Degree requirements

The degree program is offered with both Plan I (thesis) and Plan II (non-thesis) options. Students will work with their academic advisor and research mentor (Plan I) or advisor (Plan II) to devise a course of study that best serves their career objectives. Both require a minimum of 30 graduate credit hours.

Plan I, Thesis Option: Students selecting the Plan I option will conduct original research in some application of Geospatial Science. This option is designed for students aspiring to acquire research experience in a specific area. This degree will prepare the students for professional employment in a wide range of areas or provide them with the skills necessary to be competitive with requirements of doctoral programs. The requirements are as follows:

1. Two Required Core Courses (6 credits)
2. Minimum of four courses from Geospatial Core Electives (12 credits minimum)
3. Six credits, either from the Geospatial Core Electives or other courses on campus approved by the advisor
4. Thesis (6 credits)

Plan II, Non-Thesis Option: The non-thesis option is structured as a terminal degree intended for new or current professionals seeking to advance their careers in Geospatial Science. This option is ideal for seasoned GIS/remote sensing practitioners to update or increase their skills, or to recent graduates of technical GIS or undergraduate GIS programs. The requirements are as follows:

1. Two Required Core Courses (6 credits)
2. Minimum of four courses from Geospatial Core Electives (12 credits minimum)
3. Nine credits, either from the Geospatial Core Electives or other courses on campus approved by the advisor
4. Three credit independent research project (SEES 6900-Directed Research); or a three credit internship with an approved NGO, industry, or governmental agency partner (SEES 6890-Internship)
5. Take and pass a comprehensive exam in their final semester

Required Core Courses. These courses provide a broad introduction to the tools and basic programming skills utilized by GIS and remote sensing analysts.

SEES 5100: Geographic Information Systems – 3 credits
SEES 5400: Remote Sensing – 3 credits

Geospatial Core Electives. These courses emphasize a variety of skills such as the development and application of geospatial tools, programming, statistics, and modeling.

ENVS 5130: Applications in Environmental Geographic Information Systems – 3 credits
GEOG 5250: Applied GIS Human Dimensions – 3 credits
GEOL 6930: Advanced Field Geology – 6 credits
SEES 6400: Environmental Remote Sensing – 3 credits
SEES 6600: Spatial Modeling – 3 credits
SEES 6620: GIS Techniques and Applications – 3 credits