Since the raster operations considered in this class support a large number of existing ESS classes you might consider a number of possible ‘exotic’ options:

Option 1-‘imbedded micro classes’: The idea of ‘imbedded micro classes’ is a short set of customized class lectures (or assigned video ‘reading’ and lab exercises) on a raster-TIN methods that is given in other ESS classes. For instance, for 326 Geomorphology class you would have a specialist lecture on exploiting ultrahigh resolution LIDAR elevation data with TIN. Goals would include: giving the student a basic understanding on how LIDAR can support geomorphic studies, provide a pathway to more information (e.g. Harvey Greenburg) and promote taking GIS classes. Another example might be a short lecture(s) in a petrology class on how raster classification methods can be used with an image of a thin section to classify minerals and characterize texture in new ways. In general, it may be that it is possible to generate micro GIS lectures for a majority (all?) of ESS classes that the students would find useful, interesting, and provide the inspiration to take advanced GIS classes.

Option 2-customization : It might be particularly advantageous to consider allowing the students to customize the class to meet their own needs. In this case the class would consist of a set of core lectures, with critical concepts that all students need, and a large set of ‘canned’ elective lectures (ranging from videos to dynamic web pages) that cover a wide range of Raster/TIN methodology. Each student could then customize the class by selecting from this subset lectures, after completing the core lectures, that support his personal research interest. An interesting possibility is that these videos might also form the bases for customized classes for tuition paying industry workers.

Option 3-Introducton to ESS: Facility could be invited to show how they use raster and TIN data structures in their research. This would not only make the class much more interesting but would help introduce new graduate students to ESS.