Graduate GIS Certificate

Geographic information systems (GIS) consist of computer hardware, software, data, and people that are used to capture, manage, analyze, display, and distribute all forms of geographically referenced information. Effective use of GIS has evolved into a requisite skill in most academic research, as well as for agencies in both the public and private sectors. Graduate students from such varied disciplines as geography, atmospheric science, biology, engineering, economics, urban planning, landscape architecture, and sociology benefit from applying GIS and related technologies such as global positioning systems (GPS), remote sensing, spatial statistics, and computer programming to input, analyze, model, and display (map) location-based data. As such, it has found wide applications in the sciences and engineering, as well as in business, government, military, and consumer areas.

The certificate program is designed to provide graduate students with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in the rapidly expanding field of GIScience or apply GIScience concepts in their own field of study. The graduate certificate program complements the existing M.A., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees and builds upon the existing graduate concentrations in GIScience within the department.

The director of the certificate program, Professor Xingong Li, will be available to meet with each student and design a curriculum that best meets the student’s needs. Each student will have a personalized plan depending on their interests and, if applicable, current enrollment in a graduate program. All prospective students must complete the online application for the GIScience Graduate Certificate Program, including the statement of interest, found at Graduate Admissions.

Application requirements for those currently enrolled at KU:

  1. All current graduate students entering the certificate program must speak with their academic advisor before entering the certificate program.
  2. Complete the online application for the GIScience Graduate Certificate Program and include a statement of interest. The application can be found at Graduate Admissions
  3. Submit a letter of support from your graduate program.
  4. Submit your current Degree Progress Report (DPR) if applicable.
  5. A graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher is required if currently enrolled in a graduate program.

Application requirements for those not currently enrolled at KU:

  1. Complete the online application for the GIScience Graduate Certificate Program and include a statement of interest. The application can be found at Graduate Admissions. You must also pay the associated $30 fee.
  2. Submit a copy of official transcripts from all previous post-secondary educational institutions.
  3. Include a letter of recommendation from persons familiar with their academic work or potential for graduate school

Please see the policy on Graduate Certificate Programs - Eligibility and Admission Criteria for more information on minimum requirements for graduate certificate admission.

A total of 12 credit hours are required to earn the certificate. Only one course outside of the Department of Geography and Atmospheric Science may be included in these 12 credit hours. Current course requirements can be viewed in the KU online catalogue.