Lyndon D. Estes | Assistant Professor | Graduate School of Geography | Clark University

Full courses

Current (Clark University)

  • 2018-2019, 2019-2020. GEOG 391: Innovation in Earth Observation. Understanding the Earth System depends on observations of socioeconomic and environmental processes collected across multiple spatial and temporal scales, many of which cannot be addressed by existing Earth Observation (EO, or remote sensing) systems because of inherent tradeoffs between the extent, duration, frequency, and resolution of observation. In the past few years these obstacles have started to fall as new methods and technologies are introduced. This seminar surveys the key recent advances in EO, and their associated applications. 
  • 2018-2019, 2019-2020. GEOG 110-311: Introduction to Quantitative Methods. This is an introductory course in applied statistical analysis with emphasis on computer skills. Students gain proficiency in using spreadsheets to organize data and to perform the most common statistical procedures such as univariate analysis, hypothesis testing, estimation of means, regression, and association. Undergraduate students receive credit for a Formal Analysis perspective. 
  • 2017-2018, 2019-2020. GEOG 246-346: Geospatial Analysis with R. Free and open source R is increasingly used for geospatial analyses. R and its ecosystem of supporting software also facilitate the creation, presentation, and reproducibility of analyses. R is therefore very close to being a one-stop shop for the modern GIScientist. This course provides students with the skills they need to use R as a GIS. There are additional emphases on programming, presentation, and reproducibility, which entails learning to develop R libraries, development of presentations and reports using Rmarkdown, and using version control with github. Students will learn and apply R skills by working on a specific research problem. Open to upper level undergraduate and graduate students. 
  • 2018-2019. GEOG 287-387: New Methods in Earth Observation. This course is a skills-based follow-on to GEO391-Innovation in Earth Observation, a seminar that reviews key limitations facing Earth Observation (EO), and the recent developments that are challenging these limitations. In this course, students work, within the broader context of several active research projects, on developing and applying several specific EO methods that were reviewed in GEOG391. These methods are: (i) scaling-up crop growth and productivity estimates derived from automated in situ sensors and UAS imagery up to smallsats; (ii) processing imagery using cloud-based computational platforms, such as Google Earth Engine and Radiant Earth; and (iii) an active learning approach (combining crowdsourcing and machine learning) to mapping agricultural land cover. We learn a range of new skills, including: programmatic access to sensor and image-serving APIs, as well as cloud-based earth observation platforms, using Javascript, python, and R; use of AWS computing instances; Postgres/PostGIS databases; and UAS flight planning and image processing with PIX4D software. After an initial introduction to the various toolsets, students form project teams (~3-5 people each) to tackle further development and application of one of the three project areas. These projects are assessed by means of a formal in-class presentation and team-authored final project. 

Past (Princeton University)

  • 2015-2016, 2016-2017. ENV 407: Africa’s Food and Conservation Challenge. Co-developed and taught with Tim Searchinger.
  • 2013-2014, 2014-2015. EEB 308: Conservation Biology. 
  • 2012-2013, 2013-2014. EEB-ENV 341: Water, Savannas, and Society: Global Change and Sustainability in Africa’s Hallmark Ecosystem.

Short courses, guest lectures, and teaching assistantships

  • 2015-2016, 2016-2017. Applied Course on UAVs for Environmental Monitoring. University of Basilica/Princeton University (co-developed and taught)
  • 2015-2016, 2016-2017. ENV 201: Fundamentals of Environmental Studies: Population, Land Use, Biodiversity, and Energy. Princeton University (guest lecturer).
  • 2015-2016, 2016-2017. WWS586B/EEB516: Conservation of Endangered Species and Ecosystems. Princeton University (guest lecturer).