Major ID: 385A
Program Start Dates: Fall, Spring, Summer - only General Education courses & GISC 1785
GIS is an acronym for Geographic Information Science. The GIS Associate of Applied Science degree will prepare students for entry level positions in various industries that require geospatial skills and thinking or for transitioning to four-year baccalaureate programs. Students completing this degree will be able to create and import digital special data representing realworld features from the surface of the Earth with the goal of viewing, manipulating, and analyzing the data to be distributed and used in decision making.
Duties for many positions requiring GIS skills typically involve a combination of outside field work and indoor computer work. While outside, raw spatial data is often collected with GPS devices for a variety of features. Some examples include the location of trees, fountains, utility poles, underground pipelines, soil sample sites, endangered species, and more. The working environment may be in a dense urban area or remote national park, depending on the employer. While inside, digital special data are imported from your GPS devices into a computer where the data is assessed for quality and revised/ manipulated if necessary. Remotely sensed data from various sensors and online archives may also be used to generate additional information. GIS employees typically coordinate with other experts (e.g. geologists, business operations specialists, hydrologists, farmers, and urban planners) to discuss the scientific and managerial implications of their work.
There are abundant opportunities for employment as a GIS Analyst, GIS Technician, or GIS Specialist in a wide variety of businesses, universities, government agencies, and non-profit organizations. Employees with strong GIS skills are highly coveted in the oil and gas industry, biological and environmental sciences research, natural resource management, government agencies focus on mapping and analyzing infrastructure, intelligence collection by federal agencies, and various business groups. GIS professionals also have ample opportunity to advance into more highly-skilled positions or managerial and leadership positions.
- Graduates will possess fundamental and applied skills in GIS such as making maps, working with rasters and vectors, geometric accuracy, georeferenceing, map projections, spatial analysis, Boolean logic, scripting, remote sensing, air photo interpretation, etc.
- Graduates will develop a working knowledge of the most popular GIS software, ArcGIS from ESRI.
- Graduates will develop a working knowledge of GPS devices used by a multitude of businesses and government agencies.
Saint Paul College has transfer agreements & partnerships between many post-secondary institutions. For more information please go to saintpaul.edu/Transfer.