Professional Course

Foundational Field Skills for Earth and Environmental Sciences

edX, Online
5 weeks
105 USD
Next course start
Start anytime See details
Self-paced Online
5 weeks
105 USD
Next course start
Start anytime See details
Self-paced Online
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Course description

Foundational Field Skills for Earth and Environmental Sciences

This course focusses on your proficiency of field skills and contextual knowledge within earth and environmental sciences. Each section focuses on a specific skill set and represents a way of acknowledging achievements or skill acquisition at a granular level.

Key field skills included in this course are navigation, field observations and note-taking, and field sketching.

Field Observations and Note-taking

This section introduces how to set yourself up to be an effective observer and recorder using the platform of a field notebook. A field notebook serves many potential purposes. It is a valuable record of what you have seen, heard, discussed, and thought about in the field. It may contain the data which will lead to an oral presentation, a report, thesis, or even a scientific journal article. It may be a graded portion of a course. Or it may be something you and your relatives will find interesting decades in the future.

This section provides you with the knowledge, platforms, skills to guide you in taking quality and organised notes while in the field.


The purpose of this section is to learn the fundamentals behind navigation and to develop core navigation skills. Today’s technology allows more confidence and safety in outdoor activities, but there are still some fundamental knowledge and skills you need to have to effectively use these.

Upcoming start dates

1 start date available

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  • Self-paced Online
  • Online
  • English

Who should attend?



Course delivery details

This course is offered through University of Canterbury, a partner institute of EdX.

4-5 hours per week


  • Verified Track -$105
  • Audit Track - Free

Certification / Credits

What you'll learn

  • Develop and execute fundamental field skills and techniques in the earth and environmental sciences.
  • Familiarize with and perform core navigation skills.
  • Develop techniques to make effective scientific observations in the field.
  • Distinguish between what is an 'observation' and an 'interpretation'.
  • Execute systematic notetaking of scientific field observations and data collection.
  • Build your ability to draft field sketches to match what you see in the field.

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141 Portland Street
02139 Cambridge Massachusetts


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