Home' The Good Universities Guide : The Good Universities Guide 2015 Contents SURVEYING 153
Courses and specialisations
In universities, courses might be found in surveying, engineering,
spatial sciences, geomatics or a range of other academic areas.
If designing maps interests you, you should look at cartography.
The various traditional surveying specialisations (cadastral,
marine and mining) now sit alongside a host of other
geoinformatics sub-fields such as geographic information
systems, spatial information systems, global positioning and
photogrammetry, all of which exploit high-level technology to
collect, analyse, display and manage geographical and spatial
information. That’s one of the good things about this field:
technology knows no bounds. Even cartography courses have
enjoyed a facelift in recent years, with titles like multimedia
cartography making it to some course lists.
Some courses have ‘surveying’ in their name, but if a
geomatics specialisation is your preference you will often find it
within a general science, applied science, engineering or
technology degree, so it pays to do your research.
Where to study
Degrees in surveying and its many specialisations are offered at
a number of universities around the country — just remember to
check course handbooks to ensure that the course covers the
field in which you are looking to specialise. To compare entry
difficulty at different institutions, see the ‘How tough is it to get in?’
tables in Section 4.
The surveying profession has been experiencing significant skills
shortages for several years. The upside of this is that
employment prospects for surveyors are likely to remain positive
for several years to come. In response to the shortages, SSSI
has established the Spatial Education Leadership Group, which
aims to build a level of skilled capacity that is sustainable in the
long term. Its initiatives are designed to increase awareness of
the profession and the progression of spatial sciences. Other
SSSI initiatives include the Women in Spatial group, which aims
to engage women in the profession through schemes such as
forums and scholarships, and the SSSI Mentoring Program,
which offers mentoring to students and young professionals.
Ben — Bachelor of Applied Science (Surveying)
Why did you choose to study
I chose to study surveying because I had
been working as a survey assistant for
three months and enjoyed it. The mix of
office and outdoor work appealed to me
and without the degree it would be
difficult to progress in the industry.
What was the best thing about your course?
The best thing about the course was the mix of theory and
practical experience. It helps you to better understand the
processes associated with surveying, and the hands-on
experience is invaluable.
What was the worst thing about your course?
The worst things about the course were the hours and the
length of the course. It’s a four-year course and being an
applied science you are there on campus four or five days a
What did your course involve?
The course involved a mix of lectures, labs and practicals.
They all complement each other and the labs and practicals
reinforce what has been learnt in lectures.
There is also a work experience requirement for the course
that ensures you have had some paid experience before you
Have you found work in your field?
I already had a job with a surveying company prior to
commencing the course and was able to work on my days off
and over the holidays while I was studying. Since graduating I
have been working full time.
What advice would you give to students considering
Surveying is very mathematical, which means that there are a
lot of maths-based subjects in the course. But don’t let that
dissuade you. It’s a good course and, while it might get a little
tough at times, the career at the end is worth it. To anyone
choosing this course, I would strongly recommend getting a
job with a surveying company while you study. It makes it
much easier to get your head around things.
Have you completed further study?
The next level of study is either to complete a postgraduate
degree, or you can become a licensed surveyor (which is
done while you work). I have just started a training agreement
to become a licensed surveyor.
GUG 2015.book Page 153 Friday, June 13, 2014 11:51 AM
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