QGIS in Maritime Archaeology

Event Date:
Start at 9:00 AM
March 12, 2022

This online introductory course will provide an overview of features in QGIS that are particularly useful in maritime archaeology. QGIS is a freely available GIS software package commonly used by archaeologists. Although focussing on this particular programme, the skills and procedure students are introduced to can be used in other GIS programmes (such as ArcGIS, gvSIG, GRASS GIS).

Participants will be provided with datasets and will gain experience using the programme through a series of practical exercises. These exercises will take place under supervision during the two online sessions and will also be completed in the week between the two sessions. This course has pre-recorded videos to watch, some practical homework exercises and then a live online session. This will reduce screen fatigue and make it more convenient for a greater range of time zones for our international participants.

Participants will be required to watch the pre-recorded videos and complete the homework tasks to earn NAS credits.


Phoebe Wild is Project Officer with MSDS Marine who has extensive experience in using GIS and has written a manual on how to use this programme.


The course is aimed at individuals undertaking the NAS Education Programme, either professional or avocational archaeologists who are interested in the practical application of this free software.

NAS members will receive 10 credits towards their Certificate or Award


A computer or tablet (phone screens are a bit small to look at for the whole day) with a good internet connection is essential. A built-in or external webcam and microphone are optional. A week before the course you will receive an invitation to the online course session which will be run through GoToMeeting. This is an online video conferencing programme that can be run directly through the internet or you get better connection if you download the small programme – it only takes a minute to do.

If you are concerned about your computer set up, please contact the organiser at education@nauticalarchaeologysociety.org for a test run before the course.


NAS members £40
Non-NAS members £80 (although as NAS membership starts at £12, you’re better off becoming a member and getting the discount rate immediately!)

Provisional Timetable in GMT

Pre-recorded videos of approximately 2hours duration

Introduction: What is GIS? (30mins)
Theory 1: Getting Started (15mins)
Practical 1: Setting up a Project (45mins)
Theory 2: Data sources (30mins)

Saturday 12th March 2022
09:00 – Welcome and Introductions and online etiquette
09:15 – Revision and questions from videos
09:30 – Review of Practical 1
09:45 – Practical 2: Adding, editing, and formatting data
10:30 – Theory 3: Creating data
10:45 – Practical 3: Creating polygons, points, and lines
11:30 – Theory 4: Modifying data
11:45 – Practical 4: Buffering, clipping, and merging data
12:30 – Theory 5: Interrogating data
13:15 – Practical 5: Selecting, querying, and extracting data
14:00 – Theory 6: Other tools
14:15 – Practical 6: Georeferencing
14:45 – Theory 7: Displaying and sharing data
15:00 – Practical 7: Creating figures and outputs
15:45 – Getting involved with NAS
16:00 – course end