SPA441 Remote Sensing 1: Image Data (8)

This subject provides foundation knowledge and skills in remote sensing science. Topics include the electromagnetic spectrum, spectral response of targets, sensors and platforms, and ground truth data collection. Case study applications are used to demonstrate the utility of remote sensing in the environmental sciences. Image processing software is introduced, and practical skills are developed to use remote sensing imagery to produce a land cover map of an area.


Session 1 (30)
Albury-Wodonga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: SPA441. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Environmental Sciences

Enrolment Restrictions

Postgraduate study only

Subject Relationships

SPA217 Paired Subject

Incompatible Subjects

SPA217, SPA417

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to describe and evaluate a range of remote sensing devices and products
  • be able to explain the capabilities and limitations of remote sensing
  • be able to describe principles of electromagnetic radiation and its interaction with the earth, the atmosphere and remote sensing devices
  • be able to describe digital remote sensing data in terms of its spatial, radiometric, spectral and temporal characteristics
  • be able to use specialised software to display, enhance and interpret remote sensing data
  • be able to apply image analysis techniques to solve a remote sensing problem


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Electromagnetic radiation and its interactions with the atmosphere and Earth's surface
  • Radiometers and spectral response data
  • Characteristics of remote sensing image data: spatial, spectral, radiometric and temporal
  • Remote sensing systems: sensors and platforms
  • Use of image processing software to display and perform basic manipulations of remote sensing imagery
  • Applications of remote sensing in the environmental sciences

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of SPA441 in Session 1 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Online test 1
Remote sensing imagery
Online test 2
Unsupervised image classification
Online test 3

Special Resources

Image processing software (ENVI) is used in this subject. Software is supplied.

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.