Geographic Information Systems | UC Davis Extension

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Geographic Information Systems

Learn from expert GIS instructors
From environmental, agricultural and natural resource management to engineering, city planning and public health, the use of Geographic information systems (GIS) has become a necessary tool in many professions. Gain a working knowledge of Geographic Information Systems technology, terminology and applications, focusing on the ArcGIS software package with beginning, intermediate and advanced courses from UC Davis Extension. Learn how to analyze and model the built and natural environments in order to inform resource management and policy decisions. Participate in hands-on exercises in an on-campus computer lab, and gain practical skills that you can put to use immediately. 

Whether you want to advance your career by developing a better understanding of GIS tools and capabilities, or you’re a manager looking to bring GIS to your organization, these courses explore GIS topics in depth, including GIS database design, Python programming, GIS for watershed analysis, the ArcGIS Geoprocessing toolset, ArcGIS ModelBuilder workflows, open source GIS platforms using QGIS, cartographic design and data analysis. Get experience working with real problems from instructors who are also professional users of GIS technology in a variety of professions. 

GIS courses may be taken individually or as part of the Geographic Information Systems Professional Concentration.

Career Outlook
Almost all industries utilize Geographic Information Systems at an ever-increasing rate. GIS professionals can range from cartographers and geographers to GIS analysts who perform spatial analysis. The following professions are a few that require or benefit from knowledge of GIS: 

  • GIS Specialists: The median salary for GIS specialists was $49,279 as of April 2016.
  • GIS Analysts: The median salary for GIS analysts was $50,071 as of April 2016.
  • Cartographers: The median salary for cartographers was $60,930 in 2014.
  • Geographers: The median salary for geographers was $76,420 in 2014.
  • GIS Manager: The national average salary for GIS managers was $86,039 as of April 2016.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook