Marine GIS Applications (using QGIS)

Key Info
Description - a brief synopsis, abstract or summary of what the learning resource is about: 

This course provides an in-depth overview of the application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to the marine environment using QGIS. All resources can be accessed from the provided URL. 

Topic 1:
Aims and Objectives:

  • Provide an introduction to GIS for marine applications
  • Focus on some publicly available marine datasets
  • Show the potential applications of GIS for the marine environment

Learning Outcomes:

  • Knowledge and understanding of GIS, spatial data, raster, and vector models
  • Core tasks involved in the GIS analysis process including data acquisition, management, manipulation and analysis, and presentation and output
  • Core functionality of QGIS Desktop and QGIS Browser
  • Creating and editing spatial data
  • Appreciation of coastal and marine GIS data applications

Topic 2: Introduction to Marine GIS

  • A brief explanation of GIS
  • GIS components
  • GIS data models
  • Marine GIS applications
  • Spatial analysis

Topic 3: Introduction to QGIS

  • Why QGIS?
  • Exercise: Introduction To QGIS

Topic 4: View data in QGIS Desktop

  • QGIS provides several windows, convenient for the user
  • Exercise

Topic 5: Map Projections and Coordinate Systems

  • Geographic Coordinate Systems
  • Coordinate Systems And Map Projections
  • Video: Map projections 
  • Exercise

Topic 6: Create Base Map in QGIS

  • Define the Area of Interest (AOI)
  • Exercise

Topic 7: Creating Data Collection from the World Ocean Database

  • Exercise: Obtaining Marine Data from the World Ocean Database

Topic 8: Introduction to Ocean Data View

  • Video: Ocean Data View (ODV) by Reiner Schlitzer
  • Exercise: Creating Data Collection from the World Ocean Database
  • Exercise: Export Marine Data from the Ocean Data View

Topic 9: Working with Spreadsheet Data

  • Exercise: Adding Spreadsheet Data

Topic 10: Edit Data in QGIS

  • Exercise

Topic 11: Edit Data: Area of Interest and Analysis Mask

  • Exercise

Topic 12: Interpolating surfaces

  • Map Interpolation
  • Interpolating Surfaces: Summary 
  • Exercise: Interpolate to Raster

Topic 13: Rendering Raster Data

  • Exercise

Topic 14: Raster Calculator

  • Exercise: Using the Raster Calculation

Topic 15: Working with NetCDF

  • Exercise

Topic 16: Plotting Vector Arrows from U and V Component Grids

  • Marine Geospatial Ecology Tools (MGET)

Topic 17: Downloading species observations from the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS)

  • Exercise: Downloading OBIS Data in CSV Format

Topic 18: Creating KML files for Google Earth

  • Example KML document
  • Exercise

Topic 19: Publication Quality Maps

  • Exercise: Create Publication Quality Maps
Authoring Person(s) Name: 
Reiner Schlitzer
Authoring Organization(s) Name: 
Ocean Teacher Global Academy
License - link to legal statement specifying the copyright status of the learning resource: 
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License - CC BY-SA 4.0
Access Cost: 
No fee
Primary language(s) in which the learning resource was originally published or made available: 
More info about
Keywords - short phrases describing what the learning resource is about: 
Data handling
Data management
Data publication
Data sharing
Data usage
Geoscience data
Marine data
Ocean data
Open access
Open data
Organizing data
Technical infrastructure - Core Trustworthy Data Repositories Requirements
Transformation tools for data
Subject Discipline - subject domain(s) toward which the learning resource is targeted: 
Physical Sciences and Mathematics: Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology
Published / Broadcast: 
Thursday, May 1, 2014
Publisher - organization credited with publishing or broadcasting the learning resource: 
Ocean Teacher Global Academy
Media Type - designation of the form in which the content of the learning resource is represented, e.g., moving image: 
Presentation - representation of the particular way in which an author shows, describes or explains one or more concepts, e.g., a set of Powerpoint slides.
Educational Info
Purpose - primary educational reason for which the learning resource was created: 
Instruction - detailed information about aspects or processes related to data management or data skills.
Learning Resource Type - category of the learning resource from the point of view of a professional educator: 
Course - series of units and lessons used to teach the skills and knowledge required by its curriculum.
Target Audience - intended audience for which the learning resource was created: 
Research scientist
Mid-career research scientist
Early-career research scientist
Research faculty
Graduate student
Data professional
Intended time to complete - approximate amount of time the average student will take to complete the learning resource: 
More than 1 Day (but less than 1 week)
Framework - A community-based organization plan or set of steps for education or training: 
ICSU - World Data System Training Resources Guide