Program Overview

ship yardThe UW Master of GIS online program is designed to help you launch or advance your career in the GIS field with a specialty in sustainability management. You'll build advanced spatial thinking skills using GIS techniques and learn to solve sustainability problems through a systems thinking approach that takes social, economic and environmental factors into account. 

Offered by the UW Department of Geography in collaboration with UW Continuum College, the Master of GIS program provides the educational background needed to apply for professional certification from the GIS Certification Institute. While certification is not required to work as a GIS professional, it signifies a level of professional expertise.

Program Format

The UW Master of GIS is a two-year, 40-credit program designed for working professionals. Students begin their studies in autumn and continue to take one course at a time for the next eight quarters. The final course is a capstone project, where you'll work in small teams to use GIS to address a sustainability challenge facing an organization in the community.

The program is delivered completely online, giving students the flexibility to study on their own schedule and at their own location.

Who Should Apply

The Master of GIS program is geared to those who want to enter or advance in the GIS field with a specialty in sustainability management. Applicants typically have at least one year of professional work experience, though we also welcome applicants with internship experience in GIS or who have worked closely with colleagues who are GIS users or developers. For details about admissions requirements, see Admissions.