BS / MSGIS combined degree program

Geographic Information Science (GIScience) is the field of study that combines digital mapping, satellite remote sensing, GPS, cartography, and geospatial analysis. Graduates with skills in GIScience are in high demand. While entry level jobs in GIScience are attainable with a Bachelor’s degree, many analyst positions require Master’s level training. The combined BS/MSGIS allows students to get focused GIScience training and complete both their Bachelors and Masters degrees in just five years.

To enroll in the combined program, students must apply for admission into the MSGIS program by April 1 of their junior year. Notification of acceptance into the program will take place before May 1 of students’ junior year. Students must be enrolled as Geography majors at the time of applying for the BS/MSGIS degree option, and entering students must have at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA. 

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PROGRAM OF STUDY

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

Students must complete at least 122 credits for the BS in Geography. Course requirements are listed in the table below.

Required Courses: (Geography Core Requirements)

  • GEOG 1000 - Earth Environments and Global Change SF (3)
  • GEOG 1400 - Human Geography BF (3)
  • GEOG 3020 - Geographical Analysis QB/QI (4)
  • GEOG 3040 - Principles of Cartography (4)
  • GEOG 3140 - Introduction to GIS QI (4)

One of the following: (Upper division physical geography choice)

  • GEOG 3/5200 - Geomorphology: Mtns, Rivers, Deserts SF (4)
  • GEOG 3/5205 - Regional and Global Climates (3)
  • GEOG 3/5210 - Global Climate Change SF (3)
  • GEOG 3/5215 - Climate Change and Its Impacts (3)
  • GEOG 3/5290 - Water in Utah (3)
  • GEOG 3/5292 - Snow and Ice (3)
  • GEOG 3310 - Introduction to Natural Hazards SF (3)

One of the following: (Upper division human geography choice)

  • GEOG 3/5190 - Introduction to Medical Geography (3)
  • BFGEOG 3350- Resource Conservation & Environmental Mgmt. (3)
  • GEOG 3/5375 - Sustainable Transportation (3)
  • GEOG 3420 - Political Geography (3)
  • GEOG 3/5440 - Global Economic Geography BF/IR (3)
  • GEOG 3480 - Urban Geography BF (3)
  • GEOG 3620 - Geography of North America DV (3)

One of the following: (Geography CW choice)

  • GEOG 3/5270 - Biogeography: Global Patterns of Life SF/CW (4)
  • GEOG 3/5400 - Population Geography BF/CW (4)

GIS combined program required courses:

  • GEOG 1180 - Introduction to Geo-Programming (3)
  • GEOG 3110 - The Earth from Space: Remote Sensing of Environ. SF (3)
  • GEOG 5110 - Environmental Analysis Through Remote Sensing (3)
  • GEOG 5140 - Methods in Geographic Information Systems (4)
  • GEOG 5170 - GeoData Field Methods (3)

TOTAL COURSES (min. 13)

TOTAL RESIDENCY HRS. (18 credit hrs. at UofU Geog. Dept.)

ALLIED CREDIT REQUIREMENT:
12 credit hours of allied coursework are also required. These courses will generally be in the student’s interest/specialization area and can be done in any of the following departments: Atmospheric Sciences; Biology; City and Metropolitan Planning; Civil Engineering; Computer Science; Geology; Parks, Recreation and Tourism; Philosophy; or any department** in the College of Social and Behavioral Science. **(Aerospace Studies, Anthropology, Economics, Environmental and Sustainability Studies, Ethnic Studies, Family and Consumer Studies, Gender Studies, Health Society and Policy, Military Science, Naval Science, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology)


MSGIS REQUIREMENTS

Students must complete at least 30 credits for the MSGIS. Combined BS/MSGIS students must complete the required courses (listed below) plus a minimum of 6 credit hours of elective course work. All MSGIS students are required to assemble a portfolio as courses are completed which includes examples of work demonstrating mastery of the selected GIS skills. Students will present this portfolio project and answer questions from the Supervisory Committee during the final oral exam at the end of the program.

