Course Delivery

100% Online

Total Credits

30

Approximate Cost per Credit

$695 in state
$705 out of state

Time to Completion

Graduate in as few as 24 months

Program Overview

Become a trusted expert and catalyst for change. In Kent State’s online Master of Geographic Information Science program, you’ll build essential technical, analytical and programming knowledge, customizing your coursework with electives in healthcare, cyber technologies and environmental analysis. With your degree, you’ll be equipped to improve the global systems that sustain individuals, families and entire communities.

As part of this program, you'll have the opportunity to design and manage geographic information technologies to develop and improve the tools and systems we rely on every day.

Kent State’s online Master of Geographic Information Science program is designed for busy working professionals and students seeking graduate education.
 

Military Friendly School `'21-22

Program Details

  • 30 credits, consisting of four core courses, four electives and a practicum
  • 7-week-long courses, with two courses taken sequentially each semester
  • To keep class sizes small and maximize collaboration, we offer multiple sections of each course
  • Graduate in as few as five semesters or 24 months

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Move Forward

Once you are admitted to the program, your Admissions Advisor will craft your personalized degree plan, giving you a clear course sequence and path to graduation.

Meet the Faculty

Master of Geographic Information Science

Kent State University’s online Master of Geographic Information Science (MGISc) program helps provide you with the necessary expertise to make significant impacts on major global challenges such as health, water resources and climate change.

Master’s Program Outcomes

Students in the online MGISc program will master a wide-ranging set of technical skills and professional knowledge crucial for the successful development and management of rapidly evolving geographic information technologies. Between the required courses and the electives that comprise the degree, you’ll graduate with new skills in many of these areas, among others:

  • Advanced theories and techniques for handling geographic information systems
  • Principles of map design and the art of map construction
  • Algorithms and tools used in computer science
  • Emerging media and technology industries; basic programming concepts
  • Urban and economic applications and analyses of spatial data
  • The use of GISc in hazard research and management
  • Essential spatiotemporal thinking and technical skills
  • The geospatial methods and approaches used to understand and combat disease
  • Essential concepts and skills needed to create and develop a geodatabase
  • The basic principles of environmental remote sensing

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Career Outcomes with a Master of Geographic Information Science

The Master of Geographic Information Science degree prepares graduates for analytical and managerial positions that utilize geospatial technologies.

Our graduates thrive in vital industries, including:

  • Healthcare
  • Emergency management
  • Logistics
  • Consulting

Learn more about potential careers in geographic information science.

Admissions Requirements

  • Completed online application
  • Complete bachelor’s degree, with a GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale), from an accredited university
  • Three letters of recommendation from professors and/or employers
  • Application fee: $45
  • Official transcripts
  • Goal statement
  • Resume/CV
  • No GRE required for admission

The application process is simple and we’re here to guide you through it.

Our Admissions Advisors are available to answer your questions regarding admissions requirements for the program. If you have questions, please email us at onlinedegrees@kent.edu or call us toll-free at +1 844-234-4073.

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Important Dates

Nov
12
Priority Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
Jan
4
Application Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
Jan
17
First Day of Class
Spring 2022 Semester

Application Resources

Application Checklist Thumbnail

Our step-by-step application checklist will help ensure the success of your application submission.

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Application FAQs

Each applicant is required to create an account in the online application system, which allows people to save their applications and track the progress of materials submitted via the application system.

I am a U.S. citizen. Where should I send my application materials?

If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent U.S. resident, all required application materials should be sent to the Division of Graduate Studies at gradapps@kent.edu or by mail to:

Division of Graduate Studies
Kent State University
650 Hilltop Drive
Kent, OH 44242

Please be sure to include your full name and Kent State ID (9-digit number starting with 8) on all submitted documents. For questions, contact Graduate Admissions at +1 330-672-2661 or gradapps@kent.edu.

I am not a U.S. citizen. Where should I send my application materials?

If you are not a U.S. citizen or permanent U.S. resident, all required documents should be submitted to the Office of Global Education at intladm@kent.edu or by mail to:

Office of Global Education
Kent State University
106 Van Campen Hall
625 Loop Rd.
Kent, OH 44242
USA

For questions, contact International Admissions at +1 330-672-7970 or intladm@kent.edu.

