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Geographic Information Systems, MAS

Geographic Information Systems, MAS

Academic Programs / Graduate Degrees / Geographic Information Systems, MAS

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Data Analysis, Data Science, GIS, Mapping, Programming, SPATIAL, Technology, geography, science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)

Earn your professional degree in one year with this master's degree program. The job market in GIS is red-hot; our students have consistently landed rewarding positions in the Phoenix area and throughout the world. The MAS GIS is a STEM-designated degree program.

Program Description
Degree Awarded: MAS  Geographic Information Systems

The MAS in geographic information systems is a compact, one-year degree program fostering advanced study in the management and use of GIS technology in public and corporate environments. The degree program meets important educational needs of working professionals and recent college graduates seeking to improve their career standing. The program provides a comprehensive professional program that balances work in the theoretical and technical aspects of GIS with the applications domain. Students are exposed to innovative technology with a focus on building invaluable problem-solving skills, and the opportunity to work on real-world GIS projects.

The program places the focus on location --- the heart of geography and GIS. From that foundation, students learn advanced modeling solutions in GIS and Earth-observing as well as how to integrate computer science, statistics and geography to address a multitude of questions.

Small class sizes ensure quality attention from the faculty, and classes are held in the evening during the week, allowing flexibility for the working professional. The degree is achievable in a one-year time period. A new cohort begins the program each August, with students attending evening classes during the fall and spring semesters. Upon completion of the spring semester, students select a project to complete during a summer eight-week session. Final presentations take place in mid-July, and in fewer than 11 months the degree program is complete.

At a Glance
Degree Requirements

30 credit hours including the required applied project course (GPH 693 or GIS 693)

Required Core (24 credit hours)
GIS 601 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (2)
GIS 602 Intermediate GIS (2)
GIS 603 Spatial Statistics and Modeling (2)
GIS 604 Implementation in the Corporate and Public Sectors (2)
GIS 605 GIS Project Planning and Implementation (2)
GIS 606 GIS Project Presentation (2)
GIS 610 Programming the GIS Environment (3)
GIS 630 GIS Technologies (3)
GIS 640 GIS for Business (3)
GIS 650 GIS for the Internet (3)

Other Requirement (3 credit hours)
GIS 684 Internship (3)

Culminating Experience (3 credit hours)
GIS 693 Applied Project (3) or
GPH 693 Applied Project (3)

Additional Curriculum Information
Other requirement coursework may be substituted with approval of the academic unit.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's degree in a related field from a regionally accredited institution or if they demonstrate a minimum of three years related professional experience with a bachelor's degree in any field from a regionally accredited institution.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. personal statement
  4. resume
  5. two letters of recommendation
  6. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

Applicants must prepare a formal, written personal statement regarding relevant academic experience, professional experience and overall interest in GIS.

Letters of recommendation must be from two people who can attest to the applicant's academic and professional achievements. Letters can be from any combination of current or former instructors, supervisors or professionals currently employed within the GIS or related discipline.

Career Opportunities

Professionals with expertise in geospatial information science are in high demand across sectors and industries, including consulting firms, government agencies and community organizations. Skills in geographical data science, mapping and data analysis are valuable to businesses and institutions relying on data-driven approaches to solve complex real-world problems.

Students prepare for careers in private and public industry in which employees with these skill sets are needed for a wide range of positions, such as software developers, GIS analysts, mapping engineers, real estate researchers and more. Additional career examples include:

  • cartographer or photogrammetrist
  • geospatial information scientist or technologist
  • geospatial intelligence analyst
  • mapping technician
  • software developer
  • remote sensing scientist or technologist
Contact Information

What are Accelerated Programs?
Accelerated Programs allow students the opportunity to expedite the completion of their degree.

3 year programs

These programs allow students to fast-track their studies after admission and earn a bachelor’s degree in three years or fewer while participating in the same high-quality educational experience of a 4-year option. Students should talk to their academic advisor to get started.

4+1 year programs

These programs allow students to accelerate their studies by combining undergraduate with graduate coursework, which may allow them to earn a bachelor’s and a master's degree in as few as five years (for some programs).

Each program has requirements students must meet to be eligible for consideration. Acceptance to the graduate program requires a separate application. During their junior year, eligible students are advised by their academic departments to apply.
What are Concurrent Programs?
Students pursuing concurrent degrees earn two distinct degrees and receive two diplomas. ASU offers students two ways to earn concurrent degrees: by choosing a predetermined combination or creating their own combination. Predetermined combinations have a single admissions application and one easy to follow major map. To add a concurrent degree to your existing degree, work with your academic advisor. Either way, concurrent degrees allow students to pursue their own personal or professional interests.
What are Joint Programs?
Joint programs, or jointly conferred degrees, are offered by more than one college and provide opportunities for students to take advantage of the academic strengths of two academic units. Upon graduation, students are awarded one degree and one diploma conferred by two colleges.

What constitutes a New Program?
ASU adds new programs to Degree Search frequently. Come back often and look for the “New Programs” option.
What are Online Programs?
ASU Online offers programs in an entirely online format with multiple enrollment sessions throughout the year. See for more information.
What is WRGP (Western Regional Graduate Program)?
The Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP) provides a reduced tuition rate to non-resident graduate students who qualify. Visit the WRGP/WICHE webpage for more information:

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