Certificate in Geographic Information Systems

Manipulate, Analyze and Apply GIS Data


Program Details

  • Location: UW Seattle
  • Duration: 9 months
  • Class Times: Evenings
  • Cost: $4,950

Next start date

September 2017

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About this Program

Geographic information systems (GIS) combine the age-old science of cartography with powerful technology to generate all types of valuable spatial and geographic data. These systems have countless applications in industry, government and academia and are continually being used in new ways to change our view of the world around us.

In this certificate program, you’ll gain in-depth knowledge about GIS and the diverse workplace applications for these systems. We’ll examine the range of information sources that can be combined to build a GIS database, including raw data, scanned maps, GPS positions and aerial photography. You’ll learn how these systems are used to support research and decision making in a wide variety of fields, including land-use planning, environmental science and disaster preparedness.


Professionals who use GIS in their current role and those interested in entering the field.

See Requirements

Video Overview

Instructors of the Certificate in Geographic Information Systems, discuss the many uses of GIS, curriculum highlights and the professional diversity of students in this hands-on program.

Duration: 03:56

what you'll learn

  • Techniques for working with different types of geospatial data and databases
  • How to derive, interpret and present results from spatial analyses
  • Important aspects of GIS project design, development and management
  • Ways to incorporate imagery, remote sensing data, 3D spatial data and field data into GIS projects and analysis
  • GIS applications specific to the Pacific Northwest and Puget Sound region

Get Hands-On Experience

You’ll create a map based on GIS data using Esri ArcGIS for Desktop software (free one-year license provided).

Program Overview

Complete the courses listed below to earn the certificate. You may be able to take individual courses without enrolling in the certificate program; check the course pages for details.

Start Dates

Learning Formats


Attend class in person at one of our convenient locations. You’ll engage face to face with your classmates and instructors as part of a highly interactive curriculum. An online learning management system may be required to access some course materials and assignments.


Our special blended programs combine the convenience of online study with the vibrancy of in-person classes for a unique learning experience.

Not available for this program


Enjoy the flexibility of online learning, which allows you to participate in class activities, assignments and discussions on your schedule, from anywhere. Experience cutting-edge technology and a supportive, diverse learning community.

Not available for this program