2020-2021 Academic Catalog 
    
    Nov 30, 2021  
2020-2021 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Geographic Information Science, MS


Overview


The Master of Science program in Geographic Information Science (MSGIS) prepares students to become professionals in careers where they apply the world’s most advanced computer mapping and spatial analysis technologies to address crucial issues concerning socioeconomic development and environment.

A collaborative program between the Department of International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE), the Graduate School of Geography and Clark Labs, the MSGIS program is unique is a variety of ways. It focuses specifically on applications of geospatial technologies to problems of sustainable development and the environment, such as: conservation, land use / land cover change, public health and environmental justice, food security, humanitarian assistance and agricultural development, global change and Earth system monitoring, and climate change adaptation.

Clark University also has a 30+ year history of software development for GIS and remote sensing. Clark Labs (www.clarklabs.org) produces the TerrSet geospatial monitoring and modeling system that includes the IDRISI GIS and Image Processing System, the Land Change Modeler, the Earth Trends Modeler, the Habitat and Biodiversity Modeler, the Ecosystem Services Modeler, and the Climate Change Adaptation Modeler. The software has been distributed to over 100,000 users worldwide. Therefore, MSGIS students have a unique opportunity to learn the analytical power of raster GIS using TerrSet/IDRISI in their course work and research. In the past, many MSGIS students have had the opportunity to work at Clark Labs as software testers, programmers or researchers, depending on each student’s qualifications and the needs of Clark Labs.

Numerous opportunities exist for students to conduct collaborative research with IDCE and Geography faculty as they pursue their research on issues such as conservation GIS, public health, water resources, land use change, the drivers and impacts of agricultural change, software system development, environmental degradation, and environmental justice. Many MSGIS students have co-published findings of their research with faculty members in respected journals in the field.

Course of Study


Clark University offers the Master of Science degree in Geographic Information Science organized according to four areas of concentration:

1. GIS for Development and Environment

2. Conservation Applications

3. Environmental Remote Sensing

4. Community and Global Health Applications

Each concentration has its own requirements, and students successfully completing the program will have their area of concentration noted on the degree.  All concentrations require a minimum of 12 graduate course units to graduate. The curriculum for each concentration is designed to allow full-time students to complete the program in four semesters.

Within each concentration, students are given the option of two tracks - a research track or an internship track.

The research track is suitable for students who intend to eventually pursue a Ph.D. degree, or who envision working for an organization in a research capacity. The research track requires two units specifically focused on their research and a conference presentation. In addition, students on the research track typically spend the summer following their second semester working on their research.

The internship track is designed for students who wish to gain practical experience working with an organization that uses GIS and remote sensing and who plan to spend a career in applied GIS. This track requires the completion of an approved internship during the summer after the second semester, followed by a report and presentation during the third semester.

 Students must select their concentration and track in spring semester of year 1, and submit concentration declaration form to their academic advisor during academic advising meeting in Spring semester of Year 1

Concentration in GIS for Development and Environment


The concentration in Geographic Information Science for Development and Environment is intended for students interested in applications of geospatial technologies to address the challenge of sustainable development. The issues are many, ranging from natural resource development while protecting biodiversity, smart development and planning of infrastructure to social issues such as disaster management, humanitarian assistance, water and sanitation, poverty and hunger alleviation, climate change impacts, conflicts, and migration.

The GISDE concentration builds upon the broad strengths of the Department of International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE), the Graduate School of Geography and Clark Labs. Accordingly, this concentration allows considerable flexibility in tailoring an individual program, crafted with the assistance of a faculty advisor.

Curriculum

Candidates for the MS in Geographic Information Science specializing in GIS for Development and Environment are required to complete 12 units, including four units of required courses and associated prerequisites.

Required Courses:

GEOG 397 Advanced Raster GIS  

IDCE 388 Advanced Vector GIS  

IDCE 391 M.S. GIS Professional Seminar  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30306 GIS for International Development in Practice  (0.5 unit)

Students must also take at least one of the following courses:

IDCE 30229 Program Monitoring and Evaluation Fundamentals  

IDCE 30291 Qualitative Research Methods  

IDCE 361 Project Management for Social Change  

Students in the research track are also required to take:

GEOG 399 Directed Study   or IDCE 399 Directed Study  (1 unit - Fall Semester of Year 2)

IDCE 30213 Master’s Final Research Paper  (1 unit - Spring Semester of Year 2)

