View Penn State information on COVID-19 >>
The 12-credit Geographic Information Science (GIS) certificate is aimed at students who wish to be current in geographical representation and geospatial analysis. Through courses for the GIS certificate, students will understand and know how to apply various GIS and geospatial analysis tools to represent, analyze, and advise on the geospatial dimensions of natural and social phenomena. Students will gain firsthand experience using the most up-to-date tools and techniques available in the field of GIS today. Areas of study include cartography, remote sensing, and geographic information systems.
Geographic Information Science (GIScience) is one of four key subdisciplines within Geography (along with human geography, physical geography, and environment-society geography). Its primary areas of study include cartography (map-making), remote sensing, and geographic information systems. Students who study GIScience learn how to use the latest tools and techniques to visually represent and analyze spatial data in order to understand and address real-world environmental and social problems. Applications of geographic information science range from emergency response to natural resource management to social policy analysis to location intelligence for business.
There are many potential careers for graduates with GIScience backgrounds. Students earning the Geographic Information Science certificate learn a wide-range of technological, research, and analytical skills that are highly valued by employers. GIS geography undergraduates find jobs in all levels of government, nonprofit organizations, and in industry. This is one of several geography-related certificates that students can use to tailor their educational experience in preparation for the job market.