covers key concepts and skills including models of geographic accessibility, network analysis, geocoding and socio-demographic disadvantage. During the second part of the course students are provided with a range of research topics and spatial datasets to independently investigate and write a research paper.

This course is co-taught with undergraduate students but assessed separately.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Critically appraise spatial environment and society research and applications;
  2. Critically synthesise and apply that knowledge to formulate innovative applications relevant to their professional experience;
  3. Pursue investigation of a topic involving remote sensing and/or GIS with limited guidance;
  4. Debate and communicate the results of that investigation in seminar and written formats;

Work Integrated Learning


Knowledge and skills developed in this course are highly sought in the industry. All projects are based on real-world, drawing on existing government datasets, analysed to industry best practice standards and presented in formats expected by employers.

Other Information

A limit will apply on admission into this course. Students will be given permision to enrol on a first come-first serve basis and should request permission to add the course via the following website.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Social Atlas Assignment (20) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Research paper (3000 words) (50) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Examination (30) [LO 1,2,4]

The ANU uses 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. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the semester including:

  • Lecture content presenting core theory will be accessible via self paced recordings.
  • Face-to-face activities will be a mixture of GIS software application, discussions linking theory and project work. Application of theory and practical software skill development will occur each week, face-to-face in the computer laboratories. This component may consist of 22 hours.
  • Approximately 108 hours of independent student research, listening to pre-recorded material, reading and writing.

Students are expected to actively participate and contribute towards discussions.

Inherent Requirements

No specific inherent requirements have been identified for this course.

Requisite and Incompatibility

Incompatible with ENVS3019 and ENVS6319 and ENVS3045

You will need to contact the Fenner School of Environment and Society to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts

Not applicable.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $4980
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $6360
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
8484 21 Jul 2025 28 Jul 2025 31 Aug 2025 24 Oct 2025 In Person N/A

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