What is the demand for Geographic Information Science (GISc) professionals?

surveyor on a hill, trees in the background

Careers in GIS are in demand more than ever. Equipped with data visualization and spatial analysis skills, GIS professionals qualify for occupations in countless fields.1

The need for GISc experts continues to grow with an expected seven percent increase in jobs from 2020 to 2030.2 GISc professionals with a master’s degree earn salaries, on average, 20 percent higher than those with a bachelor’s degree with the median annual wage for geoscientists coming in at $83,680 in May 2021.

What is Geographic Information Science?

Geographic Information Science, also known as GIScience or GISc, is the scientific study of the methods and techniques used to research, process, and analyze geographic or spatial data. This information forms the foundation for GIS, which are the software tools that are used to understand better ourselves and our world.3

Learn more about GISc.

The online master’s degree in Geographic Information Science and the online graduate certificate in Geographic Information Science at Kent State University prepares students with skills that extend beyond simply understanding software features or capabilities.

The Demand for Geographic Information Science (GISc) Professionals

Did you know?4

  • 5 million - US employees who rely on geospatial services to do their job regularly
  • $350 billion - The yearly global value of GIS and the related geospatial economy
  • $74,000 - The median salary for GIS professionals in the United States

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts that several GISc-related careers will see greater than average growth by 2029.5 These include:

  • Urban and regional planners at 11% growth
  • Environmental scientists, specialists, and protection technicians at 8% growth
  • Software developers at 22% growth
  • Database administrators at 10% growth

Popular GISc careers include:

    • Urban and regional planners develop plans and programs for land use and work with communities to accommodate a growing population and revitalize cities and towns
    • Environmental scientists use in-depth knowledge of natural sciences to protect human health and the environment, working with policymakers and industry
    • Geospatial information scientists research and develop geospatial technologies, with specializations in healthcare, urban planning, retail, agriculture, mining, or military intelligence
    • Geoscientists study the Earth’s structure, composition, and processes to understand the past better and find solutions for present and future challenges

    Getting an online master’s degree in Geographic Information Science (GISc)

    A master’s degree in geographic information science is the best way to acquire the skills necessary for a career as a geographic information scientist. In these programs, you will learn about cartography, geovisualization, programming, and data analysis to develop practical skills that will set you up for a successful career in GIS or GISc.

    Upon graduation, students will have an advanced understanding of theories and techniques for working with geographic information systems. They will also understand how to build and use maps and how to incorporate algorithms and software tools to analyze geospatial data.

    Getting an online certificate in Geographic Information Science (GISc)

    Kent State’s Online Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Science (GISc) offers a great way to grow skills within a shorter timeframe than a master’s degree. This can help gain a quicker entry into a GISc career.

    Online certificates provide the same quality and flexibility as online master’s programs and might take place in the same learning management system. Certificates typically focus more on the practical skills of a discipline, while a master’s will also give you time to dig into theory.

    Additionally, earning an online GISc certificate might be a great jump-start for earning your master’s in GISc later down the line. Many institutions allow you to apply the credits of a certificate to credits necessary to attain a Master of Science in the same discipline.

    Kent State University’s Online Master of Geographic Information Science (GISc)

    Kent State’s Online Master of Geographic Information Science (GISc) helps students develop a more robust understanding of how GISc functions across different sectors and have a positive impact on some of the greatest global challenges of our age, including climate change, and transportation, public health and more.

    The online graduate program in GISc is designed for busy working professionals and students seeking graduate education. With one of the lowest tuition rates in the nation and no GRE requirement or on-campus visits, students can invest in their education without the financial burden and advance their careers on their schedule.

    For more information on Kent State’s Online Master of Geographic Information Science (GISc), visit https://onlinedegrees.kent.edu/geography/geographic-information-science/.

    Kent State University’s Online Geographic Information Science (GISc) Graduate Certificate

    Kent State’s Online Geographic Information Science (GISc) Graduate Certificate combines the quality and flexibility of the Online Masters of Geographic Information Science degree with the agility of a short-term, targeted professional skills-development program. In just 15 courses that can be completed in as few as 12 months, you can prepare for analytical and managerial roles utilizing geospatial technologies.

    • Complete the Postbaccalaureate Certificate in as little as a year
    • Choose from two certificates: Environmental GISc or General GISc
    • 15 credits
    • No GRE requirement

    For more information on Kent State’s Online Geographic Information Science (GISc) Graduate Certificate, visit https://onlinedegrees.kent.edu/geography/geographic-information-science/certificate.

    1 Retrieved on August 1, 2022, from https://www.esri.com/en-us/what-is-gis/careers
    2 Retrieved on August 1, 2022, from www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/geoscientists.htm
    3 Retrieved on August 1, 2022, from https://onlinedegrees.kent.edu/geography/geographic-information-science/community/what-is-a-gisc-masters-degree
    4 Retrieved on August 1, 2022, from https://www.esri.com/en-us/what-is-gis/careers
    5 Retrieved on August 1, 2022, from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science

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