Contact: Michael Hinke (Co-coordinator)
Contact: Austin Troy (Co-coordinator)
Geospatial Information Science (GIS), known to some as "computer mapping," is used to store, manage, analyze, synthesize, and display spatial data and information. In the College of Architecture and Planning we use GIS to analyze and understand space, to answer the place-based questions posed by our stakeholders and our clients, and to create the planning- and research-oriented maps that are critical to communicating with our stakeholders. Our work with GIS in the college is built on the many advances in Geospatial Information Science over the last 40 years.
This certificate program is intended for motivated people with a strong interest in the application of GIS to the design and planning professions. It is targeted both at students currently enrolled in a University of Colorado degree program who wish to add a credential to their degree, and working professionals who do not wish to enroll as degree-seeking students, but who wish to pursue a certificate to improve job skills.
Students who earn this Certificate through the College of Architecture and Planning at the University of Colorado Denver will exit the program with the following:
- An understanding of GIS theory and concepts
- Technical mastery of general GIS methods using ArcGIS as well as familiarity with remote sensing
- Familiarity with common public geospatial data sources, as well as metadata standards
- Knowledge of data interoperability, including how to move data and maps from one software platform to another; examples of software includes Adobe Creative Suite, 3D Studio Max, SketchUp, RhinoTerrain, ArcMap, and Quantum GIS
- Specialized skills in geospatial technologies and methods related to the design and planning professions, including rendering and visualizations, infrastructure and transportation network analysis, cadastral mapping, site selection and analysis, geodesign, and many others.
GIS is a rapidly growing field and an increasingly important job skill. GIS skills are showing up as requirements for architects, landscape architects and planners. Our GIS Certificate holders are currently working as: environmental planners, transportation planners, city planners, urban designers, landscape architects and software developers.
A minimum of a 3.0 GPA in all GIS related course work is required to earn the GIS Certificate, and for certificate credit a B- or better is required in all GIS certificate courses.
Eligibility, Application, and Tuition and Fee Information
The certificate program is open to all. Applicants already enrolled in a University of Colorado degree program need only submit an internal application to the CAP GIS certificate program. Applicants who are not currently enrolled in a degree program must apply to CU Denver as non-degree seeking students and also submit an application to the CAP GIS certificate program. More details on the process are available from the coordinators.
Apply as a non-degree-seeking student in the Admissions area of the university website.
Find tuition and fee information in the Bursar's Office area of the university website.
Students interested in pursuing the GIS Certificate may start the conversation with their academic advisors, or one of the GIS coordinators. Michael Hinke serves as the director of the interdisciplinary GIS teaching lab on campus (the Facility for Advanced Spatial Technology), and he is happy to talk to students who need more information about classes taught in Geography and Civil Engineering.
The GIS Certificate is designed to supplement students' course work in their field of study. Degree seeking students in the College of Architecture and Planning wishing to pursue the GIS Certificate are expected to take 12 additional semester hours of course work to complete the certificate.
Achieving the GIS certificate in your degree program requires you to follow the appropriate advising sheet.
- Master of Landscape Architecture - GIS Advising Sheet
- Master of Urban and Regional Planning - GIS Advising Sheet
|Part 1: Introductory GIS Class|
|URPL 6250||GIS for Urban Planning||3|
|or LDAR 5540||Introduction to GIS|
|Part 2: Advanced GIS Methods Class|
|URPL 6260||Advanced Geo-Spatial Methods||3|
|Part 3: Remote Sensing|
|Select one of the following:||3|
|Remote Sensing I: Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing|
|Remote Sensing II: Advanced Remote Sensing|
Remote Sensing of the Environment (Boulder Campus course) 1
|Part 4: Specialized Advanced Classes|
|Select 9 semester hours of the following:||9|
|Cartography and Computer Mapping|
|GIS Applications for the Urban Environment|
|Environmental Modeling with Geographic Information Systems|
|Open Source Software for Geospatial Applications|
|GIS Programming and Automation|
|Deploying GIS Functionality on the Web|
|Hazard Mitigation and Vulnerability Assessment|
|Geospatial Data Development|
|GIS Relational Database Systems|
|Special Topics (Geomatics for GIS)|
|Special Topics: Landscape Architecture|
Any course from the Part 3 list (either track) not already used to fulfill the Part 3 requirement
Up to 3 semester hours from a studio course where intensive GIS is used. 2
Up to 3 semester hours for an internship using GIS in a planning or design context, also by petition. 3
Other relevant courses by permission
|Part 5: Portfolio|
Cost and financial aid availability may vary.
This must be done by submitting a petition to the coordinators describing the GIS activities undertaken.
Please see the coordinators before you start the process of looking for an internship.
Students pursuing the GIS Certificate are strongly encouraged to assemble a digital portfolio of GIS-related work undertaken in classes in the College of Architecture and Planning.
The Certificate Coordinators and the Academic Advisors have materials to help students prepare their portfolios. Students are encouraged to work with the GIS faculty to cater their portfolio to their intended careers.
Note: Students pursuing the GIS Certificate in the College of Architecture and Planning are expected to use GIS data and software in their design and planning related classes.
Students who have completed all of the requirements for the GIS Certificate must submit their GIS Certificate form at the start of the semester that they plan to graduate.