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Geography (M.S.) - Geographic Information Sciences Specialization

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Mapping the World

Geography is an exciting field that recognizes the complex relationships and linkages of human and natural systems; geography is the science of place. As such, geographers study and analyze many of today’s pressing issues, which range from climate change, human modification of the Earth’s systems, environmental hazards, resource assessment and land use to population distributions, urbanization, cultural adaption, political organization of space and globalization. Geographers’ tools, skill sets, and techniques, which include computer cartography, remote sensing, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS), are recognized increasingly as essential for solving many contemporary questions and are not only being adopted by businesses and governmental agencies but also by wider society. More people are recognizing that geography is fundamental to understanding our world and solving many of the problems that confront us.

The Department of Geography and Geospatial Sciences offers graduate students the opportunity to earn a Master of Science degree. The curriculum, organized through formal courses, seminars, internship experiences and supervised research, is designed to prepare students for positions in such professional areas as planning, remote sensing, geographic information sciences, government service, research, business and teaching. The program also is designed to provide students with the education needed to pursue further graduate study. Students seeking this degree are expected to select courses that will provide a sound foundation in geography (philosophical, physical and human and research techniques) supported, if appropriate, by courses outside the department. Students may also seek out opportunities such as the cooperative program with the EROS Data Center and/or internships, generally available with planning districts, governmental agencies, business and industry.

Is it for you?

This program will be a good fit if you:

  • Have experience using geospatial information technologies.
  • Want to pursue a management-level policy, planning or research-oriented position in geographic information science.
  • Want to lead research in the field.
  • Are interested in geography and related disciplines like natural resource management, geology, engineering, planning and business marketing.

Career Opportunities

  • Geographic information consultant
  • Government agency administrator
  • Urban planner
  • Remote sensing specialist
  • GIS specialist
  • Land and water management
  • Professor/teacher