UNIGIS at the University of Salzburg and international partner institutions offer courses in the field of GIScience delivered through online distance education. Course design follows the idea of blended learning; courses are designed in flexible form including variable and open forms of study with emphasis on student-centred learning, which allows organisational diversity. Learning strategies include activities such as individual processing of a variety of materials and online tutorials, self-assessed exercises, hands-on assignments, use of various software, collaborative discussions, and projects.
Knowledge and performance assessment is performed at two different levels.
- Self-assessment is enabled through exercises and quizzes included in individual lessons. Quizzes usually provide feedback to a student based on availability of correct answers. Exercises are designed to enforce students’ knowledge and skills (“learning by doing”). These should be completed to allow participants to assess their own progress.
- Instructor assessment is the part of a course that reflects student’s achievements and counts towards the academic qualification. It is conducted through assessing module assignments, project reports, and Masters Thesis. Students are assigned between 4 to 6 individual assignments per module. These assignments vary in nature and include topics such as using a GIS software to solve a task at hand, evaluate different analysis methods, or conduct case studies.
Exams and grading system
Exams in the UNIGIS courses are conducted as instructor assessed written assignments. Physical presence is generally not required. Should you fail any of the assignments, you can repeat them; in this case additional assignments will be sent to you and assessed. A five-tier grading scale is used for exam assessment;
University of Salzburg issues an international UNIGIS MSc graduation certificate, i.e. transcript and diploma supplement. The grading scale in the transcript complies with the ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) scale.