Geographic Information Science and Technology - BS, Computation, Design and Analysis Track

The BS in Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIST) requires semester credit hours for completion in the Computation, Design and Analysis (CDA), Earth Systems Analysis (ESA) or the Human Systems and Society (HSS) tracks.

The Computation, Design and Analysis (CDA) track will attract students interested in the computational, analysis and software development aspects of GIST. This track is more computational and information technology centered and focuses on addressing technical issues, algorithm development and performance, and software tool development.

Students will receive a rigorous and modern-day education and training in GIST with application knowledge in physical and human geography. Employers require problem solvers, not button pushers, to address problems in various application domains. The BS in GIST is designed to:

  • Provide modern-day exposure to the rapidly changing field of GIST
  • Balance education and training with a focus on competency
  • Provide application and problem-solving experiences
  • Support student activities and research
  • Provide students with professional experience
  • Produce high-quality geographers with strong GIST knowledge and skills

Geospatial technology graduates are in extremely high demand and according to the US Department of Labor (USDL), one of the highest growth areas in the federal government, particularly in homeland security activities, as well as in energy, software and engineering firms, and biomedical and biohazard research, among many others. A 35% annual rate of growth in Geospatial Technology related degrees are projected by the United States Department of Labor. Specifically, students have employment opportunities with the following corporate and government entities:

  • Government agencies (federal, state, county and city): management and planning of urban infrastructure, inventory and assessment of natural resources including agriculture, forestry, and water resources.
  • Energy industry: assessing biofuel production, and identifying locations suitable for renewable energy resources and mineral exploration.
  • Health Science Industry: determine hotspots of health events and to explore for causative influences.
  • Military and intelligence community: numerous opportunities exist in military branches, and agencies such as CIA, NAS and other intelligence organizations.
  • Commercial industries: business analytics and marketing, as spatial information can be used to target marketing campaigns, and assess suitable sites to locate companies.
  • Geospatial Industries: Software development, geotechnical engineering, and technology development. 

Students select courses with the assistance of faculty advisors and academic advisor in an individualized advising system.

First Year
FallSemester Credit Hours
Communication 3
GEOG 203Planet Earth 3
GEOG 213Planet Earth Lab 1
MATH 141Finite Mathematics 3
Life and physical sciences 14
Select one from the following:
Introductory Biology I  
Fundamentals of Chemistry I
and Fundamentals of Chemistry Laboratory I
Principles of Geology  
College Physics  
Weather and Climate
and Weather and Climate Laboratory
 Term Semester Credit Hours14
GEOG 201Introduction to Human Geography 3
MATH 142Business Calculus 3
POLS 206American National Government 3
Communication 3
Life and physical sciences 14
Selct one of the following:
Introductory Biology II  
Fundamentals of Chemistry II
and Fundamentals of Chemistry Laboratory II
Historical Geology  
College Physics  
and Oceanography Laboratory
 Term Semester Credit Hours16
Second Year
GEOG 232Cartography and Visualization 3
Select one of the following: 4
Programming I  
Introduction to Computer Science Concepts and Programming  
POLS 207State and Local Government 3
American history 3
Social and behavioral sciences 3
 Term Semester Credit Hours16
Physical Geography 3
Select one of the following:
Global Climatic Regions  
Pattern and Process in Biogeography  
GEOG 352/GEOL 352GNSS in the Geosciences 3
STAT 303Statistical Methods 3
American history 3
Language, philosophy and culture 3
 Term Semester Credit Hours15
Third Year
GEOG 361Remote Sensing in Geosciences 4
GEOG 390Principles of Geographic Information Systems 4
GEOG 392GIS Programming 4
Creative arts 3
 Term Semester Credit Hours15
ESSM 459 or GEOG 391Programming for Spatial Data Applications or Geodatabases 3
GEOG 312Data Analysis in Geography 3
GEOG 475Advanced Topics in GIS (Geographic Information Systems) 4
Directed elective 24
 Term Semester Credit Hours14
Fourth Year
Human Geography 3
Select one of the following:
Economic Geography  
Introduction to Urban Geography  
Cultural Geography  
Directed elective 26
Track elective 36
Select from the following:
Introduction to Urban Geography  
Geography of Energy  
Resources and the Environment  
Pattern and Process in Biogeography  
Coastal Processes  
Interpretation of Aerial Photographs  
Spatial Thinking, Perception and Behavior  
Field Geography  
Digital Image Processing in the Geosciences  
Dynamic Modeling of Earth and Environmental Systems  
Terrain Analysis and Mapping  
Principles of Geocomputation  
 Term Semester Credit Hours15
GEOG 476GIS Practicum 3
GEOG 478WebGIS 4
Directed elective 28
 Term Semester Credit Hours15
 Total Semester Credit Hours: 120

 Department requires that you take two in the same discipline to meet this requirement.


 Courses to be approved by Advisor. AGSM 301AGSM 461/SPSC 461AGSM 475,BAEN 301, BAEN 302, CSCE 121, CSCE 221, CSCE 222/ECEN 222, CSCE 310, CSCE 314, CSCE 350/ECEN 350, CSCE 410, CSCE 411, CSCE 420, CSCE 431, CSCE 433, CSCE 435, CSCE 436 CSCE 441, CSCE 442, CSCE 464, CSCE 470, CVEN 302 CVEN 322, ECEN 447,ECEN 448 ENDG 407, ESSM 308ESSM 459, ESSM 464,GEOG 391 ISEN 416, ISEN 420, ISEN 424, ISEN 425, ISEN 430ISYS 250, ISYS 310, ISYS 315, ISYS 320, ISYS 325, ISYS 410, ISYS 415,ISYS 420, SCMT 336, SCMT 340, SCMT 345, SCMT 361, SCMT 465, SCMT 468, STAT 211, STAT 212, URPN 325, URPN 326,URPN 471, VIST 170, VIST 270, VIST 271.


Track electives comprise 6 hours of focused coursework. The track and specific courses within the track are to be chosen in consultation with the advisor and/or faculty mentor.

Two courses in the degree plan must be Writing Intensive courses designated by the department in the schedule of classes. Also, International and Cultural Diversity Electives (6 hours) must be incorporated into the degree.