Course Title: Geospatial Physics and Statistics

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Geospatial Physics and Statistics

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 2 2006,
Sem 2 2007,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019

Course Coordinator: Assoc. Prof. Tamar Greaves

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 9556

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 14.6.12

Course Coordinator Availability: Email for appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

This course assumes no previous background in Physics or Statistics, but a passing grade in first year mathematics (MATH2211 or MATH2163 or equivalent) is required to adequately engage with the physics material presented in this course.

Course Description

This course is a second-year core component of the BH116 Bachelor of Applied Science (Surveying) (Honours) and BH117 Bachelor of Science (Geospatial Science) (Honours) programs. It establishes knowledge of the basic concepts in statistics and the physical world and provides a conceptual grounding for later courses in the BH116 & BH117 programs.

It provides an introduction to some of the key concepts in physics and statistics relevant to the Geospatial discipline. The Physics section covers two important components: 1) Satellite Physics (including Units, Motion, Force, Work & Energy and Gravity); and 2) EM Waves (including Optics, Interference & Diffraction). The Statistics section provides a broad introductory knowledge of statistical methods in data analysis, with a emphasis on techniques that are useful in Geospatial science.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH116 Bachelor of Applied Science (Surveying)(Honours) and BH117 Bachelor of Applied Science (Geospatial Science)(Honours)

1.1 Describe the fundamental and applied scientific knowledge that underpins surveying and the geospatial sciences.

1.2 Demonstrate in-depth understanding of the spatial models and mathematical methods used in contemporary practice

1.3 Understand specialist bodies of knowledge in surveying and geospatial science

2.1 Apply standard and advanced techniques to solve a range of measurement and data management problems.

3.1 Design and implement creative solutions to complex problems.

3.2 Interpret and critically analyse results and make informed judgments on the appropriateness of solutions.

3.3 Apply critical and analytical skills in a scientific and professional manner.

4.1 Communicate effectively by means of oral, written and graphical presentations to peers and a wider audience

After completing this course you will:

  1. Have a basic level of knowledge in the areas of force, motion, energy and satellite physics.
  2. Have a basic level of knowledge in the areas of optics, interference and diffraction
  3. Describe the nature of random variables and probability distributions through direct calculation and computer simulation
  4. Perform statistical inference tasks using software (descriptive statics, t-test, hypothesis tests, confidence intervals, linear regression) and be able to state the assumptions necessary for the validity of results.
  5. Be able to analyse and solve problems in the areas listed above

Overview of Learning Activities

Learning will occur through a series of lectures, tutorial discussions, practice class sheets, online tests, and in-class tests.

Total Study Hours

Teacher guided hours: 48

Learner directed hours: 48


Overview of Learning Resources

Many good references are available in the Library on the topics covered at this level. Particulars will be given out at the start of the course. You will be able to access lecture notes, course information and assorted learning materials through myRMIT.

Overview of Assessment

Note that:

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment will be through

  1. online tests 24% (Addresses CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  2. statistics lab assessments 15% (Addresses CLOs 3, 4, 5)
  3. physics class tests 26% (Addresses CLOs 1, 2, 5)
  4. statistics class tests 35% (Addresses CLOs 3, 4, 5)