Training Resources for Archaeological Remote Sensing

This page is dedicated to providing Indigenous communities, students, and other archaeological professionals links to open-source resources for the collection, processing, and interpretation of geophysical/remote sensing data in archaeology. Although the resources here focus on GPR and unmarked grave identification, similar resources exist for all techniques. Please see the Open-Source Software list for methods to process your data for free. Similarly, you can use the map of experts in Canada to get in touch with experts who are volunteering their time and expertise to help Indigenous communities in the search for unmarked graves.

Introductory Videos

Preparing for a Ground Search - Consideration, Options, and Examples. Webinar of the National Advisory Committee on Residential Schools Missing Children and Unmarked Burials. 

Using GPR to Locate Unmarked Graves. Webinar by Sensors & Software Inc.

Best Practices in Remote Sensing for Grave Detection. Webinar in partnership with Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc, the Canadian Archaeological Association and the Institute of Prairie and Indigenous Archaeology.

Beyond Ground Penetrating Radar: How other techniques can complement GPR and help in the search for residential school unmarked burials. Webinar of the National Advisory Committee on Residential Schools Missing Children and Unmarked Burials. 

General Introductory Resources for Remote Sensing

Schmidt, Armin. 2004 Remote Sensing and Geophysical Prospection, Internet Archaeology 15.

Geophysics for Practicing Geoscientists (2017), Geophysics for Practicing Geoscientists — GPG 0.0.1 documentation

Surveying and Mapping (2021), Surveying and Mapping - Open Textbook Library (

Ground-Penetrating Radar and Unmarked Graves

A number of companies have recently published free videos on YouTube discussing the processing and interpreting of GPR data for unmarked grave identification. 

GPR and Unmarked Graves Webinar

Sensors and Software

Using GPR for locating Unmarked Graves (

Interpreting GPR

Sensors and Software

Webinar: Basics of Interpreting Ground Penetrating Radar Data - Part 1 - YouTube

RADAN GPR processing tutorials


RADAN 7 Day 1: Standard Raw File Processing - YouTube

Start with Marked Graves - a gpr lesson from a cemetery | ground penetrating radar

Bigman Geophysical / LEARN GPR


The Canadian Archaeological Association Working Group for Unmarked Graves has also published a series of three small technical documents on the collection, processing and interpretation of GPR data. 

We also published a short storymap about geophysics and unmarked graves for communities that provide information on geophysics and the process of carrying out a survey.

Eric Simons (UBC) published a set of illustrations describing how GPR data is collected and interpreted, with a focus on burial searches. 

Computer Science

As most open-source software that processes geophysical/ remote sensing data requires knowledge of computer science, we encourage you to learn the details of how this data is processed and employed as it will lead to better interpretations overall.

CS50: Introduction to Computer Science | Harvard University

DAACS Programming in R 

Field Experience/Hands-on-Training

Most archaeologists have received their geophysical training from geophysics, physics, and geology departments at various universities and colleges. There really is no substitute for a post-secondary education, taking classes, or completing part of a degree in these fields. Please check your local post-secondary education institute for field school and in-class opportunities to gain expertise. For example:

There are some GPR field schools in Europe that are currently running. International field schools are often expensive and require staying in a foreign country for long periods of time, often prohibiting attendance. 

The other venue to receive geophysical education is from the manufacturers of equipment. We encourage anyone who buys technical equipment to also purchase the commercial training programs usually included by the company. Some companies, such as GSSI, are now offering training workshops and programs that do not require you to purchase the equipment. Please check out these opportunities by contacting the manufacturer directly. 

Open-Source Academic Journals and Articles

Geophysics and remote sensing remain underutilized and under published in Canada. As a result, there are limited opportunities to compare results to published literature. If you are practicing with these techniques, you will need to be familiar with the international literature given the lack of regionally specific materials. Below are some common open-source venues for archaeological prospection studies. There are a number of good examples for education and inspiration purposes, therefore only a few are listed here. You are encouraged to look through each journal’s catalogue.


Internet Archaeology (Open Access)

Remote Sensing  (Open Access)

Archaeological Prospection (Paid Subscription, but some articles are Open Access)