Geographic Information Science, BS

The Bachelor of Science in Geographic Information Science (GIS) at SJSU offers a unique and exciting opportunity to explore the world through the lens of data. This degree will equip you with the skills and knowledge to make a real impact in various industries and fields. Imagine having the power to visualize, analyze, and interpret spatial data to solve complex problems.

With a B.S. in Geographic Information Science degree students will gain a hands-on experience in using cutting-edge technology to create maps, analyze geographic patterns, and assist in making informed decisions on how land should be converted into housing, offices, or perhaps a park.

Geographic Information Science, BS Catalog Listing

Why you should consider this degree:

  • Endless Applications
    GIS technology is used across a wide range of industries, from urban planning and environmental management to disaster response and business analytics. You'll have the flexibility to work in areas that align with your passion and interests.
  • In-Demand Skills
    In today's data-driven world, the ability to work with spatial data is highly valued. By graduating with a GIS degree, you'll be well-equipped for a variety of exciting career paths where your skills will be in demand.
  • Problem Solving
    As a GIS professional, you'll be a problem solver. Whether it's optimizing transportation routes, conserving natural resources, or planning sustainable communities, you'll contribute to making the world a better place.
  • Technology and Innovation
    The GIS program at SJSU ensures that you stay updated with the latest technology trends in the geospatial field. You'll have the chance to work with state-of-the-art tools and software, preparing you for the challenges of the future.
  • Practical Experience
    SJSU emphasizes practical learning. You'll have opportunities to work on real-world projects, internships, and collaborations that will give you the confidence and skills needed to excel in your chosen career.
  • Diverse Faculty
    Learn from experienced faculty members who are experts in their fields. Their guidance and mentorship will enrich your learning journey and open doors to networking opportunities.
  • Career Growth
    With the increasing importance of data-driven decision-making, GIS professionals are in high demand. This degree sets you up for a fulfilling and well-compensated career with opportunities for advancement.
  • Global Perspective
    Geographic information knows no boundaries. Your skills will have applications around the world, making this degree ideal for those who are curious about different cultures and landscapes.

Ultimately, the Bachelor of Science in Geographic Information Science from SJSU offers you a chance to combine your love for technology, data, and the world around you. Join us on a journey of exploration, innovation, and meaningful impact – where you'll be at the forefront of shaping a more informed and connected future.

Graduates with a B.S. in GIS will:

  1. Examine social and ethical issues with GIS to foster learning about inclusion and sustainability;
  2. Analyze, critique, and communicate geospatial data and scholarship in relation to other scientific disciplines;
  3. Demonstrate mastery of geographic information science literature, data, methods, and visualization tools and techniques;
  4. Create, investigate, and collaborate on productive spatial research activities from inquiry to impact;
  5. ​Apply geographic information science theories, methods, and technologies to address problems from local to global scales.

A Bachelor of Science in Geographic Information Science (GIS) opens up various career opportunities in both the public and private sectors, the diversity of applications for GIS technology ensures that graduates have opportunities across various industries and sectors. Here are some potential career options for individuals with a degree in GIS: 

  • GIS Analyst
    GIS analysts collect, manipulate, and analyze spatial data to create maps and perform spatial analyses. They work in a variety of industries such as urban planning, environmental management, transportation, and natural resource management.
  • Cartographer
    Cartographers design and create maps, both digital and traditional, using GIS technology. They combine geographic data with design principles to create visually appealing and informative maps for various purposes.
  • Remote Sensing Analyst
    Remote sensing analysts work with satellite and aerial imagery to gather information about the Earth's surface. They analyze and interpret these images to study land use, natural resource distribution, environmental changes, and more.
  • Urban/Regional Planner
    Urban and regional planners use GIS to assist in the development and management of land use plans. They analyze spatial data to help create sustainable and well-organized communities, considering factors such as zoning regulations, infrastructure, and environmental impact.
  • Environmental Scientist
    GIS skills are essential for environmental scientists who study and manage the Earth's natural resources and ecosystems. GIS helps them analyze and visualize data related to pollution, habitat distribution, climate change, and more.
  • Transportation Planner
    Transportation planners use GIS to analyze traffic patterns, plan efficient routes, and develop transportation networks. They play a crucial role in urban and rural transportation infrastructure development.
  • Natural Resource Manager
    GIS is used extensively in natural resource management, helping professionals monitor and conserve forests, water bodies, wildlife habitats, and other natural resources. It assists in making informed decisions to balance resource use and conservation.
  • Geospatial Data Scientist
    Geospatial data scientists specialize in analyzing large datasets that have geographic components. They use advanced statistical and analytical techniques to uncover patterns, trends, and insights from spatial data.
  • Land Surveyor
    Land surveyors use GIS technology to create accurate maps and measurements of land and property boundaries. They play a vital role in property development, construction projects, and land management.
  • GIS Technician
    GIS technicians assist analysts and specialists in data collection, entry, and maintenance. They often work behind the scenes to ensure that geographic data is accurate and up-to-date.
  • Geographic Information Officer (GIO)
    In larger organizations or government agencies, GIOs oversee the management and integration of GIS technology across various departments. They strategize the use of GIS to support decision-making and collaboration.
  • Geospatial Software Developer
    If you have a knack for programming, you could develop GIS software and applications. This role involves creating tools that enable spatial data analysis, visualization, and management.
  • Emergency Management Specialist
    During disasters or emergencies, GIS specialists help in disaster response and recovery efforts by creating maps that assist in resource allocation, evacuation planning, and damage assessment.
  • Geospatial Sales/Marketing
    Work in sales or marketing roles within GIS software and hardware companies, helping clients understand the benefits of geospatial technology for their needs.

Please contact the GEOG (GIS) Undergraduate Advisor for more info.