Geographic Information Systems - Associate of Applied Science (AAS)

Description

The Geographic Information Systems Associate of Applied Science is a career and technical education degree designed for students focused on workforce readiness to secure an entry-level position in the industry.

Geographic information systems (GIS) are designed to work with data referenced by spatial or geographic coordinates. GIS is a database with capabilities for spatially referenced data, a set of operations for working with and analyzing the data, and a cartographic system for designing maps. 

Graduates work in natural resources, federal/state/local governments, planning, utilities, real estate, education, retail, businesses, banking, insurance, and web mapping. Careers typically include positions such as GIS technician, analyst, project manager, computer programmer, database administrator, systems administrator, cartographer, applications developer, and related managerial and administrative roles.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, students will be able to:

  1. Apply foundational theories of geospatial science to real-world industry applications.
  2. Use industry-standard GIS software proficiently.
  3. Explain geospatial ideas and outcomes to stakeholders, including non-professionals.
  4. Create procedures for using GIS and modeling data.
  5. Use cartographic design principles to communicate effectively with maps.

Entrance Requirements

Academic Entrance Requirements

Recommended:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Completion of WR 065 Rhetoric and Critical Thinking II or minimum placement Wr/Comm Level 7
  • MTH 060 Beginning Algebra or higher or minimum placement Math Level 10
  • Completion of computer competency (either IC3 exam or CIS 120 Computer Concepts, which may be taken as part of program)

Other Entrance Requirements

All students enrolled in the Geographic Information Systems program (which includes requirements for co-operative work experience) may have to pass criminal history checks (CHC) as a condition of their acceptance into a worksite. See the program page or program director for more information.

Additional Program Costs (Beyond Standard Tuition/Fees and Textbooks)

Material Costs

Required:

  • Materials (USB drive, maps, office supplies): $100

Recommended:

  • A desktop or laptop computer capable of running GIS software*: approximately $1,200

*Most courses use GIS software that is compatible only with Microsoft Windows, and there is no MacOS version. Contact program instructor for specifics.

Course Requirements

Course Title Credits
Core Courses
AV 271Introduction to Unmanned Aerial Systems4
GEOG 101Introduction to Geospatial Science & GIS4
GEOG 211Cartography4
GEOG 265Geographic Information Systems4
GEOG 266ArcGIS4
GEOG 267Geodatabase Design4
GEOG 273Spatial Data Collection4
GEOG 275GIS Capstone4
GEOG 280Co-op Work Experience GIS3
GEOG 284GIS Customization4
or CIS 122 Introduction to Programming
GEOG 285Data Conversion and Documentation4
GEOG 286Remote Sensing4
GEOG 287Spatial Analysis4
GIS electives: Choose one of the following sequences:6-12
Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Operations
and Unmanned Aerial Sys Ops Maint
Computer Concepts
and Software Applications
and AutoCAD 1
Forest Surveying
and Aerial Photo
Other Required Courses
CIS 135DBDatabase Theory/SQL4
Discipline Studies courses8
FOR 230AMap, Compass and GPS3
FOR 235Resource Measurements4
Choose one course from the following:3-4
Customer Service
Business Human Relations
Introduction to Intercultural Communication
Interpersonal Communication
Small Group Communication
Choose one course from the following:4
Applied Technical Mathematics
Math in Society
Or one course from the foundational requirements math list
WR 121Academic Composition4
WR 227Technical Writing4
Total Credits91-98

Advising Notes

Most GIS courses are offered once per year beginning in Fall term. Students may take an introductory GIS course or non-program support and/or selected GIS courses if they begin Winter, Spring, or Summer term or if they need to build skills related to prerequisites. GIS courses are offered each term and must be taken together and sequentially. Students are recommended to avoid working more than 10 hours per week during any term due to heavy course load.

This degree is designed for students planning to enter their chosen career upon graduation. Often only selected credits are considered transferable to public or private baccalaureate institutions.

Performance Standards

  • Academic Requirements:
    • Students must have a 2.0 cumulative GPA to earn a COCC certificate or degree.
    • All courses in the program must be completed with a grade of C or higher.

Sample Plan

Sample Plan Grid
First Year
FallCredits
FOR 230AMap, Compass and GPS3
GEOG 101Introduction to Geospatial Science & GIS4
GEOG 265Geographic Information Systems4
GEOG 266ArcGIS4
Choose one course from the following:4
Applied Technical Mathematics 
Math in Society 
Or one course from the foundational requirements math list
 
 Credits19
Winter
FOR 235Resource Measurements4
GEOG 211Cartography4
GIS elective3-5
 Credits11-13
Spring
CIS 135DBDatabase Theory/SQL4
GEOG 267Geodatabase Design4
GIS elective3-5
WR 121Academic Composition4
 Credits15-17
Summer
GEOG 280Co-op Work Experience GIS3
 Credits3
Second Year
Fall
Discipline Studies Course4
GEOG 273Spatial Data Collection4
WR 227Technical Writing4
AV 271Introduction to Unmanned Aerial Systems4
 Credits16
Winter
GEOG 284
GIS Customization
Introduction to Programming
4
GEOG 285Data Conversion and Documentation4
GEOG 287Spatial Analysis4
 Credits12
Spring
Discipline Studies Course4
GEOG 275GIS Capstone4
GEOG 286Remote Sensing4
Choose one course from the following:3-4
Customer Service 
Business Human Relations 
Introduction to Intercultural Communication 
Interpersonal Communication 
Small Group Communication 
 Credits15-16
 Total Credits91-96

Outside of
expected

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