Courses

The Master of Geographic Information Science degree is comprised of three major components:

  • Four core courses (12 credits each)
  • Four elective courses (minimum 12 credits)
  • One practicum (6 credits)

Core Courses and Practicum

GEOG 59070 Geographic Information Science (3 Credits)

Introduction to theories and methods for geographic data processing, including data capture and input, data storage and management, and data analysis and displays. Emphasis is on laboratory exercises using GIS software packages for real-world applications.

GEOG 59080 Advanced Geographic Information Science (3 Credits)

Prerequisite: GEOG 49070 or 59070.

Advanced theories and techniques for handling geographic information systems, including 2D and 3D processing of geographic information, detection and analysis of geographic patterns, 2D and 3D mapping of geographic information, modeling of geographic processes and an overview of GIS programming tools.

GEOG 69164 Cartographic Design (3 Credits)

Introduces students to the principles of map design and the art of map construction. Students will become familiar with the cartographic process, especially as they apply basic mapping concepts such as scale, projections, typography, generalization, symbols, color scheme and classification to the design and production of thematic maps. Students will also learn how to describe and manipulate spatial data and how to select an appropriate map type for a given task and data set. This course builds on students’ experiences with GIS to focus on the design needed to disseminate information beyond users of the software and produce effective print and web maps. Class exercises will provide hands-on experience in using GIS and graphic software packages. Principles and experiences learned in class will equip students with the fundamental skills necessary to effectively communicate graphic information through maps.

GEOG 69231 Environmental Remote Sensing (3 Credits)

Introduction to the basic principles of environmental remote sensing, including the electromagnetic spectrum, spectral properties of Earth objects, aerial photograph analysis and interpretation, and satellite image analysis and interpretation. Special focus will be on environmental applications, especially as they pertain to understanding vegetation, water and land use mapping and impacts.

GEOG 69392 Practicum in Geographic Information Science (6 Credits)

Prerequisites: GEOG 59070, GEOG 59080, GEOG 69164 and two additional graduate-level GEOG courses.

Culminating experience for students in the MGISc program. It will be taken in place of two carousel specialist courses on the schedule for the student’s final semester. It is designed to provide practical experience in the application of MGISc course content in real-world professional settings. Students will select a professional project in consultation with their employers and program faculty and then will design, implement and report on their activities in a culminating professional paper.

Elective Courses

Additional course options may be available at the department’s discretion.

CS 61002 Algorithms and Programming I (4 Credits)

An introduction to the algorithms and tools used in computer science; includes programming in a high-level language.

CS 61003 Algorithms and Programming II (4 Credits)

Further exploration into the tools used in computer science.

EMAT 64210 Data Science (3 Credits)

Through this course students will explore the emerging media and technology industries, receive an introduction to basic programming concepts, and develop their own emerging media project plan. Additionally, students will learn about the impact of emerging media and technology on culture and society. Topics include an introduction to ethical technology design, emerging media and globalization, and how technology relates to relationship and identity formation and maintenance.

GEOG 59072 GIS and Health (3 Credits)

Geographic theory and methods serve as the connection among disparate disciplines focused on how and why “health” varies between regions, cities and neighborhoods. Students examine how geospatial technologies, especially GIS, have become an important health analysis tool.

GEOG 59075 Urban and Economic GIS (3 Credits)

Prerequisites: GEOG 49070 or 59070

Urban and economic applications and analyses of spatial data, especially theoretical and conceptual issues, including the possibilities and concerns associated with GIS, ethical considerations, and the various forms of data collection, visualization, analysis and dissemination.

GEOG 59076 Spatial Programming (3 Credits)

Prerequisite: GEOG 59070

Examination of the design, development and use of geographic information technologies with computer programming to model, process and visualize geographic phenomena.

GEOG 59078 Geographic Information Science and Environmental Hazards (3 Credits)

The study and management of natural hazards are inherently reliant on both physical and human processes and spatial patterns. Given the many variables involved and the variety of scales at which they operate, use of geographic information science (GIS) has become standard practice in research on hazards and in their management by government agencies at all levels. Students are exposed to a wide array of spatial data that is used in these activities, as well as standard mapping and spatial analysis procedures and forms of data dissemination.

GEOG 69004 Quantitative Methods in Geography (3 Credits)

Explores the methods and applications of some of the most common statistics found in geographic work. It explores probability theory, spatial statistics, estimation procedures, hypothesis testing, spatial sampling, methods of areal association, correlation and regression analysis, and principal components analysis. Theory and execution of these methods are equally emphasized, and applications to geographic problems are examined within each theme.

