First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Human and Social Sciences and Cultural Heritage
Course unit
SUP4063076, A.A. 2016/17

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2014/15

Information on the course unit
Degree course First cycle degree in
HISTORY (Ord. 2012)
LE0600, Degree course structure A.Y. 2012/13, A.Y. 2016/17
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 9.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination HISTORICAL CARTOGRAPHY
Department of reference Department of Historical and Geographic Sciences and the Ancient World
E-Learning website
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction Italian
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge SILVIA PIOVAN M-GGR/01

Course unit code Course unit name Teacher in charge Degree course code

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Educational activities in elective or integrative disciplines M-GGR/01 Geography 9.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 3rd Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 9.0 63 162.0 No turn

Start of activities 27/09/2016
End of activities 20/01/2017
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2016 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
2 Commissione 2017/18 01/12/2017 30/11/2018 PIOVAN SILVIA (Presidente)
PASE ANDREA (Membro Effettivo)
1 Commissione 2016/17 01/12/2016 30/11/2017 PIOVAN SILVIA (Presidente)
PASE ANDREA (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: There are no specific prerequisites.
Target skills and knowledge: Introduction
The geo-historical study of the territory and the process of valorization of cultural heritage are closely linked to the use of tools that allow a multiscale and diachronic analysis of the territory, as well as their spatial representation. These tools include the use of current and historical maps, vertical and oblique photos, GPS/GNSS, and other GIScience (Geographic Information System Science) technologies. This course will present from both a theoretical and practical points of views the fundamentals of geospatial data collection, transformation, mapping, and analysis. Numerous examples, case studies and real applications will be used.

Knowledge and skills acquired
- Ability to construct, interpret and use cartographic representations, especially for the design of cultural tourism and the geo-historical analysis of the territory, through both Italian and international contexts.
- Ability to design, through a chronological path, the main stages of the history of cartography, analyzing the cartographic products in a socio-cultural as well as geographical and historical framework.
- Ability to find cartographic and documentary resources (through both Italian and international case studies) which can serve also to design proposals for cultural tourism.
- Ability to manage a GIS project in all its phases (planning, acquisition of data, pre-processing, processing and analysis, and data representation (map building)).
Examination methods: Oral exam
Assessment criteria: Verification of the achievement of skills and abilities described in the syllabus of the course.
Course unit contents: The course will consist of four "modules", which can be summarized as follows and that are described in detail on the bottom:
1) Elements of theoretical cartography (meaning of map, purpose of maps, the power of maps,...) and techniques of cartography
2) Reading current (both hard copy and digital) and ancient maps (from both Italian and international contexts)
3) History of cartography
4) GIS and WebGIS applications for cultural tourism and geo-historical analysis of the territory (from both Italian and international contexts).

All modules include laboratory activities (reading maps, GIS laboratory). A fieldtrip is also planned.

Details of each module:

1) Elements of theoretical cartography and techniques of cartography
- Meaning of the map, purpose of maps, the power of maps.
- Elements of geodesy: shape of the Earth, geoid and ellipsoid, datum and projection systems, coordinate systems.
- Elements of the map: scale, projections, properties, conventional symbols and symbology mapping.

2) Reading current (both hard copy and digital) and ancient maps (from both Italian and international contexts)
- The Italian cartographic production (official institutions). The IGM. Thematic mapping and local topographic maps (CTR).
- Examples of international mapping agencies (e.g. USGS in USA) and related cartographic products.
- Use of symbols and place names.
- Map interpretation: analysis of the relief, hydrography, vegetation and human aspects, calculation of coordinates, distance, slope, angle.

3) History of cartography
- Prehistoric, mesopotamian, egyptian, greek, roman, medieval, renaissance and modern representations. Techniques and cartographic production will be analyze in their appropriate historical-cultural-social framework.

4) GIS and WebGIS
- Definition of GIS and GIScience and their role in the different geo-historical disciplines.
- Phases of GIS project construction.
- Data models (vector and raster).
- Structure and basics of ArcGIS and extentions.
- Importing existing data and consuming web-based maps services.
- Digitizing new features and importing data from GPS.
- Creating a map in ArcGIS and use of symbolism.
- Selecting and queries.
- Georeferencing (historical maps, vertical aerial photos, ...)
- Use of ArcToolbox tools.
- Definition of DEM / DTM / DSM and simple use of ArcScene (3-D).
- Elements of WebGIS and their use in conservation, management and valorization of cultural heritage.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Lectures, reading current and ancient maps, historical atlases, GIS laboratory, fieldtrip.
Additional notes about suggested reading: In addition to the books suggested, additional materials and handouts of the lessons will be distributed.
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Lodovisi A., Torresani S., Cartografia e informazione geografica. Storia e tecniche.. Bologna: Patron, 2005. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Mazzanti C., Storia della Cartografia:dalle origini alla caduta dell’Impero Romano d’Occidente.. Pisa: Felici Editore, 2005.
  • Sauro U., Meneghel M., Bondesan A., Castiglioni B., Dalla carta topografica al paesaggio. Atlante Ragionato.. Firenze: IGM, 2011.
  • Sauro U., Meneghel M., Bondesan A., Castiglioni B., Dalla carta topografica al paesaggio. Atlante Ragionato.. Firenze: IGM, 2011.