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1 Proposed Certificate in Geographic Information Science Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences Submitted: November 9, 2016 Geographic information systems (GIS) capture the complex spatial and temporal patterns that drive the world in which we live. These systems and the digital spatial data that they contain inform major decisions on how we manage natural resources, build smart cities, respond to natural disasters, and predict the spread of disease. At a smaller scale, these same systems and data guide such everyday tasks as deciding the route to take when we drive, finding family and friends using our phones, or even figuring out when the bus will arrive. GIS, therefore, directly touches how we live and work. Geographic information science (GIScience) has emerged as a field of study focused on fundamental questions about how to acquire, store, manage, analyze and visualize geographic information using computers. Because of the power of geographic information, geographic information specialist is a profession expected to grow by 29% over the next decade, much faster than the average occupation (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook). This certificate is designed to provide the knowledge and skills needed to work with geographic information and prepare individuals to work in this rapidly growing profession. It is also important to note that many who need skill in geospatial technologies are already in the workplace. As public agencies and private businesses continue to spin up their GIS capabilities, there is need to train the existing workforce. We see the online population as the primary target audience for this certificate and an online path to the completion of all requirements is, therefore, an important element. Purpose and Objective Used properly geospatial technologies can help us manage natural environments and built systems more effectively and efficiently. As with any other powerful technology, however, the improper use of these same technologies can have significant negative consequences. Our objective with this certificate is to help build a knowledgeable geospatial workforce that understands how to use GIScience properly and is able to apply this understanding in ways that lead to, for example, improved transportation systems, better water quality, or more productive companies. We will help students gain higher level of knowledge of related concepts and theories through readings and discussions, and as well as an applied understanding of related technology through hands on laboratory exercises. We expect the certificate to be of interest to traditional university students as well as nontraditional, non-matriculated students. Non-traditional, non-matriculated students are expected to be in the workforce and seeking advancement or an updated skill set, or those looking for a career change. The certificate is expected to draw students from a variety of majors including geography, environmental science, political science, sociology, anthropology, environmental policy and planning, computer science, and engineering. Learning outcomes include an understanding of how: geographic patterns and processes are captured and represented using computer technologies 1 P a g e

2 spatial analytical methods are used to address challenges associated with the study and management of urban, natural, and agricultural systems geospatial technologies (e.g., geographic information and remote sensing systems) can be used to conduct spatial analyses geovisualization is used to communicate the results of spatial analyses collaborative project teams address complicated geographic issues Relation to Existing Programs The Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences (GSS) offers a major in Geography: GIScience tract and a minor in GIScience. The major and track is designed to provide students with a solid understanding of the theories and concepts that shape our understanding of geographic processes and patterns, as well as an understanding the geospatial technologies used to study and manage these processes and patterns. We believe that this balance of concept, application, and technique is the best approach to educating those who will become GIScience professionals. We cannot ignore the fact, however, that people from a wide variety of disciplines see the utility of related technologies. The GIScience minor is designed to provide those who will be casual users of geographic data a basic understanding of the technology, the ability to use it intelligently for relatively straightforward applications, and the theoretical background needed for more in depth training if so desired. As suggested above, the certificate has two objectives: 1) provide GIScience training for non-matriculated students who are currently in the workforce or seeking a career change, and 2) provide more advance training for those seeking degrees other than Geography: GIScience. It is intended to be more focused on those students wanting or requiring more practical applications experience. Students majoring in Geography: Geographic Information Science Track or minoring in Geographic Information Science cannot also earn the Certificate of Geographic Information Science. Career opportunities As stated above, demand for individuals with training in geospatial technologies is expected to remain high for the foreseeable future. This demand is a direct response to the large number of applications to which the technology can be applied. Everything happens somewhere. Planners and managers responsible for natural resources, public infrastructure, and the provision of social services (e.g., health, police, fire, community development) all use geographic information to design and implement plans and procedures. Precision agriculture, precision marketing, and fleet routing all rely on geographic information. Where would we be without location-based applications that find your iphone/friend/meeting location/, or let you play Pokemon Go. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the industries who hire the most people with geospatial skills include architectural, engineering, and related services (33%), local governments (26%), and management, scientific, and technical consulting services (12%). Type in Geographic Information System or geospatial into the job search engine Indeed and you quickly get an idea of the number and variety of open positions. These positions range from those requiring highly technical development skills to the ability to apply GIS technology to particular problem domains (e.g., urban planning). 2 P a g e