GEOG 69007 Spatiotemporal Analytics (3 Credits)

Prerequisite: GEOG 59070

Equips students with essential spatiotemporal thinking and technical skills in mapping, analyzing, visualizing, communicating and simulating the spatiotemporal data. ArcGIS and free packages in R and Netlogo will be used in the instruction.

GEOG 69073 Geographic Information Science: Global Health (3 Credits)

Emerging and re-emerging diseases in non-developed countries pose one of the greatest health challenges of current times. Geospatial approaches often provide one of the only information sources in data poor and challenging environments. This course will expose students to these health issues and disease environments through varied case studies, while simultaneously highlighting the geospatial methods and approaches used to understand and combat disease.

GEOG 69074 Geographic Information Science: Spatial Analysis for Health Geography (3 Credits)

Prerequisites: GEOG 59070 or GEOG 59072

Spatial analysis is used to verify patterns and associations in health data maps. These results can then be used to further hone the scientific question or help design an intervention strategy. This course will introduce spatial analytical approaches used by health researchers and practitioners in the exploratory investigation of health data. Students will also be exposed to new mobile technologies that can be used to enrich more traditional spatial data sources.

GEOG 69079 Environmental Geographic Information Science (3 Credits)

Prerequisite: GEOG 59070

GPS and environmental spatial data are commonly used in a variety of management and assessment plans in fields related to environmental science to achieve effective decision-making and environmental resource management. This course will focus on techniques used to process, manage, visualize and analyze environmental data using GIS. Students will learn how to collect and process GPS and online sources of geospatial data and how to employ techniques such as suitability modeling, measuring distributions and calculating landscape metrics.

GEOG 69082 Cyber GIS (3 Credits)

Explores cyberinfrastructure-enabled geographic information systems (i.e. cyber GIS) and related technologies, including a broad introduction to the use, design and development of cyberinfrastructure, spatial data infrastructures, geographic information services and web-enabled mapping technologies. Situates cyber GIS in the broader context of geographic information science, focusing on how synthesizing computational thinking and spatial thinking influence methodological approaches.

GEOG 69083 Geodatabases (3 Credits)

Prerequisite: GEOG 59070

Essential concepts and skills needed to efficiently create a geodatabase, add data to it and realistically model the real-world spatial relationships inherent to the data. Students will learn about geodatabase features that help ensure data integrity over time and about storing and managing geographic data.

GEOG 69231 Environmental Remote Setting (3 Credits)

Introduction to the basic principles of environmental remote sensing, including the electromagnetic spectrum, spectral properties of Earth objects, aerial photograph analysis and interpretation and satellite image analysis and interpretation. Special focus will be on environmental applications, especially as they pertain to understanding vegetation, water, and land use mapping and impacts.

Technology Requirements

Courses are delivered through our course management system, Blackboard Learn. Course content consists of text, narrated PowerPoint presentations, video and audio, live chats, discussion groups, and other learning enhancements.

To participate in this online program, you will need a computer and broadband Internet connection. Your program may have further requirements that include the ability to record video and audio. If you have questions regarding technology requirements for the program, please contact your Admissions Advisor at onlinedegrees@kent.edu or toll-free at +1 844-234-4073.

Meet the Faculty

Tuition and Financial Aid

Ohio ResidentsOut of State
Per Credit HourApproximate Program CostPer Credit HourApproximate Program Cost
$695$20,850$705$21,150

An additional distance learning fee for all students enrolled in a distance learning course is $12 per credit hour. Program tuition and costs are estimated and subject to change. For comprehensive tuition information, please refer to the tuition rates posted on the Bursar’s website.

We recognize that pursuing a graduate degree is a significant investment. Your Admissions Advisor can answer your questions on program costs, discuss how a Kent State degree compares to others and connect you with financial aid representatives when you are ready to discuss your financial options.

Please contact an Admissions Advisor for more information on tuition and fees either by email at onlinedegrees@kent.edu or toll-free at +1 844‑234‑4073.

Schedule a Call

Download Application Checklist

Immersive Online Curriculum

Designed for busy working professionals and students seeking to expand their career options.

Multi-Disciplinary Faculty

Study with experts: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) grant winners and veterans of diverse fields within GISc.

GISc Career Potential

Gain expertise in applying GISc methods and functions in varied areas, from real estate and healthcare to disaster relief and finance.
Admissions and Application Deadlines
Nov
12
Priority Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
Jan
4
Final Deadline
Spring 2022 Semester
Jan
17
First Day of Class
Spring 2022 Semester