Land Cover Classification

Protocol

Students locate, photograph, and determine the MUC class for 90 m x 90 m areas of homogeneous land cover.

Supporting Protocols

Protocols to help in completion of the main protocol
Students measure properties of vegetation and identify species in order to classify land cover using the MUC System and to provide supplemental information about their site.
Students construct and use the clinometer by following the directions and using the formula below. The clinometer also lends itself for additional hands-on teaching exercises of trigonometric principles
Students will use the compass to set up field sites that can be measured and returned to every year. In addition, the a compass is used to help orientate soil temperature and moisture sites, ensure that the door to the Atmosphere Instrument Shelter is facing away from the Equator, and in noting direction on all site maps.
A densiometer is an instrument used for taking measurements of canopy cover as part of the biometry measurements described in the Biometry Protocol. Students will follow these directions to construct and use the densiometer.
The GLOBE Program uses the Modified UNESCO Classification (MUC) System, a classification system which follows international standards and uses ecological terminology for the identification of specific land cover classes.
Students use a tape measure often when taking measurements at Land Cover Sample Sites. It is critical that you use the tape measure in the correct manner. This portocol will help students become familiar with the tape measure.
Students select a 90 m x 90 m homogeneous site to carry out the Land Cover Sample Site Protocol and set-up the site to take the appropriate measurements.

Field Guides

Step-by-step instructions for collection data according to the protocols.

Data Sheets

Sheets to be filled out during data collection

Learning Activities

Activities to help students learn more about the instruments and protocols
Students learn how to evaluate the accuracy of a classification they perform in this tutorial.
A summary of learning activities for the biosphere investigation area.
Students learn how to evaluate the accuracy of a classification they perform.
Using MultiSpec, students compare two images of their GLOBE Study Site; one from the 1990's and one from the 2000's, to determine how the land cover has changed in that time span in this tutorial.
Students use MultiSpec to perform unsupervised clustering of their Landsat TM image and then assign MUC classes to every cluster to create a land cover map.
Students use the satellite image of the GLOBE Study Site and their knowledge of remote sensing to decide where a new hospital should be located.
Students classify land cover by visually examining their site as well as mapping and recording ground cover onto graph paper as they walk across their site. Students will use a GPS to locate the site in addition to photographing their site.
Students draw a visualization and learn about all the design choices involved and how these choices affect what is communicated by the visualization.
Students use the satellite image of their GLOBE Study Site to become familiar with the different types of land cover in their area.
Students will analyze visualizations and graphs that show the annual cycle of plant growth and decline.
Using MultiSpec, students compare two images of their GLOBE Study Site; one from the 1990's and one from the 2000's, to determine how the land cover has changed in that time span.
Students make a collection of leaves and then discover how a hierarchical classification system is developed by sorting and organizing their leaves according to a set of labels and rules which they specify.
Students use visualizations to explore the relation between elevation and temperature and begin learning how to make important patterns evident in visualizations.
Students outline and label different areas of land cover as seen on their Landsat TM image to create a land cover map.
Students outline and label different areas of land cover as seen on their Landsat TM image to create a land cover map in this tutorial.
To help students understand the connection between remote sensing technology, computer imagery and land cover assessment and to demonstrate how a satellite sensor relates information to a computer
To familiarize students with the importance of perspective and introduce students to various scales of remotely sensed data.
To familiarize students with the concept of modeling as it is related to remote sensing and to the process of digitizing images.
To help students determine that a system's boundaries are based upon the question(s) a scientist wants to answer.
To investigate the idea that every dynamic system has energy and matter in several different forms. Inputs and outputs will vary depending upon the physical components of the site, the plant and animal life, the determined boundaries or scale of the study and the season.
Students correlate graphs of vegetation vigor with those of temperature and precipitation data for four diverse ecosystems to determine which climatic factor is limiting growth.
Students find another GLOBE school that reported the same MUC class and systematically compare the other GLOBE measurements that they each reported.