Major in Geographic Information Science at UConn

What is GIS?

Geographic Information Science (GIScience) is the scientific discipline that conducts spatial analysis to examine economic, environmental, physical, and social phenomena. The study of spatial data structures and computational techniques to capture, represent, process, and analyze geographic information are essential to GIScience. GIScience overlaps with and draws from many research fields such as computer science, statistics, mathematics, and psychology, and contributes to progress in those fields. GIScience also supports research in many academic disciplines such as natural resource management, environmental science and engineering, geosciences, agriculture, marine sciences, sociology, history, public health, business, and anthropology.

Courses in GIScience enable students to develop capability in spatial thinking and gather in-depth knowledge in geospatial technology. Geospatial technology is a term used to describe the range of modern tools contributing to the geographic mapping and analysis of the Earth and human societies, e.g. geographic information systems (GISystems), remote sensing, the global positioning system (GPS), spatial statistics, web mapping and navigation technologies.

 

Potential Career Paths

The U.S. Department of Labor recognizes geotechnology as one of the three most progressive professions today, alongside nano technology and biotechnology. Graduates with GIS expertise are in extremely high demand. Potential career paths include:

  • Asset Management
  • Banking & Insurance
  • Land Use & Urban Planning
  • Environmental Science & Agriculture
  • Transportation & Utilities
  • Engineering & Construction
  • Defense & Military Applications

Major Requirements

Students can obtain a B.S. or B.A. degree.

  • The GIScience B.A. degree does not require students to take biology, chemistry, physics, or calculus, and focuses on classes related to spatial analysis of social issues.
  • The GIScience B.S. degree requires students to take biology, chemistry, physics and calculus and is intended as preparation for students pursuing a career in natural science or engineering with geospatial technology.

The major in GIScience requires at least 31 credits of 2000-level or higher courses in the Department of Geography. GIScience majors complete basic core courses before beginning advanced courses.

 

Recommended Preparation

Course Title Credits
   GEOG 1302    GIS Modeling of Environmental Change    4
   GEOG 2410    New Digital Worlds of GIS    3

Required Core Courses       (16 credits)

Course Title Credits
   GEOG 2500    Introduction to GIS    4
   GEOG 2505    Applications of GIS    4
   GEOG 3500Q    Geographic Data Analysis    4
   GEOG 3510    Cartographic Techniques    4
   GEOG 3530    Introduction to GeoComputing    3
   GEOG W    Any Course (2000 level or above)   1-3

GIS Electives       (9 credits)

Course Title Credits
   GEOG 2510    Visualizing Geographic Data    3
   GEOG 3110    Location Analysis    3
   GEOG 3500Q*    Geographic Data Analysis    4
   GEOG 3505    Remote Sensing of Marine Geography    3
   GEOG 3510    Cartographic Techniques    4
   GEOG 3512    Introduction to Spatial Data Science    3
   GEOG 4130    Geographical Analysis of Transportation    3
   GEOG 4230    GIS and Remote Sensing for Geoscience Applications    3
   GEOG 4515    Web GIS    3
   GEOG 4516    Fundamentals of Spatial Database Systems    3
   GEOG 4518    Mobile GIS    3

Human and Physical Geography Electives       (6 credits)

Course Title Credits
   GEOG 2000    Globalization    3
   GEOG 2100    Economic Geography    3
   GEOG 2200*    Introduction to Human Geography    3
   GEOG 2300    Introduction to Physical Geography    3
   GEOG 2310    National Parks Unearthed    3
   GEOG 2320    Climate Change: Current Geographic Issues    3
   GEOG 2400    Introduction to Sustainable Cities    3
   GEOG 3000    Race, Sex, Space, and Place    3
   GEOG 3200    Urban Geography    3
   GEOG 3310    Fluvial Geomorphology    3
   GEOG 3400    Climate and Weather    3
   GEOG 3410    Human Modifications of Natural Environments    3
   GEOG 3420    Field Methods in Physical Geography    3
   GEOG 4210    Urban and Regional Planning    3
   GEOG 4220    Population Geography    3
   GEOG 4300    Advanced Physical Geography    3

Related Courses       (12 credits)

12 credits of related coursework taken in other departments. At least three credits of related courses must be selected from the list of Remote Sensing courses. The following is a list of pre-approved related courses that may be relevant to the GIScience major. Other courses can be used with approval of a student’s Geography advisor.
     Remote Sensing: NRE 3535, 4535, 4545, 4575
     Computer Science and Engineering: CSE 2050, 2100, 2102, 2300, 2304, 2500, 3000, 3100, 3150; 3300, 3400, 3500
CE 2251, 2310, 2410, 2710
     Math and Statistics: MATH 2110Q, 2130Q, 2143Q, 2144Q, 2210Q, 2410Q, 2420Q, 3160, 3410, 3435, 3710
STAT 2215Q, 3025Q, 3115Q, 3375Q, 3445, 3515Q
     Social Science: ANTH 2510, 3003, 3090, 3503, 3512, 3513, 3514, 3515
INTD 3584, 3594
POLS 2062, 2072Q
SOCI 3201, 3211Q
URBN 2000, 2100, 2301Q, 2302, 2400, 3000, 3993, 3981/3991, 3998
COMM 2110, 2940, 3000Q, 3300
WGSS 2124, 2255, 2255W, 3255, 3255W, 3269
     Natural Science: GSCI 2500, 3230, 4050W, 4210, 4735
EEB 4100, 4230W
MARN 2060, 3000, 3014, 3030, 3812
     Economics: ECON 2201, 22022211Q, 2212Q, 2301, 2311Q, 2312, 2326, 2327, 3103, 3313, 3421, 3439

updated:  09-19-2019