GIST (Geographic Information Science & Technology) Certificate

Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIST) Certificate Program for Undergraduates

This certificate program will provide a solid foundation and a useful credential in the field of geospatial technologies (Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing (RS), and computer mapping (CM)) for undergraduate and non‐degree students. GIS are computer systems for integrating and analyzing spatial data. RS uses satellite or airborne sensors to acquire spatial information, particularly for earth observation. Computer mapping has largely replaced traditional cartography for presenting data and analyses in maps. The GIST certificate program will provide students with a background in the science, techniques, and application of these geographical methods and techniques that will enable them to embark on public and private sector careers or to undertake further studies in geography and other fields.

The program requires 5 courses (~17 credits total), including 3 foundation courses and 2 advanced‐level elective course. It will be possible for students to complete the certificate in a single year of focused study, although most students will likely integrate GIST courses into their degree program studies and complete the GIST courses over two or more years.

  1. Three required foundation courses (11 total credits)
    a. Foundation in Cartography/Mapping

GEOGRAPH323 Computer Mapping (Spring & Fall, 3cr)

b. Foundation in GIS

The GIS courses that can be used to fulfill the introductory course requirement are
GEOGRAPH397G/ NRC585 Introduction to GIS (Spring & Fall, 4cr)
CEE597G: Geographic Information Systems for Engineers
Foundation in GIS

RP625: Introduction to GIS for Planning

c. Foundation in Remote Sensing

GEOGRAPH426 Remote Sensing and Image Interpretation (Fall, 4 cr)

  1. Two advanced required courses (6 total credits) Students choose two courses from the following courses:

GEOGRAPH 468 GIS and Spatial Analysis


GEOGRAPH 626 Advanced Remote Sensing

GEOGRAPH593ARS Aquatic Remote Sensing

GEOGRAPH 560 Geomorphology

GEOGRAPH 494GISP Advanced Practicum in GIS*

* This is an independent study (3 cr) that involves a GIST project in the context of a course involving spatial thinking/problem solving to fulfill this requirement, upon approval by program advisor.

Advanced courses might not be offered every year. Meanwhile, a few new GIS related courses are planned to be offered as soon as Fall 2017, including Spatial Database Management. Please consult the advisor for updates.

Program Advisor: Prof. Qian Yu

Office: 267 Morrill Science Center IV South Email: