GEO4520 – Advanced remote sensing and topographic analysis

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course will introduce advanced methods of remote sensing and topographic analysis for geosciences, with special emphasis to current research at our research group.

Learning outcome

During the course you will:

  • be able to use optical digital images to generate a digital elevation model
  • understand how to detect changes on digtial images and how to calculate surface velocities based on them
  • can use satellite imagery to derive important land surface paramters such as temperatures or snow cover
  • can use satellite imagery to derive important land surface paramters such as surface temperature, snow cover, soil moisture or vegetation parameters
  • get insight into the analysis of digital elevation models, topographic classification methods and their application in science

The topics may be given different weight depending on the background of the students, and the present research focus in the research group.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Recommended previous knowledge

Good basics in informatics/programming, mathematics, physics and geosciences.

Overlapping courses


Lectures, lab/computer training, project work, e-learning, and student presentations.

Attendance at the first lecture is compulsory. Students who fail to meet, are considered to have withdrawn from the course unless they have previously given notice to the Student administration (

We reserve the right to change the teaching form and examination of the course in semesters where 5 or fewer students have been admitted.


2 scientific essays on pensum literature (pass/no pass). 2 project presentations (pass/no pass). 1 project report (total c. 50%). Final exam (c. 50%). The form of final exam depends on the number of students. If there are less than ca 10 students, the final exam will be oral. If there are more than ca 10 students, the final exam will be written. Written exam questions will only be available in English. Both exams needs to be passed separately in order to pass the course.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses:

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every autumn


Every autumn

Teaching language