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GEOM 7362 - Geodetic Positioning 1

Geomatics Part-time Studies Course

School of Construction and the Environment

To support you and your education, BCIT is adapting applied learning in formats appropriate to the unfolding global situation. Spring and Summer PTS classes are being delivered in an online format unless you are notified otherwise.

Course Details

This course introduces the student to the topic of geodetic positioning. Topics covered include fundamental geodetic concepts, coordinate systems and coordinate transformations, the Earth's gravity field, vertical datums, geoid models and height systems, horizontal geodetic datums, reference systems and reference frames, datum and coordinate system transformations, direct and inverse computations on a sphere, an ellipsoid and in three-dimensions, and an introduction to space based positioning techniques.


Successful completion of a 2 year Geomatics Diploma Program or Equivalencies approval from Program Head





Fall 2020

Below is one offering of this course for the Fall 2020 term.

CRN 39056

Tue Sep 01 - Tue Dec 15 15 Weeks

Class Meeting Times

Dates Days Times Locations
Sep 01 - Dec 15 Online



Course Outline

TBD – see Learning Outcomes in the interim




  1. Internet delivery format.
  2. Departmental approval needed
  3. Students may receive approval to register for this course with completion of 2 year Geomatics diploma. To receive approval, please email your official academic transcript(s) and BCIT Student ID to If you are new to BCIT, create an ID at **IMPORTANT: The final exam must be written at an approved Exam Centre only. Details will be emailed to you after registering for the course.
  4. Important course information will be sent to you prior to your course start date. Check your myBCIT email account to access this information.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, the student will be able to:

  • Explain the history of geodesy and it's relevance to the current practice of geomatics.
  • Discuss the uses of different geodetic reference surfaces and orientation.
  • Explain the geodetic concepts and quantities of the celestial sphere, time, latitude and longitude.
  • Perform geometric geodetic computations using spherical and ellipsoidal earth models.
  • Explain and relate different types of coordinate systems - Terrestrial (including Conformal Mapping), Celestial and Satellite.
  • Discuss the Earth's Gravity Field, Gravity potential, Gravity Anomalies and the effects of Gravity on survey instruments and field procedures.
  • Discuss various vertical datums and geoid models, including:
    • Different types of Vertical Datum (e.g. NGVD29, NAVD88, CGVD28),
    • Different Geoid Models (e.g. GEOID96, GEIOD99, GSD95, CGG2000).
  • Define and relate different height systems, including their relationships to Earth's Gravity Field.
  • Perform height computations in different height systems.
  • Define and relate different types of Geodetic Datums, Reference Frames and Spatial Reference Systems used in North America including:
    • NAD27, NAD83 and transformations between them,
    • Reference Frames such as ITRF, WGS84, NAD83 (CSRSxx), NAD83(Epoch xx),
    • Spatial Reference Systems such as ITRS, NAD83 (NSRS), NAD83 (CSRS).
  • Perform Datum and Coordinate System Transformation, Forward and Inverse Solutions on the ellipsoid and in three dimensions.
  • Reduce terrestrial observations for gravity and ellipsoidal effects.
  • Analyse the physical properties, instrumentation, application and accuracies of some Space-Based Positioning Techniques, such as Transit Doppler, GPS, GLONASS, SLR, VLBI, and Galileo.

Effective as of Winter 2012


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