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Geographic Information Systems Certificate

Geographic Information Systems Certificate at Harper College

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Program facts  Social Sciences icon

  • Credit hours: 18
  • Stackable to degree: No
  • Potential job outcomes: GIS analyst, cartographer, researcher

Get an overview of geographic information systems with this 18-credit-hour certificate program. Geospatial technology is a high-growth industry, and this program will teach you how to effectively apply Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) technologies and methodologies to various business and public sector domains.

You’ll receive hands-on experience in cartographic design, spatial analysis, database design and implementation. Additionally, you’ll learn how to use geographic computing devices and accessories. After graduation, you’ll be qualified to seek entry-level employment as an analyst or technician.

Take courses in business software packages, database systems, GIS and mapping principles, applications for GIS and more. All courses are taught by skilled instructors who are extremely knowledgeable in the GIS field.

Certificate program requirements

This 18 credit-hour certificate provides students with the skills and knowledge necessary to effectively apply Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and related technologies and methodologies in various business and public sector domains as a technician or analyst. This certificate provides course work and hands-on experience in cartographic design, spatial analysis, spatial database design, the fundamentals of remote sensing, as well as the use of geographic computing devices and accessories.


Number Course Title Credits
GEG 150 3

Description: Provides an introduction to geospatial technologies, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and Remote Sensing through hands-on computer based exercises. The essential principles of map use and design, and spatial analysis are also included in this course. Fundamental desktop computer skills assumed. IAI S4 905

GEG 151 3

Description: Introduces the concepts and problem solving capabilities of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Spatial data sourcing and management will be learned using information acquired in the field or from other sources. Spatial analysis concepts will be introduced through hands-on exercises using GIS software.

Prerequisite: GEG 150 with a grade of C or better.

GEG 152 3

Description: Continues GEG 151. Emphasizes the practical application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology to solve problems and answer questions. Increases level of proficiency using GIS and performing spatial analysis of data. Introduces GIS operational and management issues.

Prerequisite: GEG 151 with a grade of C or better.

GEG 153 3

Description: Consolidates the concepts and techniques acquired through prior coursework within the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) certificate. Students will analyze case studies, understand GIS as a professional field, and apply GIS methods and workflows in classroom projects.

Prerequisite: GEG 152 with a grade of C or better.

GEG 154 3

Description: Provides an introduction to remote sensing of the Earth. Topics include the physical principles upon which remote sensing is based; history and future directions; sensors and their characteristics; image data sources; image classification, interpretation and analysis techniques; and the integration of workflow outputs into GIS (Geographic Information Systems).

Prerequisite: GEG 150 with a grade of C or better.

Electives: Select three credit hours from the following courses:

Number Course Title Credits
CIS 106 1 3

Description: Provides students with a comprehensive introduction to computer programming using a currently popular programming language. Includes program logic, program structure, subroutines/functions/methods, variables, conditions, loops, arrays, files/data access, and object-oriented programming. A variety of programs are created throughout the course.

Prerequisite: Math placement in MTH 101 or higher. Math_Placement_Grid.pdf

GEG 100 3

Description: Surveys the contemporary topics of human geography; population, migration, language, religion, ethnicity, and political, economic and urban geography. Teaches the methods and tools geographers use in their science and practice. IAI S4 900N

GEG 101 3

Description: Surveys the major world regions emphasizing their physical, cultural, economic and historical geographies; provides a geographic interpretation of major current events. IAI S4 900N

GEG 103 3

Description: Surveys the technologically less developed regions of the World, including East Asia, South Asia, Middle and South America, Southwest Asia and North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Emphasis is placed on the spatial arrangement of resources, population, human institutions, economic activities, political patterns, religion, and cultural and physical landscapes. Each cultural realm is analyzed in respect to the larger international community with special attention to current events and issues. IAI S4 902N

GEG 111 3

Description: Examines the spatial distribution of elements of Earth’s four physical spheres: the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the lithosphere, and the biosphere including landforms, climates, weather, vegetation, and soils. Consideration is given to the causes of these distributions and to their effects on human populations. IAI P1 909

1 - Placement into MTH 101 or higher.


Next steps

For more information about GIS courses, contact Admission Outreach at 847.925.6700, or submit a request information form. You can also apply online.