This course focuses on the process of designing and building a web application for geodata visualization and dissemination from a spatial problem-solving perspective using open-source GIS tools.
At the start of the course, you will be presented with a web application that has been developed in response to a particular geospatial challenge. Throughout the course, you will learn the theoretical concepts and practical skills that are necessary to be able to recreate this application by yourself!
From scratch, step-by-step, you will rebuild the app while learning core notions and state of the art techniques for spatial data management, analysis, and visualization, basic programming skills for geo-problem solving, as well as hands-on training for setting-up of a geodatabase and embedding geo-products in web-based services using open-source GIS tools.
The course revolves around a didactic case study on food security in Burundi, East Africa. You will learn how to build a geospatial web application that serves to better understand producers’ accessibility to food markets in that country. At the end of the course, you will reflect on possible ways to adapt the tool to tackle a real local problem in your country.
This course builds on the foundations of GIS and Geovisualization knowledge acquired in the short course: Introduction to GeoInformatics and prepares the participant to think innovative in solving GIS related problems.
This course aims at staff from governmental organizations and private companies who are specialized in the field of geographic information and web map-oriented production using GIS. An important goal of this course is to train participants to solve spatial problems independently, preparing them to take on supervisory tasks in the domain of GIS and geo-visualization. Furthermore, the course provides excellent opportunities for participants to broaden, deepen and update their knowledge, techniques and perspectives within the geo-visualization production environment.
The course is structured in 5 thematic learning units that are taught simultaneously in 4 sequential modules of 3 weeks each. Learning outcomes are defined per unit and evaluated progressively at the end of each module.
Learning unit 1 – Introduction
This is a short unit that aims to introduce you to the faculty and the course, provide a general context and some basic concepts. You will also explore the prototype of the web application that you will reproduce during the course.
Learning unit 2 – Spatial databases
In this unit, you will learn the fundamental concepts on how to design and create a relational database, how to retrieve information from it and how to integrate it to a web application.
Learning unit 3 – Spatial analysis
In this unit, you will have the chance to explore different spatial analysis techniques and reflect on the potential of spatial data analysis as a tool to solve geo-spatial problem
Learning unit 4 – Basic programming for web-applications
In this unit, you will discover the potential of computer languages to enlarge 'Desktop' GIS capabilities, both in terms of analysis and web dissemination.
Learning unit 5 - Web-based Geo-operations, -visualization and –dissemination
Upon completion of the course, you will be able to:
- Translate use and user specifications into a basic web-app design
- Build and query a spatial database according to specific requirements and data
- Explain and apply raster- and vector-based spatial analysis operations with a moderate level of complexity
- Select appropriate visualization techniques for data exploration and dissemination
- Explain the basic elements of programming languages and infer its potential in a GIS context
- Build simple programs using python;
- Select proper symbolization to develop a basic graphic interface
- Construct an elementary web page using HTML and CSS
- Explain the process to design a Web mapping application.
- Experiment with geo-Web services / web map applications in a browser;
- Explain how geo-Web services / web map application work on a server;
- Make use of web standards to display and visualize geodata
- Utilize Style Sheets to style dynamic maps
Upon successful completion of this course, you will receive a Certificate which will include the name of the course.
Along with your Certificate you will receive a Course Record providing the name, and if applicable, all the subjects studied as part of the course. It states: the course code, subject, exam date, location and the mark awarded.
Academic level and background
Applicants for this certificate course should have completed their secondary education in a discipline related to the course specialization and have at least three years of relevant practical experience.
The faculty accepts transcripts, degrees and diplomas in the following languages: Dutch, English, German, French and Spanish. It is at the discretion of the faculty to require additional English translations of all documents in other languages as well.
As all courses are given in English, proficiency in the English language is a prerequisite.
If you are a national of one of the countries in this list (PDF), you are exempted from an English language test.
Please note: the requirements when applying for fellowships may vary according to the regulations of the fellowship provider.
English language tests: minimum requirements
Only internationally recognized test results are accepted.
TOEFL Paper-based Test (PBT)
TOEFL Internet-based Test
British Council / IELTS
C2 Proficiency / C1 Advanced
Online English tests during COVID-19 for academic year 2020-2021 and academic year 2021-2022
We acknowledge the difficulties experienced worldwide in taking the compulsory language test, due to the Covid-19 situation. An alternative English test can be:
- the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition test (valid for the September 2020 and February 2021 intake) an online test, available everywhere that TOEFL iBT testing is normally available, with the exception of Mainland China and Iran,
- the TOEFL iBT Home Edition test (valid for the September 2020, February 2021, September 2021 and February 2022 intake),
- or the TOEFL ITP Plus for China.
Please note that other online English language tests (i.e. IELTS Indicator test, Cambridge online test, etc.) will not be accepted(!)
If you lack computer experience we strongly advise you to follow basic courses in your home country.