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Course on PLSS In College

Discussion in 'Education & Training' started by Ric Moore, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Ric Moore

    Ric Moore 6-Year Member

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    Question...for those of you that received a degree in surveying (or related degree), did you have a course specifically in the Public Lands Survey System or was it a portion of a more general course (i.e., Boundary, etc.)? Which school you attended would be helpful too. Thanks.
     
  2. Guy Townes

    Guy Townes 1-Year Member

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    Great Basin College has a class called "Public Land Survey System" in their BAS in Land Surveying/Geomatics Program.
     
  3. Jones

    Jones 2-Year Member

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    sarcasm Since I am from a Metes and Bounds State and so was the College I attended, so it is given that we had superior students and faculty. We only needed about a week of PLSS instruction to master everything we needed..

    I went to East Tennessee State, we did not have a full course devoted to the PLSS. I do feel like both the Metes and Bounds and the PLSS were covered about the same amount if not a little more instruction given to the PLSS. Two of my Professors were from PLSS states one being from Michigan and the other from Wisconsin.
     
  4. Dan B. Robison

    Dan B. Robison 7-Year Member

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    My ICS 'degree' had a whole 'booklet' on the PLSS...Fracis Hodgeman's 'little book' (1897) had multiple chapters dedicated to PLSS boundaries and the law...just about every survey text book in my library contains a few chapters.

    I get the most insight from Dr Knowles "Arkansas Boundaries" and Dr Elgn's "PLSS in Arkansas"...and of course the original deputy surveyor instructions from Tiffin to 1867...

    The 73 and 09 instructions (ALL chapters) make for good reading, but I follow the original footstep and not some math-magical 'square'.

    DDSM
     
    Jimmy Cleveland and FL/GA PLS. like this.
  5. thebionicman

    thebionicman 3-Year Member

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    Dr. Elgin used to do a course in Missouri that was almost exclusively PLSS. If I recall correctly it was 3 semester hours. It was a very good course that most Missouri guys (I knew) took.
    Oregon now translates the CFedS into 3 or 4 semester hours credit. The degree programs I have reviewed usually require a 3 semester hour course.
     
  6. ppm

    ppm 5-Year Member

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    Graduated from Oregon Institute of Techmology. It has been quite a while but I believe we had a quite a long study of the PLSS. May not have been a full term, but I would bet 3 - 4 weeks was spent on it.
     
  7. Dan B. Robison

    Dan B. Robison 7-Year Member

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    Dr Elgin spoke at the ASPS 50th Anniversery Conference...we drank a beer or two and dicussed military helicopters circa 69-73...and a bit of riparian...
    DDSM
     
    Jimmy Cleveland likes this.
  8. Bfarmer

    Bfarmer 4-Year Member

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    Location:
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    WY
    University of Wyoming
    http://www.uwyo.edu/civil/landsurvey/index.html

    LS 3130 (CE 2085) – Public Land Surveys (Spring & Fall)
    3 Credit Hours
    Basic fundamentals of the Public Land Survey System (PLSS), dependent and independent resurveys, survey plats, "bono fide rights", riparian boundaries, non-rectangular entities, corner evidence and the role of the modern day surveyor.
    Prerequisite: CE 2070 or LS 2010, and LS 2110.

    LS 4130 (CE 4740) – Advanced Public Lands (Fall)
    4 Credit Hours
    Advanced topics in situations and problems in the Public Land Survey system, with discussion of major court cases involving everyday applications to surveyors. 1975 BLM casebook and other sources of survey reference.
    Prerequisites: LS 3120 and LS 3130.
     
  9. StLSurveyor

    StLSurveyor 4-Year Member

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    I have taken the first Wyoming class (CE 2085) listed here, fantastic! I believe Dennis still teaches the class. Top notch class, material and delivery.
     
  10. Jon Collins

    Jon Collins 1-Year Member

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    I took both, they are great. Dennis is one of my favorite teachers/lecturers. .....Last time I saw him it was 10 below at the SD conference and he had no scraper in his rental car. I scraped his windshield while he shivered his Arizona tookus off.

