Geographic Information Science Minordecorative

Students minoring in Geographic Information science (GIS) gain the technical skills needed to acquire, manage, and analyze large amounts of geospatial data. Students will get computer training in digital processing of remote sensing observations and cartographic vector data, spatial analysis, and the display of information in Geospatial Information Science (GIS) software. The curriculum will provide students with the necessary background to use GIS in various fields such as environmental monitoring, disaster assessments, military analysis and intelligence, social justice, cartography, and other related fields. This minor goes beyond the techniques for gathering and analyzing data and requires an understanding of the environmental and social processes represented by the data. These tools are essential to the education and future of global citizens.

Careers in GIS

GIS-trained professionals are sought after across the private and public sectors. The U.S. Department of Labor recently identified GIS as one of nine “high growth industries”.

Federal government agencies such as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Defense, Environmental Protection Agency and NASA routinely recruit UMD graduates with strong GIS backgrounds. Local DMV private tech companies New Light Technologies, Immuta, and IIC Technologies were founded by and/or have hired many recent graduates in GIS.

How to Declare the Minor

There are no special requirements for the minor program in GIS. The Department of Geographical Sciences welcomes students from every area of study!

To declare the minor, fill out the registration form. A Geographical Sciences Advisor will contact you in to confirm enrollment. 

Students may declare a minor in any semester, regardless of how many courses they have completed, EXCEPT the semester in which they intend to graduate. 

Any questions may be directed to geog-advise [at] Students may also schedule an appointment with a Geographical Sciences Advisor.

GIS Minor Requirements

  • All credits for the minor must be taken in the Department of Geographical Sciences at the University of Maryland, College Park.
  • All courses must be completed with a grade of “C-” (2.0) or better.
  • No more than six credits are to be included in the minor and student's major, supporting courses, and college requirements.
  • No course may be used to satisfy the requirements of more than one minor.

The GIS minor requires 15 credits of GEOG coursework. 6 credits may overlap with a student's major. For a full listing of the curriculum requirements please visit our Curriculum Guides & Advising Forms page. 

Summer 4 + 1 Program

Interested in the GIS minor but worried you don't have enough space in your degree plan? Try our Summer 4 + 1 Program! Complete the minor by enrolling in 2 Summer Session I courses, 2 Summer Session II courses, and 1 Fall course. An example minor plan is provided below, but email geog-advise [at] or schedule an advising appointment to learn about how to fit the minor requirements into YOUR degree plan today! 

Summer Session 1: May 30 - July 7, 2023

GEOG272 (Earth Observation Science): ONLINE TTH 4:00 pm 5:50 & - 6:00 8:00 pm (Lab)
GEOG373 (Geographic Information Systems): ONLINE MW 6:30 pm - 10:00 pm 

Summer Session 2: July 10 - August 18, 2023

GEOG306 (Quantitative Methods for Geographical & Environmental Sciences): ONLINE MW 6:30 pm - 10:00 pm
GEOG473 (GIS & Spatial Analysis): ONLINE Aysnchronous 

Fall 2023

GEOG475 (Computer Cartography): MW 3:00 - 3:50 pm with Lab F 9:00 am - 10:50 am or 1:00 - 2:50 pm

GIS summer 4+1 graphic