3 Projected enrollment While the demand for people trained in geospatial technologies is evident, projecting demand remains challenging. Our current plans are to market on campus through workshops and events, as well as in courses covering topics that rely on GIS technology. We will work with industry user groups (e.g., Iowa Geographic Information Council, Eastern Iowa GIS User Group, Central Iowa ArcUser Group, Iowa Counties Information Technology Organization) to promote participation from non-matriculated students. We set as a goal 30 students in the program by spring of 2018 and 60 by spring Administrative structure The certificate will be administered by GSS. We are discussing with The Division of Continuing Education and CLAS the possibility of a lecturer position for up to three years to develop and teach online courses. At least initially, the GSS Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS, Professor Marc Linderman) will act as coordinator and this individual, along with the CLAS Advisor for the Department (Ms. Hannah Whitcomb) will act as advisors. The coordinator will be supported by an advisory board comprised of three members, two from the Department of Geographical and Sustainability (initial appointments are Professors Caglar Koylu and Maggie Carrel) and one representative from the public or private sector. The intent of public/private sector representative is to insure the program remains sensitive to off-campus students and responsive to the needs of geospatial hiring community. The GSS Undergraduate Academic Coordinator (UAC, Ms. Tina Pap) will assist with program promotion and administration. Contact Information: Name position telephone Marc Linderman* DUS, coordinator & advisor David Bennett DEO Hannah Whitcomb Advisor Tina Pap UAC, promotion and admin *primary contact person Certificate requirements The Certificate in Geographic Information Science requires a minimum of 18 s.h. Students complete courses from two content areas: core courses and courses in geographical analysis. Students interested in the development of GIS technology, in particular, are strongly encouraged to also take courses in related analytical fields (e.g., computer science, information science). Students interested in the application of GIS technology may prefer courses that illustrate its use in particular problem domains. The certificate program is open to all students who meet the University of Iowa admission standards. Students must earn a grade point average of at least 2.00 in all work attempted as part of the certificate. No course taken pass/non-pass may be used as part of a certificate. Students may use up to 6 s.h. toward certificate requirements that also count toward a major or minor unless otherwise prohibited by the requirements of: 1) the specific major or minor in question, or 2) this certificate (e.g., students may not earn the GIScience certificate and a Geography: GIScience major or GIScience minor). Six credit hours can transfer from another institution. The GIS certificate program is designed to allow students to complete requirements 3 P a g e

4 entirely on online, entirely on campus, or through a combination of online and on campus courses. We expect there will be no difference in degree outcomes based on how degree requirements are completed. GIScience certificate- 18 credit hours (proposed online courses *) Required Core Name Prerequisites Credit hours GEOG 1030 Our Digital Earth* or None 3 Foundations of GIS GEOG:1065 Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & None 3 Processes* GEOG:3540 Introduction to Geographic Visualization GEOG 1030 or 3 Geographic Analysis Electives Intermediate coursework- 2 required from: Name Prerequisites Credit hours NEW Online Only Intermediate GIS GEOG 1030 or 3 GEOG:3500 Introduction to Environmental Remote None 3 Sensing GEOG:3520 GIS for Environmental Studies GEOG 1030 or 3 GEOG:3570 Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR): None 3 Principles and applications GEOG:4020 Field Methods: Mapping and Mobile GEOG 1030 or 3 Computing GEOG:4580 Introduction to Geographic Databases* GEOG 1030 or 3 Capstone coursework- 1 required from: Name Prerequisites Credit hours GEOG:4150 Health and Environment: GIS None (advanced 3 Applications standing suggested) GEOG:4500 Applications in Environmental GEOG: Remote Sensing GEOG:4520 GIS for Environmental Studies: GEOG:3520 or New 3 Applications intermediate Independent project or Internship None (advanced standing suggested) 3 4 P a g e

5 Students are strongly encouraged to take coursework in computer programming. One of the following courses may substitute for one intermediate elective: GEOG:1030 Programming for GIScience* CS:1110 Introduction to Computer Science CS:1210 Computer Science I: Fundamentals MSCI:3005:0EXW Information Systems* CS:2110 Programming for Informatics CS:2230 Computer Science II: Data Structures Course sequencing Students seeking this certificate should pay close attention to course prerequisites. Course selection at the core and intermediate levels may lock students into more depth (i.e., a specialization in geographic information systems or remote sensing) or more breadth depending on the prerequisites associated with higher level courses. For example, students interested in specializing in geographic information systems might take: GEOG:1030 Our Digital Earth GEOG:1065 Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes* GEOG:4580 Introduction to Geographic Databases* NEW Online Only Intermediate GIS NEW Programming for GIScience GEOG:4150 Health and Environment: GIS Applications Students interested in specializing in remote sensing might take: 1050 Foundations of GIS GEOG:1065 Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes* GEOG:4580 Introduction to Geographic Databases* GEOG:3500 Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing GEOG:3570 Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR): Principles and applications GEOG:4500 Applications in Environmental Remote Sensing And those seeking a more general background might consider: GEOG:1030 Our Digital Earth GEOG:1065 Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes* GEOG:4580 Introduction to Geographic Databases* NEW Online Only Intermediate GIS GEOG:3500 Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing Independent project or Internship Online course roll out (Draft) Semester Offered In Development Spring 2017 Our digital earth Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes 5 P a g e

6 Fall 2017 Our digital earth Introduction to Geographic Databases Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes Spring 2018 Introduction to Geographic Databases Introduction to Geographic Visualization Our digital earth Summer 2018 Introduction to Geographic Visualization Fall 2018 Our digital earth Programming for GIScience Introduction Spatial Analysis: Patterns & Processes Spring 2019 Intermediate GIS Health and Environment: GIS Applications Programming for GIScience 6 P a g e

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