REQUIRED COURSES:

  • GEOG 6000-Spatial Statistics (4)
  • GEOG 6150-Spatial Data Design (4)
  • GEOG 6160-Spatial Modeling with GIS (4)
  • GEOG 6161-Capstone in GIS (3)
  • GEOG 6162-Project Management (3)
  • GEOG 6165-Web GIS (3)
  • GEOG 6180-Geo-processing with Python (3)

Sub Total 24

*ELECTIVE COURSES (select two from list)

  • GEOG 6010-Geocomputation (4)
  • GEOG 6020-Advanced Spatial Analysis (3)
  • GEOG 6120-Environmental Optics (3)
  • GEOG 6130-Advanced Remote Sensing (3)
  • GEOG 6190-GIS Environmental & Public Health (3)

*Students may take graduate seminars to fill this requirement

Sub Total 6 or 7

TOTAL 30 or 31

A grade point average of 3.0 or higher in graduate course work is required. No graded work below a "B-" is acceptable toward the degree. No course can be counted toward both degrees.The MSGIS degree cannot be awarded separately without satisfying all requirements for the BS degree. Courses taken for the graduate degree will not be eligible for graduate credit until the requirements for both degrees are satisfied.


Sample Schedule

Fall 1

  • SF GEOG 1000 3
  • GEOG 1010 1
  • WR WRTG 2010 3
  • **Allied credit 3
  • *ANY 3

Semester Total 16

Spring 1

  • GEOG 1400 3
  • QA MATH 1050 3
  • FF 3 AI 3
  • *ANY 6  

Semester Total 15

Fall 2

  • GEOG 3040 4
  • CW GEOG 3400 4 
  • **Allied credit 3
  • FF 3
  • *ANY 1

Semester Total 15

Spring 2

  • QB/QI GEOG 3020 4
  • GEOG Human choice 3
  • HF 3  
  • *ANY 5  

Semester Total 15

Fall 3

  • GEOG 1180 3 
  • SF GEOG 3110 3 
  • QI GEOG 3140 4
  • *ANY 5

Semester Total 15

Spring 3***

  • GEOG 5110 3
  • GEOG 5140 4  
  • GEOG 5170 3  
  • **Allied credit 3     
  • *ANY 3 

Semester Total 16

Fall 4

  • GEOG Physical choice 3 
  • GEOG 6000 4 
  • GEOG 6150 4 
  • *ANY 4 

Semester Total 15    

Spring 4

  • **Allied 3
  • GEOG MSGIS elective 3
  • GEOG 6160 4 
  • *ANY 5

Semester Total 15

Fall 5

  • GEOG 6162 3 
  •  GEOG 6165 3 
  • GEOG 6180 3
  • DV  3
  • *ANY 3   

Semester Total 15  

Spring 5

  • GEOG MSGIS elective 3
  • GEOG 6161 3HF 3
  • IR  3
  • *ANY upper division 3

Semester Total 15

DISCLAIMER: Students enrolled in the combined degree program must consult with the department advisor each semester prior to the add/drop deadline on the second Friday of the semester. Note: This is just a sample. Your academic record may fit into this program differently. Meet with your academic advisor to customize a program of study.

*ANY=prerequisites, free electives, recreation courses, 2nd major requirements, minor requirements, certificate requirements, 2nd emphasis requirements, UROP, study abroad, or internship credits

**Allied credit (12 hours minimum)=Courses in your Interest/specialization area from the following departements: Atmospheric Sciences, Biology, City and Metropolitan Planning, Civil Engineering, Computer Science, Geology, Parks/Recreation/Tourism, Philosophy, or any department in the College of Social and Behavioral Science (Aerospace Studies, Anthropology, Economics, Environmental and Sustainability Studies, Ethnic Studies Family and Consumer Stsudies, Gender Studies, Health/Society/Policy, Military Science, Naval Science, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology)

***Students must apply for admission to the MSGIS program by April 1st of their junior year and maintain a cum gpa 3.0.