Training Kit on Participatory Spatial Information Management and Communication. CTA/IFAD

Module M09 - Participatory Scale Mapping and Surveying


This Module covers participatory mapping methods for scale mapping and surveying. Trainees are introduced to the relevant technologies and processes for making scale maps, including documenting community data on existing base maps, ground-truthing with a compass or GPS unit, making maps from scratch using compass surveys and GPS surveys.

Making scale maps requires an understanding of scale, compass directions and coordinate systems – topics which are covered in M09U01 on Basic Cartography. Principles and concepts for collecting quality map data are presented in M09U02. Selecting from among three distinct methods for making scale maps may be done according to the needs of the prospective mapping project. M09U03 describes how to draw community data on existing geo-referenced base maps. M09U04 shows how to use a compass with a map and how to conduct a compass traverse. M09U05 presents the use of GPS for mapping. M09U06 covers the process of drawing final maps by hand drafting or computer drafting and verifying the maps with the community.

Scale maps are important tools for communicating community spatial information to decision makers. Whether negotiating specific land issues or planning detailed land use, it is important to know the size of areas or distance, the exact boundaries of areas or the precise relationship of one area or point to another. For these quantitative questions, scale maps are essential.

Module objectives / expected outcomes

After the completion of the Module the trainee will describe principles of scale maps and basic cartography, collect data for scale mapping, produce scale maps using existing base maps, use a compass and conduct compass surveys, use GPS for mapping and draw and produce scale maps.

Content outline and main topics covered


2 – 3 ½ days, depending on whether all mapping methods are practised

Download documents

Source: CTA. 2010. Training Kit on Participatory Spatial Information Management and Communication. CTA, The Netherlands and IFAD, Italy (ISBN: 978-92-9081-446-7)