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This graduate certificate program is for persons employed in geospatial intelligence applications (i.e., federal agency and/ or corporate or association personnel) or those interested in entering this field. Our program offers fundamental knowledge on geospatial intelligence and the ability to apply this knowledge to a diverse range of constantly evolving geospatial intelligence situations. This program has been accredited by the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation.
This graduate certificate is also available as a fully online program. For more information, visit George Mason University’s Office of Distance Education.
The graduate certificate in geospatial intelligence may be pursued on a part-time or full-time basis, and qualifies for Title IV Federal Financial Aid. For more information about program graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our disclosure information page at http://irr.gmu.edu/gedt/Geospatial_Intelligence/Gedt.html.
Applicants to this graduate certificate program should hold a BA or BS degree in a discipline related to the certificate’s theme from a regionally accredited university with a minimum GPA of 3.00. To apply, prospective students should complete the George Mason University Graduate Application. Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for study as specified in the Graduate Admission Policies section of this catalog. In addition, applicants to this certificate program must submit a current résumé. GRE scores and letters of recommendation are not required but will considerably strengthen an application, if available. TOEFL scores are required of all international applicants.
Applicants should have undergraduate backgrounds that include courses in differential and integral calculus, and they should possess working knowledge of a computer programming language. Depending on the background of the individual student, the coordinator may recommend remedial or preparatory courses tailored to the student’s needs.
Students may not pursue this certificate concurrent with any other graduate degree program or certificate program offered by COS because this certificate will charge students at a differential (premium) tuition rate. However, students enrolled in academic programs outside COS may enroll in this certificate program concurrently.
Students may transfer no more than 3 credits into the certificate program with the approval of the academic director.
Your application to the program has to include the following items:
- A completed application form
- Transcripts (sent directly from your previous academic unit to GMU)
- One-page goal statement
- Application fee
The Geospatial Intelligence Graduate Certificate requires a total of 18 credits, or 6 courses. These are comprised of five mandatory core courses and one elective.
Core Courses (15 credits)
The mandatory core courses reflect the three key science emphases areas of this program, namely geospatial image analysis, spatial analysis, and information technology:
- GGS 553 – Geographic Information Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 650 – Introduction to GIS Algorithms and Programming Credits: 3 or GGS 664 – Spatial Data Structures Credits: 3 or GGS 692 – Web-based Geographic Information Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 680 – Earth Image Processing Credits: 3
- GGS 684 – Selected Topics in Geospatial Intelligence Credits: 3
- GGS 685 – Capstone Course in Geoinformatics Credits: 3
Students with exceptional background and demonstrated knowledge of material may request substitution of up to two mandatory courses with the approval of the Academic Director. Mandatory courses may only be substituted by another course in the same concentration area. The Select Topics and Capstone courses cannot be substituted by another course. Final course selection requires the approval of the Academic Director.
Elective Course (3 credits)
For students with exceptional circumstances (i.e. working on a specific project), other, additional elective courses may be considered, if approved by the academic director, in areas of advanced knowledge, i.e. advanced courses already offered in existing course sequences.
Choose one additional course from the following:
- GGS 563 – Advanced Geographic Information Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 579 – Remote Sensing Credits: 3
- GGS 631 – Spatial Agent-Based Models of Human-Environment Interactions Credits: 3
- GGS 650 – Introduction to GIS Algorithms and Programming Credits: 3
- GGS 658 – Terrain Mapping Credits: 3
- GGS 664 – Spatial Data Structures Credits: 3
- GGS 671 – Algorithms and Modeling in GIS Credits: 3
- GGS 675 – Location Science Credits: 3
- GGS 692 – Web-based Geographic Information Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 740 – Hyperspectral Imaging Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 772 – Cloud Geographic Information Systems Credits: 3
- GGS 787 – Scientific Data Mining for Geoinformatics Credits: 3
Regarding the IT course of this certificate, students with substantial IT background may substitute INFS 519 with one of the following courses:
- CS 580 Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
- CS 583 Analysis of Algorithms
- INFS 614 Database Management
- INFS 623 Classical and Web Information Retrieval
- INFS 755 Introduction to Data Mining
- INFS 785 Database Management for Homeland Security
- INFS 795 Special Topics in Data Mining Applications
- CS 750 / IT 750 Theory and Applications of Data Mining
- CS 686 Image Processing and Applications
- CS 775 / IT 844 Advanced Pattern recognition
An average grade of B or better is required for certificate award.
In addition to standard, semester-long sessions, certificate courses are also offered as intensive week-long modules.
The Academic Director and other faculty will be available periodically, at mutually agreed upon times, to offer students guidance in selecting courses, Intelligence areas to emphasize, and guidance on deriving maximum benefits from the Certificate program.
In compliance with USGIF accreditation criteria, our graduates will be able to:
- Apply knowledge of earth image processing/remote sensing, geographic information science, computer science, and analytic processes to geointelligence
- Find and interpret data, and conduct complex analysis tasks
- Function effectively in a collaborative environment
- Select, use, synthesize, and demonstrate the techniques, skills, and tools necessary to solve geospatial intelligence problems.
This graduate certificate program establishes an introductory level certificate in Geospatial Intelligence. Graduates of this certificate program have two options to continue their studies. They can either pursue another certificate to acquire a specialization in geospatial intelligence (image analyst, or spatial analyst), or they may take additional courses at Mason to complete a MS degree in a relevant field (e.g. the MS degrees offered by the Geography and GeoInformation Science Department. Students wishing to pursue an even higher degree could continue for the PhD degree in a related field within Masons College of Science (e.g. a Ph.D. in ESGS).
Academic Catalog for Previous Years
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For further information please contact the program director: firstname.lastname@example.org