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Geographic Information Science Impact

Geographic Information Science

A Geographic Information Science minor produces graduates who think spatially, are better able to interpret data, and critically apply theory and practice across disciplines.

Fairmont State University students may specialize in Geographic Information Science (GIS) and spatial analysis by completing a Minor in Geographic Information Science. The minor offers students in all fields the opportunity to add a competitive big data minor to their current area of study with the addition of geospatial analysis, spatial literacy communication, and cartographic mapping skills. The minor in Geographic Information Science is located in the College of Liberal Arts/Department of Behavioral Science and is physically housed in the Spatial Science GIS Lab in Hardway Hall.

Satellite image of the United States at night

Employment Opportunities

Geospatial fields are among the fastest-growing STEM careers and open potential career advancement in every field. Considered a bridge discipline, a GIS Minor adds an applied spatial behavioral data science, focus to all majors.

"In every field, space and place are vital. GIS has allowed me to take the foundational knowledge, skills, and professional network connections I made at Fairmont State University and build a career in the geospatial arena. I have worked in architecture and historic preservation, state government, and economic development. GIS is increasingly becoming an integral component to many professions."

Jessica Mathai, PhD, GISP
Senior Geospatial Specialist and Subject Matter Expert in GISfor Qualitest, international software testing FirstGen Alumni Fairmont State University, Architectural Engineering

Required Courses

GEOG 2210 Introduction to Geography 3 Hours
GEOG 2213 21st Century Geography 3 Hours
GEOG 3316 Introduction to Geospatial Methods 3 Hours
GEOG 4490 Geographic Information Science Capstone 3 Hours
A CGI globe with lines connecting major cities and points of interest
Aerial image of the Fairmont State University campus


There are no prerequisites or advanced technical knowledge needed for this minor, but students should possess a willingness to learn technological skills. Students should discuss their elective plans with their advisor and the Geographic Information Science Committee for approval. Students must meet any existing prerequisite elective requirements before taking courses.

Barbara L. MacLennan, PhD

  101 Hardway Building