Undergraduate Course Listing

Undergraduate Admissions

Minor in GIS

Geographical Information Science (GIS)

A Geographic information system (GIS) is an integrative approach to helping solve complex problems of inter-linking layers of geographic data. Since the early 1960s, GIS has irrevocably altered the way we capture, analyze, store, and present spatial information GIS is much more than a map-making software application. Although it has its roots in cartography and the graphical display of information, its breadth spans from geographic data acquisition, geospatial database construction and management, spatial analysis, and geovisualization. Contemporary GIS-trained professionals work in places like government agencies, utility companies, marketing firms, non-profit organizations, and publishing companies. Federal government agencies such as NGA, FEMA, USGS, DOD, EPA, and NASA routinely recruit Geography majors/minors with strong GIS background.

GIS is transforming the field of Geography into an interdisciplinary science that integrates many specialty areas.

Spatial Analysis Laboratory (SAL)

The SAL is located in the Geography Department Suite, in Room 223, 1922 F Street, NW. The laboratory consists of 30 networked PC's, featuring the latest in GIS (ArcMap 10) & Remote Sensing (IMAGINE 10) software. It is strictly reserved for students who are enrolled in geography courses and require use of special software. Opening hours for the lab vary by semester, month and day. Please consult the daily/weekly and monthly calendars.

Frequently Asked Questions About Our GIS Lab

SAL Manager

There is a lab manager (Richard Hinton) who supervises the SAL, and will assist with GIS course material. You are strongly urged to bring specific questions (lecture materials or assignments) to him in the SAL during lab hours. Requests for help made in person are more effective those made by phone or email.

GIS Minor

If you would like to explore GIS as a minor, you are required to complete a minimum of18 credits of coursework.

You must take 5 courses (15 credits) from the Techniques Group. In addition, you must take 1 other Geography course to complete the final 3 credit requirement. The choice of final course must be discussed with an advisor.

Techniques Group

GEOG 2104 Introduction to Cartography and GIS (3) Fundamentals of cartography; geographic data structure and information systems.

GEOG 2105 Techniques of Spatial Analysis (3) Nature of geographical inquiry and analytical methods used in the study of spatial processes and patterns.

GEOG 2107 Introduction to Remote Sensing (3) Remote-sensing techniques using digital satellite imagery and aerial photography. Application to rural and urban settings, archaeology, and environmental monitoring.

GEOG 3106 Intermediate Geographic Information Systems (3) Principles of geographic information systems and their use in spatial analysis and information management .

GIS Minor Elective

GIS minor students will have the opportunity to choose their advanced class from a series of GIS electives designed to meet the advanced/applied techniques requirements of both the GIS Minor and the graduate GIS Certificate.

These classes are as follows (Pending course approval number):

GEOG 4307: Digital Image Processing (Spring)

GEOG 4309: GIS for Emergency Management (Fall)

GEOG 4311: Open Source GIS (Spring)

GEOG 3196 (4308): Programming for Geographic Applications (Fall)

GEOG 3196 (4310): Geovizualization and Cartography (Fall)

For a more detailed description of these courses, and the appropriate sequencing, please read the following:

GIS & Remote Sensing Courses (Adobe PDF)

If you have further questions or want to fill out a Minor Declaration Form, please contact:

Dr. Ryan Engstrom (GIS Minor Advisor)
Mr. Richard Hinton (GIS Minor Advisor)


GEOG 2104: Introduction to Cartography & GIS

Geography 2104 is designed to introduce students to both the science and skills of cartography, by examining topics such as visualization, map projections, map interpretation skills, thematic mapping, and most importantly, the fundamentals of map creation using computer-assisted techniques. The GIS portion of the course will focus on obtaining a good introductory competency with the GIS application ArcGIS 10.  


GEOG 2107: Remote Sensing

The objective of this course is to introduce the theoretical, technical and applied aspects of remote sensing as a tool for monitoring and managing earth resources. Particular emphasis is placed on the electromagnetic radiation transfer, and data collection with aerial photographic and satellite sensor systems. Lectures emphasize the theoretical and technical aspects of image acquisition and interpretation.


GEOG 3106: Intermediate GIS

Geography 3106 is designed to build upon students GIS and cartographic knowledge by examining topics such as visualization, map projections, map interpretation skills, thematic mapping, and most importantly, the fundamentals of map creation using computer-assisted techniques. The practical element of the course will focus on expanding students existing proficiency with the GIS application ArcGIS 10.  GEOG 2104 & GEOG 2105 are prerequisites for this course.