Topography and Geographic Information Systems


Ensure learning of the main concepts and applications of the Topography and the Geographic Information Systems to Civil Engineering, namely:

-Reading and comprehension of earth surface representations (paper sheets and digital);

-Measured variables and surveying methods, techniques and equipments to the surveying, positioning and monitoring.

-Surveying accuracy and the methods to eliminate and correct/compensate errors.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Rui Alexandre Lopes Baltazar Micaelo


Weekly - 3

Total - 44

Teaching language



Available soon


[1] José Gonçalves, Sérgio Madeira, J. Sousa. TOPOGRAFIA – Conceitos e Aplicações, Lidel, 2008. ISBN: 978-972-757-485-8

[2] Casaca, João; Matos, João; Baio, Miguel. Topografia geral, Lidel, 3ª ed. 2000. ISBN: 972-757-135-2

[3] Gaspar, Joaquim Alves. Cartas e projecções cartográficas, Lidel, 2000. ISBN: 972-757-151-4

[4] Instituto Geográfico do Exército. Manual de Leitura de Cartas; IgeoE; 5ª ed. 2002

[5] Wolf, Paul R. Elementary surveying. HarperCollins College Publishers, 9th Ed. 1994, USA.

Teaching method

The course consists of theoretical and practical classes, each 1,5 h per week, where it is intended the students to acquire knowledge with the oral presentation of the matters in the theoretical classes and the application to a selected set of practical exercises.    

The evaluation is done during the semester with tests.

Evaluation method

The evaluation includes two components: mini-tests (20%), fieldwork demonstration (2,5%) and theoretical-practical (77,5%).

The mini-tests (2 during the semester) will be done online (Moodle). The theoretical-practical component comprises one presential written test at the end of the semester.

It is approved who complies with the following: (i) frequency; (ii) final grade equal to or higher than 9.5/20; (iii) grade on written test equal to or higher than 9.0/20. 

The evaluation depends on getting frequency, which requires attending 2/3 of the practical classes and participating in the fieldwork demonstration.

The evaluation has a single component, theoretical-pratical (100%), with 3 tests performed at distance. The weight of the tests is 30%, 35% and 35%. It is approved who achieves a final grade equal or higher than 9.5/20. 

The students with a final grade higher than 14/20 have an oral assessment to confirm the grade. The students who do not present to this evaluation have a final grade of 14/20.

Subject matter

[1] Cartography: topography maps; earth representation; coordinates systems; cartographic projections.

[2] Measurements and observation equipments: difference in level; angles; distances.

[3] Classical surveying methods: levelling; topography surveying.

[4] Network of topographic support: triangulation; intersection; traversing.

[5] Other surveying methods: GPS – Global Positioning System; aerial photogrammetry; remote sensing; laser scanning.

[6] Geographic information systems: elementary concepts and applications.