Remote Sensing & Spatial Analysis

Established by the Arizona Board of Regents: PhD minor 1976

The University of Arizona offers an unparalleled opportunity to pursue a multidisciplinary Ph.D. minor degree in remote sensing and related fields in spatial analysis. The range of courses offered in these fields provide students access to innovative geospatial tools they can integrate in their own research. This is possible because a wide variety of academic departments and faculty participate in remote sensing and spatial analysis activities. To provide the student and fellow researchers an interlinked work and study environment, the remote sensing and spatial analysis program was set up through the university's interdisciplinary programs. It is administered by a committee of participating remote sensing and spatial analysis faculty. The Ph.D. minor in Remote Sensing & Spatial Analysis offers course work which ranges from the fundamentals of the physics and optics of remote sensing to image processing, pattern recognition, geographic information systems, time series analysis, geospatial analysis and modeling. The Program curriculum also addresses the applications of these tools in the fields of agriculture, archaeology, astronomy, atmospheric sciences, environmental sciences, geography, geology, global change, hydrology, phenology, planetary sciences, renewable natural resources, and soil science. The curriculum can be supplemented by participating in the many research projects in both applied and basic aspects of remote sensing and GIS technology that are going on at the University of Arizona often sponsored by agencies such as NASA, NSF and DoD.

Faculty Membership

Steven R. Archer
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Avelino Arellano
Atmospheric Sciences
Victor R. Baker
Hydrology & Water Resources
Richard Bennett
Department of Geosciences
Gary Christopherson
School of Geography and Development
Andrew Comrie
School of Geography and Development
Kamel Didan
Electrical & Computer Engineering
D. Phillip Guertin
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Hoshin Gupta
Hydrology & Water Resources
Christopher L. Lukinbeal
School of Geography and Development
Stuart E. Marsh
School of Natural Resources and Environment
David Moore
School of Natural Resources and Environment
Susan Moran
Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science
Barron Orr
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Sudha Ram
Management Information Systems
Christopher A. Scott
School of Geography and Development
William K Smith
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Daoqin Tong
School of Geography & Development
Willem J. van Leeuwen, Chair
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Craig Wissler
School of Natural Resources and the Environment
Stephen R. Yool
School of Geography & Development
Xubin Zeng
Atmospheric Sciences

Participating Colleges & Departments

Program Bylaws

Preamble
(adopted November 5, 2009)

 

The Graduate Interdisciplinary Program in Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis (RSSA) offers a Ph.D. minor for students that are interested in acquiring a broader specialization in geographic information science and fundamental and applied remote sensing science that is not available in their PhD major. The program is interdisciplinary and provides an academic environment in which to examine and apply earth observing systems, tools and technologies, and spatial analysis techniques and approaches in an integrated manner to the benefit of biological, physical, and social sciences and society.

 

It is the responsibility of the RSSA Program to provide an interdisciplinary Ph.D. minor. Other responsibilities include the recruiting of students for the Ph.D. minor, setting appropriate course requirements, maintaining a faculty membership whom can serve on Ph.D. committees and keeping the needed records. Innovative planning and committed leadership are vital to the success of the program. This includes the promotion and facilitation of collaborative research. These and related functions are served by the Committee on Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis and its Executive Committee.

 

In the following sections, the Bylaws that govern the policies and operating procedures are described.

 
Article 1. Executive Committee and Chairperson of the Committee

a)      Executive Committee

i.   The program's Executive Committee (a subset of the entire Committee on Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis; see Article 3. Membership, below), which is appointed by and is responsible to the Director of the Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs, serves as the executive, administrative and policy making board for the Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis Program. The organization and structure of this Committee shall conform to the Guidelines for Interdisciplinary Programs established by the Director of Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs.

ii.   The Executive Committee consists of at least 5 members, including the chair, representing the major areas of study within the Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis Program. The Executive Committee is responsible for nominating or receiving nominations for new members of the Executive Committee and will vote on these nominations. Members of the Executive Committee will be appointed only from the membership of the RSSA Committee. Each Executive Committee member will serve a five-year term, with terms on the Executive Committee staggered in time. Each year of service will begin on July 1st and end on June 30th of the following year. Each of these terms can be renewed by vote of the Executive Committee and approval of the Director of Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs.

iii.   The Executive Committee is responsible for administering the RSSA graduate program, publicizing the Program both intra- and extra-murally, planning the continued updating and development of the Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis Program, evaluating and approving case-by-case requests for waivers to the requirements, formulating the annual budget, assisting in the securing and allocating of the necessary funding, and advising University administration on issues pertinent to the overall program.

iv.   An Executive Committee membership quorum (for a meeting or mail-in voting) shall constitute more than half of the Executive Committee membership with majority vote deciding the result. In case of an even vote the chair will decide.

 

b)      Chairperson

i.   The Chairperson of the Committee will be appointed by the Director of Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs from a recommendation submitted by the Executive Committee. The Chairperson will normally serve a five-year term (each year will begin on July 1st and end on June 30th of the following year). The Chair may not serve more than ten years consecutively or two terms. Recommendation for a second term must be approved by a two-thirds positive vote of the Executive Committee. The Chair is part of the Executive Committee

ii.   The duties of the Chair are: a) call and preside at meetings of the Executive Committee as needed, but not less than one time per semester, b) appoint necessary subcommittees as needed, c) administer the budget of the RSSA Program, d) apply for institutional graduate fellowship and recruitment awards, obtain fee waivers and reward students for both meritorious performance and financial need (as applicable to Ph.D. minor students), e) manage administrative matters and serve as the immediate supervisor of the program staff person (if applicable), f) prepare annual reports and budget requests, g) direct course change and approval forms and oversee the updating of the graduate handbook.

 
Article 2. Standing Assignments or Committees

A curriculum committee will be established to review the core curriculum and provide recommendations for improving the program, updating the requirements, and substituting courses for courses that have been dropped. This committee shall consist of members of the Executive Committee and the professors responsible for teaching the core curriculum. Student input will be requested to assist in this task. This task should be undertaken at least once every three years if not more often, depending on circumstances.

 
Article 3. Membership

a)   Nominations for membership in the RSSA Committee (the program faculty) can be made by submitting a request for membership, a recent curriculum vita and two letters of recommendation to the Chair of the Executive Committee. The Chair can then poll the executive committee or submit the information for a formal vote. A majority of positive votes of the Executive Committee shall be required for membership. The Chair will submit the recommendation for appointment to the Director of Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs.

b)   Criteria for membership shall include scholarly and research productivity in remote sensing and/or spatial analysis research and active service with students as dissertation directors, committee members or sources of research funding.

c)   Members shall be listed as Faculty of the Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis Committee in the graduate handbook and in the Graduate Catalog.

d)   Membership shall be the subject of periodic review by the Executive Committee. A member of the Committee or Executive Committee on Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis may be dropped from membership due to failure to participate in the activities of the Committee (e.g. refusal to be actively involved in the teaching of the required courses, track courses, special electives or required independent study). Participation includes but is not limited to service as the Ph.D. minor advisor for graduate students, active participation as committee members on minor graduate committees, providing funding and advice to students. Representatives should become familiar with the requirements of the Ph.D. minor. In the event that a member is dropped from the program, that member may reapply if the criteria established above are met.

e)   Each member of the RSSA Committee shall have one vote on matters brought to the Committee by the Executive Committee. A quorum of the RSSA Committee shall constitute one-third of the membership.

 
Article 4. Amendments

The Bylaws may be amended or revised by motion of the Executive Committee and a two-third positive vote by a quorum of the RSSA Committee members.