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Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Undergraduate Certificate

Saint Louis University's undergraduate certificate program in geographic information systems (GIS) focuses on current issues, including environmental quality, climate change, sustainability of natural and nonrenewable resources, and the impact of human activities on the environment.

The undergraduate certificate program in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) focuses on current issues, including environmental quality, climate change, sustainability of natural and nonrenewable resources, and the impact of human activities on the environment.

Courses cover the latest image processing techniques for optical, thermal, RADAR, LiDAR remote sensing. You’ll also explore geospatial methods and principles of spatial analysis, database design, cartographic representation, open source programming and automation, machine learning, computer vision, management and data-mining with integration of GIS, remote sensing and GPS.

Theory and lectures are supplemented with hands-on projects involving risk assessment and mitigation, environmental modeling, resources exploration, sustainable development, natural resource management and transportation, subterranean mapping, and forest fire management.

Students typically complete the program in 18 months to two years.

Curriculum and Program Details

You will complete nine credit hours of required courses:

  • GIS 4010: Introduction to GIS (fall only)
  • GIS 4040: Introduction to Remote Sensing (fall only)
  • GIS 4020: Intermediate GIS (spring only)

Then, in consultation with your adviser, you’ll select three to six credit hours of electives to complete the certificate. Students with previous GIS experience or coursework may be allowed to take an advanced elective in place of the required Introduction to GIS course.

Approved electives:

  • GIS 4080: Digital Cartography and Geovisualization
  • GIS 4090: Introduction to Programming for Remote Sensing and GIS
  • GIS 4091: Advanced Programming for GIS and Remote Sensing
  • GIS 4100: Microwave Remote Sensing: SAR Principles, Data Processing and Applications
  • GIS 4110: Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar
  • SOC 4670: Spatial Demography: Applied Statistics for Spatial Data
  • BIOL 4190: GIS in Biology

Note that not all courses are offered each semester or every year. Students should check Banner Self-Service for course scheduling and availability.

Internships and Careers

According to the Geospatial Information and Technology Association, employment in this field is growing at an annual rate of almost 35 percent, with the commercial subsection of the market expanding by 100 percent each year.

View the Gainful Employment Disclosure

  • Greg Brunner, M.Sc.
  • Jack Fishman, Ph.D.
  • Jason Knouft, Ph.D.
  • Daniel M. Hanes, Ph.D.
  • Elizabeth A. Hasenmueller, Ph.D.
  • Sidike Paheding, Ph.D.
  • Zaitao Pan, Ph.D
  • Vasit Sagan, Ph.D. (Program Coordinator)
  • J.S. Onesimo Sandoval, Ph.D.
  • Ethan Shavers, Ph.D
Tuition and Fees

Saint Louis University takes pride in being one of Barron's Best Buys in College Education and Kiplinger's Best Values in Private Colleges.

For information regarding the upcoming academic year’s tuition rate, fees and financial aid, visit SLU Financial Services.

2018-2019 Tuition and Fees
Cost Calculator
Financial Aid

Program Highlights

Hands On Experience

Students enrolled in this certificate program enjoy:

  • A focus on advanced remote sensing, GIS and geospatial methods.
  • Use of the latest image processing techniques.
  • Coverage of diverse applications in various disciplines.
  • Training with industry-leading hardware and software systems (ArcGIS, ENVI+IDL, SARscape) and Open source platforms (e.g., QGIS, Boundless Desktop).
  • Late afternoon or evening classes that accommodate working professionals.
  • Instructors with advanced degrees who work and conduct research in the field.
  • State-of-the-art research labs equipped with modern computing, commercial and open source software tools, various remote sensing sensors, and manned and unmanned aircraft.

Applicant Criteria

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0

Applicants with GPA below the minimum GPA will be considered on a case-by-case basis. 

Students already enrolled in any undergraduate program at Saint Louis University do not need to reapply and should submit a Major Application. 

Other applicants must submit the following:

Applicant Requirements
GIS Certificate Enrollment Application
Professional goal statement (500 to 800 words)

Requirements for International Students

  • A completed Declaration of Financial Support packet with all accompanying documents
  • TOEFL score (minimum: 80) or IELTS score (minimum: 6.5)
  • Applicants may be asked to schedule an online interview before final acceptance.

Application Deadlines

The final deadline for fall admittance is May 1 for international students and July 1 for domestic students.

Program Coordinator 
Dr. Vasit Sagan 
Associate Professor of GIScience 
Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences 
Saint Louis University