Geographic Information Science (GIS) Minor

The geographic information science (GIS) minor provides practical and in-demand geospatial technology skills that will be useful to students in many major areas.

The minor focuses on cutting-edge technologies and practices that are necessary to create and analyze geographic data for decision-making.

GIS skills are valuable in career fields as varied as fish and wildlife biology, archeology, agricultural engineering, transportation, and city planning.

High School Preparation

Students wishing to pursue the GIS minor will benefit from prior exposure to geography, mathematics, statistics, business, and computer science.

Enhance Your Experience 

The GIS minor is a good complement to major areas in mathematics, business, and the sciences.

Degree Requirements

A. All of the following

GIS305 GIS Methods (3 cr.)

This course introduces the concepts of spatial data creation, editing, and analysis using GIS software.  Emphasis is placed on spatial concepts and understanding and utilizing standard operation procedures.  Topics covered include coordinate systems, topological editing, metadata, overlay analysis, and cartography.  Technical proficiency is a primary objective of the course reinforced by significant practical exercises utilizing GIS software.

GIS308 Internet Mapping (3 cr.)

This course introduces students to effective use of the Internet as a medium to publish map data.  It examines the basic implementation details associated with serving spatial data and GIS capabilities over the Internet.  Students are introduced to Internet mapping software as well as the particulars of designing and operating an effective map publishing/customization environment.

GIS332 Programming Principles (3 cr.)

This course covers foundational programming skills.  Examples of programming topics covered included form controls, altering and enhancing properties at run time, variables, decision making, looping, and connecting Visual Basic applications to Microsoft Access databases.

GIS342 Database Design and Administration (3 cr.)

This course follows a logical progression through basic data and database concepts into design theories, creation, and implementation of an enterprise spatial database.  The course explores the role of various tabular structures, from simple flat files to the relational geodatabase.

GIS356 Spatial Data Methodology (3 cr.)

This field and laboratory course introduces methods basic to the collection of data in a manner suitable for spatial analysis.  Topics include basic orienteering, land navigation, total station and topographical surveying, use of global positioning systems (GPS) and mobile GPS, and preparation of data for conversion to a digital format.

GIS370 Advanced GIS and Image Analysis (3 cr.)

This course promotes exploration and utilization of advanced functionality of GIS technology.  Substantial effort is directed toward developing proficiency in understanding data at complex levels with an emphasis on advanced raster and spatial analysis.  The course covers advanced GIS analysis, image analysis techniques, and geospatial topic-specific areas of study.