    I took PLSS courses in my degree as well.
     
  11. aliquot

    aliquot 6-Year Member

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    Only Ken would believe that 3 credits is sufficient for a boundary surveyor working in the PLSS. There are some good three credit classes out there, but that's just not enough classroom (or screen) time to get more than a good introduction. A motivated intelligent surveyor will be able to learn what they need on their own, but not enough fall into this category.

    There are also some very bad PLSS classes being offered by ABET programs. One that I know of gets one of the most basic PLSS concepts, the double proportion, wrong.
     
    Paul likes this.
  12. Chris Bouffard

    Chris Bouffard Member

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    I sat for my for my exam in 1992, the same 16 hr 3 part exam that is still used in NJ. I passed the exam and received my license before the college degree requirement was implemented.
    I spent a considerable amount of time studying on a daily basis for about 2 years and soaking in as many classroom courses and purchased review materials as I could.
    What I found, in the end, is that after studying those books (many) that were considered the "bibles" that the exam was written around, I learned more sitting in my home office cracking the books than I did in any classroom setting as there were no constant questions being asked and no straying off topic.
    I know only what I need to know about the PLSS as I practice only in a Colonial state. That being said I am well versed in Colonial practices and law based on hard study and great mentors who taught me to apply the principles I had studied hard to learn.
    There are several good books out there that would probably provide better information than classroom study if you have the discipline to sit and study them in an undistracted area. I believe my thoughts on this are relevant to both land systems but each person is different in how they study and learn.
     
  13. Jeff S

    Jeff S Member

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    Ferris State University, Big Rapids, MI. Being in Michigan, the topic was certainly covered but no dedicated course per se. And no, it can't be mastered in a few days. 90% of it is easy, it's the 10% that gets surveyors in trouble.
     
    Joel East likes this.
  14. Joel East

    Joel East 1-Year Member

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    Ferris state in Michigan is where I earned my degree. It is a wonderful program with several courses that talk about the PLSS. No one class in particular, but it is a part of all the courses dealing with boundary law.
     
  15. Darryl Beard

    Darryl Beard 1-Year Member

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    I took both of these classes as electives for my BBA degree.
     
  16. headywest

    headywest 2-Year Member

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    Elgin has a book specific to the PLSS in Missouri and Arkansas. If you are surveying in those states it is a handy reference.
     
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  17. James Fleming

    James Fleming 7-Year Member

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    No surveying degree, but I did have nine credit hours of Shakespeare, which helps in identifying PLSS/Colonial threads which are "Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
     
    aliquot, Jp7191, RADAR and 1 other person like this.
  18. Mark Mayer

    Mark Mayer 7-Year Member

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    I wonder that any school would do anything other than administer the CFEDS training for the PLSS portion of its curriculum.
     
  19. Dan Dunn

    Dan Dunn 6-Year Member

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    Graduated from State University of New York College of Environmental Science & Forestry.

    I took a 3 credit course entitled "Land Survey Systems". The course used the text book titled "Land Survey Systems" by John G. McEntyre.

    The 1978 edition of the book had 7 chapters on the PLSS and 1 chapter on Metes and Bounds Systems.
     
  20. eapls2708

    eapls2708 7-Year Member

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    1st half of my degree was at Ferris. Like others said, I don't recall any class completely devoted to PLSS, but it was an integral part of every class that dealt with boundaries.

    2nd half of my degree was at OIT. I went in as a Jr, but it if I recall correctly, there was a sophomore level class devoted to the PLSS. I'd have to double check that in light of the other OIT folks here not remembering the existence of such a class when they were there. I was there 93-95.

    I like Mark Mayer's idea that the degree programs should simply incorporate the CFedS program into their curriculum. If you are looking for an educational requirement for enforcement orders by requiring something more specific than the boilerplate "college level course in surveying", first, I think that's great and long overdue. Second, I think that requiring the CFedS training where the violations stem from a misunderstanding of PLSS principles would be, by far the best option.
     
    Jered McGrath PLS likes this.

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