Geographic Information Systems (GIS): Certificate

Professional Development Certificates

The GIS certificate is a professional development certificate (not an academic degree) and, as such, courses carry continuing education units (CEUs), nationally recognized units of measurement for professional development and training. CEUs may be used when employers, agencies, and other authorities require a specified number of hours of study and where non-academic credit is acceptable. One CEU equals 10 hours of instruction.


GIS Curricula

Participants may complete the program requirements and receive a certificate of completion, or attend just those classes that are of particular interest. There are two certificate options, the regular Certificate and the Certificate with a Concentration in Environmental Analysis. Candidates for the standard certificate designation must pass each of the five core courses (8.0 CEUs), plus pass an additional six courses (at least 9.6 CEUs) from the list of elective courses (for a total of at least 17.6 CEUs). Individuals interested in the concentration in environmental analysis must pass each of the six core courses (9.6 CEUs), plus pass an additional six courses (at least 9.6 CEUs) (for a total of at least 19.2 CEUs) from the electives categories listed below in the Concentration in Environmental Curriculum section.

Certain core course requirements may be waived and replaced with additional elective courses upon advisement, based upon prior experience or coursework (see waivers, substitutions, or equivalencies policy below). However, this does not reduce the total CEUs required for the certificate. Once a candidate has completed the necessary coursework an application for the certificate of completion must be submitted. Once you have passed all required core classes and electives, students are asked to apply for their certificate of completion below.

Classes are held in the Department of Geography & Environment on the SF State main campus. Each class is held on Friday and Saturday and both days must be attended to complete the course. The program is designed to be completed in less than one year and affords the opportunity to finish in one semester (three months). To guarantee a space in a class, please register early. Class size is limited due to the need for all students to have access to computer terminals.


Standard Certificate Curriculum

Required Core (5 courses required, 8.0 CEU)

Course Title Length (Days) CEU Term Offered
 
GEOG 9003: Introduction to GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9022: Data Acquisition for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9015: Database Management for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9009: Cartographic Design for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9004: Managing a GIS Project 2 1.6 FA/SP

Electives (6 courses required, minimum 9.6 CEU)

Course Title Length (Days) CEUs Term Offered
 
GEOG 9008: Raster GIS & Analysis 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9010: Using GPS for GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9011: Introduction to Remote Sensing 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9013: Spatial Analysis & Modeling 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9021: GIS Programming with Python 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9020: Scientific Visualization in GIS 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9023: GIS & Remote Sensing Applications for Coastal & Marine Science 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9024: Watershed GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9034: Building JavaScript Web Mapping Applications 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9026: GIS in Crime Analysis 2 1.6  
GEOG 9027: Spatial Analysis of Public Health Data 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9030: Building a Geodatabase 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9031: Introduction to R 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9032: Ecological Applications of GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9033: GIS for Sustainable Planning & Urban Design 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9035: Remote Sensing with LiDAR 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9036: 2D & 3D Mapping with Drones 3 2.4 SU

Minimum Student Commitment:

Each student will be expected to complete a minimum of 17.6 CEUs (11 courses).


Concentration in Environmental Analysis Curriculum

Please note that the requirements for this certificate track have been modified as of fall 2019

Required Core (6 courses required, 9.6 CEU)

Course Title Length (Days) CEU Term Offered
*A student may take both GEOG 9008 and GEOG 9013, where one may be counted as core and the other may be counted as an elective. No courses may be "double-counted."
GEOG 9003: Introduction to GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9022: Data Acquisition for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9015: Database Management for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9009: Cartographic Design for GIS 2 1.6 FA/SP
GEOG 9004: Managing a GIS Project 2 1.6 FA/SP
*Choose One: GEOG 9008: Raster GIS & Analysis OR GEOG 9013: Spatial Analysis & Modeling 2 1.6 FA GEOG 9008/
SP GEOG 9013

Applied Environmental Methods Electives (4 courses required, 6.4 CEU)

Course Title Length (Days) CEUs Term Offered
*A student may take both GEOG 9008 and GEOG 9013, where one may be counted as core and the other may be counted as an elective. No courses may be "double-counted."
GEOG 9008: Raster GIS & Analysis* 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9010: Using GPS for GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9011: Introduction to Remote Sensing 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9032: Ecological Applications of GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9023: GIS & Remote Sensing Applications for Coastal & Marine Science 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9024: Watershed GIS 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9036: 2D & 3D Mapping with Drones 3 2.4 SU
GEOG 9035: Remote Sensing with LiDAR 2 1.6 FA

Programming & Modeling Electives (2 courses required, minimum 3.2 CEU)

Course Title Length (Days) CEUs Term Offered
*A student may take both GEOG 9008 and GEOG 9013, where one may be counted as core and the other may be counted as an elective. No courses may be "double-counted."
GEOG 9013: Spatial Analysis & Modeling* 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9021: GIS Programming with Python 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9029: Processing GIS Data ModelBuilder & Python 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9031: Introduction to R 2 1.6 SP
GEOG 9020: Scientific Visualization in GIS 2 1.6 FA
GEOG 9034: Building JavaScript Web Mapping Applications 2 1.6 FA

Minimum Student Commitment:

Each student will be expected to complete a minimum of 19.2 CEUs (12 courses).


Waivers

We will waive GEOG 9003: Introduction to Geographic Information Systems if you have successfully completed an equivalent GIS course at another university. However, we do not allow any additional waiving of courses. Please note that all our courses are now taught in ArcGIS Pro, so if this is new to you, we recommend working through some of the tutorials on ESRI Training to familiarize yourself with the new interface. Note that you will still be required to complete the minimum number of CEUs (17.6) to apply for a certificate after waiving GEOG 9003.

If you have prior work experience that may qualify you to waive GEOG 9003, please consult the Associate Director, Anna Studwell (astudwel@sfsu.edu) or Director, Jerry Davis (jerry@sfsu.edu) to determine whether you're eligible.


Substitutions

We will allow direct substitutions for College of Extended Learning GIS Certificate courses for SF State students according to the the GIS Certificate SF State Equivalencies List. Please consult the Associate Director, Anna Studwell (astudwel@sfsu.edu) or Director, Jerry Davis (jerry@sfsu.edu) if you have questions.


Textbooks & Materials

All materials for classes are provided by the program and included in the cost. To assist in the hands-on learning process, free one-year (time out) student license of Esri ArcGIS (Advanced level) and Spatial, Geostatistical and 3D Analysts ($29,000 retail value) are available to students completing the certificate program. Additionally, students completing the program are provided free access to certain Esri Virtual Campus courses, online training options for learning Esri software and GIS concepts, to supplement their training experience through the SF State GIS certificate program.


Certificate of Completion Request

Once you have completed the necessary coursework, submit the Certificate of Completion Request Form:

 


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