Professional Certificate in Geographic Information Science Requirements

The College of Extended Learning's 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.

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 five core courses, plus pass an additional seven courses (at least 11.2 CEUs) (for a total of at least 19.2 CEUs) from the electives categories listed below in the Concentration in Environmental Curricula section.

Certain core course requirements may be waived and replaced with additional elective courses on 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. All applications must be accompanied by a $50 non-refundable fee. Call (415) 338-3566 to request an application form for this certificate or download the standard GIS Certificate application or the application for the GIS Certificate with a Concentration in Environmental Analysis.

Classes are held in the Department of Geography on the main SFSU 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 (3 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 Curricula

Required Core (5 courses required, 8.0 CEU):

  1. Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (Geog 9003) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  2. Data Acquisition for GIS (Geog 9022) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  3. Database Management for GIS (Geog 9015) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  4. Cartographic Design for GIS (Geog 9009) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  5. Managing a Geographic Information System Project (Geog 9004) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)

Electives (6 courses required, minimum 9.6 CEU):

  1. Raster GIS and Analysis (Geog 9008) (2 days, 1.6CEU)
  2. Using GPS for GIS (Geog 9010) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  3. Introduction to Remote Sensing (Geog 9011) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  4. Spatial Analysis and Modeling (Geog 9013) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  5. GIS Programming with Python (Geog 9021) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  6. Scientific Visualization in GIS (Geog 9020) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  7. GIS and Remote Sensing Applications for Coastal & Marine Science (Geog 9023) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  8. Watershed GIS (Geog 9024) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  9. Building Javascript Web Mapping Applications (Geog 9034) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  10. GIS in Crime Analysis (Geog 9026) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  11. Spatial Analysis of Public Health Data (Geog 9027) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  12. Processing GIS Data with ModelBuilder and Python (Geog 9029) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  13. Building a Geodatabase (Geog 9030) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  14. Introduction to R (Geog 9031) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  15. Ecological Applications of GIS (9032) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  16. GIS for Sustainable Planning and Urban Design (Geog 9033) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  17. Remote Sensing with LiDAR (Geog 9035) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  18. Further Exploration of ArcGIS (Geog 9099) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  19. 2D and 3D Mapping with Drones (GEOG 9036) (3 days, 2.4 CEU)

Minimum Student Commitment:

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

 

Concentration in Environmental Analysis Curricula

Required Core (5 courses required, 8.0 CEU):

  1. Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (Geog 9003) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  2. Data Acquisition for GIS (Geog 9022) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  3. Database Management for GIS (Geog 9015) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  4. Cartographic Design for GIS (Geog 9009) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  5. Managing a Geographic Information System Project (Geog 9004) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)

Electives Category I (5 courses required, 8.0 CEU):

  1. Raster GIS and Analysis (Geog 9008) (2 days, 1.6CEU)
  2. Using GPS for GIS (Geog 9010) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  3. Introduction to Remote Sensing (Geog 9011) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  4. Spatial Analysis and Modeling (Geog 9013) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  5. Processing GIS Data with ModelBuilder and Python (Geog 9029) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  6. Ecological Applications of GIS (Geog 9032) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  7. GIS and Remote Sensing Applications for Coastal/ & Marine Science (Geog 9023) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  8. Watershed GIS (Geog 9024) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)

Electives Category II (2 courses required, minimum 3.2 CEU):

 

  1. Building a Geodatabase (Geog 9030) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  2. GIS Programming with Python (Geog 9021) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  3. Scientific Visualization in GIS (Geog 9020) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  4. Introduction to R (Geog 9031) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  5. GIS for Sustainable Planning and Urban Design Geog 9033 (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  6. Remote Sensing with LiDAR (Geog 9035) (2 days, 1.6 CEU)
  7. 2D and 3D Mapping with Drones (GEOG 9036) (3 days, 2.4 CEU)

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. When applying for the certificate after you have completed all coursework, include documentation of intro-level GIS experience (e.g. a transcript or description of work experience) and write "Waive" in the term registered line of the application form.

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. In order to apply academic coursework toward the GIS certificate, an unofficial transcript must be included when submitting the GIS certificate application and write “Substitute, GEOG 90XX” with the equivalent course name in the term registered line of the application form. 

Certificate Application Process:

Submit your form to the College of Extended Learning. Find the appropriate form (either Standard Certificate or Conc. in Environmental Analysis) at https://cel.sfsu.edu/geographic-information-systems/certificate (scroll to bottom of webpage and follow the mailing instructions on the form).