Geographic Information Systems - Online and Distance Education

Geographic Information Systems

 

Courses

The Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Systems curriculum is designed to provide a well-rounded education to students seeking to increase their basic GIS credentials. To earn a certificate, you are required to complete 12 credit hours (2 required courses and then your choice of electives).

Students who wish to substitute a different 500/600 level GIS course for one of those listed below should consult with the program, otherwise the course may not count towards the Certificate. No transfer credit is allowed for courses taken outside NC State.

Students that took GIS 410 as an undergraduate at NC State cannot transfer those hours into the Certificate but may be able to waive GIS 510 and substitute another course to meet the 12 credit hour requirement.  Students in this situation should consult with the program.

For those interested in taking individual courses without enrolling in a degree or certificate program, you must first enroll as a Non-Degree Studies (NDS) Student.

Core Required Courses (6 credits)

GIS 510 - Fundamentals of Geospatial Information Science and Technology

Units: 3

This course provides an advanced overview of how geographic information systems [GIS] facilitate data analysis and communication to address common geographic problems. Students improve spatial reasoning and problem definition expertise while emphasizing geographic data models and structures, data manipulation and storage, customization through programming, and the integration of geospatial analysis and modeling into project-based problem solving applicable to a variety of disciplines. Skilled application of both desktop and cloud-based GIS software supports these areas. Extensive independent learning and computer experiences include virtual laboratory sessions, alongside optional online or in-person weekly help sessions to facilitate student learning.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 520 - Spatial Problem Solving

Units: 3

Focus on spatial problem solving from a geographic information perspective. Students learn to solve spatial problems through advanced analysis using geospatial technologies, learn to integrate and analyze spatial data in various formats, and explore methods for displaying geographic data analysis results to guide decision making. All course materials are delivered through the Internet, with optional weekly on-campus and synchronous online help sessions.

Offered in Fall Spring Summer

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

Electives (6 credits)

GIS 501 - Geospatial Professionalism

Units: 2

Students will examine a variety of topics critical to successful navigation of the geospatial profession, with an emphasis on map communication and presentation, interpreting geospatial research, the ethical, legal, and social implications [ELSI] of using spatial data, metadata concepts, and linking results to policy actions. Students will engage in several writing, presentation, and interpretation exercises.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 512 - Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing

Units: 3

Principles and hands-on techniques for processing and analyzing remotely sensed data for natural resource applications. Topics include review of the electromagnetic spectrum, pre-processing [georectification, enhancements and transformations], processing [visual interpretation, indices, supervised and unsupervised classification] and post-processing [masking, change analysis and accuracy assessment] of digital image data. This course will provide students with fundamental concepts and skills needed to pursue further studies in digital processing of remotely sensed data.

Offered in Fall and Spring

TERM: Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 515 - Cartographic Design

Units: 2

Principles of cartographic design and how to apply them to produce high-quality geographic information system [GIS] based maps. Successful students will acquire an understanding of map design and experience applying it with GIS software. Students produce project maps in both print and web media.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 521 - Surface Water Hydrology with GIS

Units: 3

The application of geographic information systems [GIS] to surface water modeling including stream and watershed delineations, regulatory wetlands jurisdiction determinations, and flood mapping. In addition students will develop spatial computation methods to support hydrological analysis in land use planning, landscape management, and engineering assessments.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Fall Term

GIS 530 - Spatial Data Foundations

Units: 3

This course focuses on geospatial information systems from a mathematical and information science perspective. We discuss theoretical frameworks for conceptualizing geographic data, including levels of measurement, data control, and the vector data and raster data paradigms. Then we discuss the geometric underpinnings of geospatial systems: representing data with geographic elements, spatial referencing systems, and projection. Next, we explore map-related topology and computational geometry concepts. Finally, we survey the algorithms for core spatial manipulations, such as interpolation and polygon operations.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 535 - Web and Mobile GIS Protocols

Units: 3

This course examines the design, development and deployment of web and mobile geospatial applications using internet and web-based protocols. Throughout the course, students will develop and deploy web and mobile GIS maps and applications relevant to their career using on-premises hosted infrastructure. Course participants will be required to complete assignments with data relevant to their interests. Additionally, students will search for and examine scientific and popular literature to understand how the course concepts are being employed and to foster ideas and discussion.

Offered in Fall Only

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2020 Fall Term

GIS 582 - Geospatial Modeling

Units: 3

The course provides foundations in methods for GIS-based surface analysis and modeling. The topics include proximity analysis with cost surfaces and least cost paths, multivariate spatial interpolation and 3D surface visualization. Special focus is on terrain modeling, geomorphometry, solar irradiation, visibility, and watershed analysis. Students are also introduced to the basic concepts of landscape process modeling with GIS and to the principles of open source GIS. Introductory level knowledge of GIS or surveying/ geomatics principles is required.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term

GIS 609 - Geospatial Forum

Units: 1

The Geospatial Forum brings together researchers, educators, practitioners, and students of the geospatial sciences in an exciting, weekly series of lively presentations and facilitated discussions centered upon frontiers in geospatial analytics and geospatial solutions to complex challenges. Live discussions are recorded and made available online for students.

Offered in Fall and Spring

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2020 Spring Term 2020 Fall Term


GIS Special Topics Courses: Special topics courses will be labeled GIS 595 or GIS 610 and cover topics that are not part of our regular curriculum. These offerings change each semester and there may be multiple offerings in a given semester.

Some of our other advanced GIS courses (such as GIS 540, GIS 550) are restricted to Masters students as a required part of their curriculum. For any restricted course, if there is space, exceptions may be considered on a case-by-case evaluation by contacting the instructor.

Other Electives

There are a number of electives outside of GIS that many of our students have also found useful.  Some of these are listed below.  Students should consult the course catalog for the most up to date course descriptions and semester offerings.  For courses not listed here, students should consult with the program for approval prior to enrolling in the course.

Engineering, Biological, and Agricultural Electives

  • BAE 535 Precision Agriculture Technology
  • BAE 536 GIS Applications for Precision Agriculture

Forestry and Environmental Resources Electives

  • Check back soon!

Marine, Earth, and Atmospheric Science Electives

  • MEA 511 Introduction to Meteorological Remote Sensing
  • MEA Special Topics

Soil Science Electives

  • SSC 540 GIS in Soil Science and Agriculture
  • SSC 545 Remote Sensing Applications in Soil Science and Agriculture

Statistics Electives

  • ST 507 Statistics for Behavioral Science I
  • ST 508 Statistics for Behavioral Science II
  • ST 511 Experimental Statistics for Biological Science I
  • ST 512 Experimental Statistics for Biological Science II
  • ST 533 Applied Spatial Statistics
  • Other 500-level ST courses