Students in the research track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of Research Proposal signed by research advisor by the last day of Spring semester of Year 1. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed research paper by the first week of March in Spring semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about research at a professional conference during Fall or Spring semester of Year 2. Send MSGIS Program Coordinator conference name, dates, location, and presentation abstract

Students in the internship track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Proposal approved by the academic advisor before the beginning of internship (by the end of Spring semester of year 1). Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Report approved by the academic advisor by the end of Fall Semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed MSGIS Internship Supervisor Evaluation form in Fall Semester of Year 2. Internship supervisor should send the form digitally to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about internship during GIS Week in Fall semester of Year 2

Prerequisites:

The following is a list of prerequisites for required courses. Students who can demonstrate that they have taken comparable courses at other institutions can be exempted from these prerequisites upon the approval of the program Coordinator. However, this does not reduce the requirement for a total of 12 units for completion of the degree.

IDCE 310 Intro to Geographic Information Science  

GEOG 311 Introduction to Quantitative Methods  

GEOG 383 Introduction to Remote Sensing  

Highly Recommended Electives:   

GEOG 346 Geospatial Analysis with R  

IDCE 302 Python Programming  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30274 Computer Programming for GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30262 Web Mapping and Open Source GIS  

IDCE 305 Innovations in Humanitarian and International Development Data  

IDCE 30154 Mega Development: Exploring The Nexus Between Natural Resource Extraction, Infrastructure Development and Environment  

GEOG 382 Advanced Remote Sensing  

Other Electives:

IDCE 30393 Social Applications of GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30229 Program Monitoring and Evaluation Fundamentals  

IDCE 361 Project Management for Social Change  

IDCE 377 Approaches to Global Health  

IDCE 30330 Approaches to Community Health  

IDCE 30109 Introduction to Epidemiology  

IDCE 30360 Spatial Analysis for Health  

IDCE 332 Sustainable Development Assessment and Planning  

IDCE 30231 Humanitarian Assistances in Complex Emergencies/Disasters  

IDCE 30103 Networks and Analytics of Development  

GEOG 389 Conservation GIS  

GEOG 336 Wildlife Conservation GIS Research Seminar  

GEOG 332 Landscape Ecology  

GEOG 386 Special Topics  Habitat Modeling (0.5 unit)

GEOG 323 Forest Ecology and Management Seminar              

GEOG 333 Terrestrial Ecosystems and Global Change  

GEOG 347 Intermediate Quantitative Methods in Geography  

GEOG 349 Advanced Topics in Spatial Analysis  

GEOG 352 GIS & Land Change Science          

GEOG 360 GIS & Land Change Models         

GEOG 363 The Climate System and Global Environmental Change  

GEOG 378 Emerging Issues in Climate Change Science  

GEOG 379 GIS & Map Comparison  

GEOG 387 New Methods in Earth Observation  

GEOG 391 Innovations in Earth Observations  

GEOG 392 Remote Sensing of Global Environmental Change  

Students may also take courses offered by the Graduate School of Geography or the other four graduate programs in IDCE (International Development, Community Development and Planning, Community and Global Health, and Environmental Science and Policy) or in other departments, as approved by their academic advisor. Please view Clark’s official Academic Catalog www.clarku.edu/academiccatalog for a complete listing of course offerings.

Students on the internship track can optionally register for a 0.5 or 1.0 unit internship (IDCE398 or GEOG398) with their academic advisor either during the summer when they take the internship, or in the fall semester immediately following. Note that international students taking their internship as CPT must register for the internship course (0.5 or 1.0 unit).

Concentration in Conservation Applications


Conservation GIS is concerned with the application of Geographic Information Systems and related geospatial technologies to the needs of Conservation Biology, Landscape Ecology, Wildlife Management and Conservation Planning. The MSGIS in Conservation Applications builds upon the history of close partnerships between Clark University and Clark Labs with organizations such as Conservation International, The Nature Conservancy, the Wildlife Conservation Society and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. Through these relationships, for example, Clark Labs has developed a distinctive set of geospatial software tools for Conservation such as the Land Change Modeler, the Habitat and Biodiversity Modeler, the Climate Change Adaptation Modeler, the Ecosystem Services Modeler and the Earth Trends Modeler. Clark is also in the process of becoming the home of the New England chapter of the Society for Conservation GIS.

The objectives of the Master of Science in Conservation Applications are to gain spatial analysis skills required in ecological and conservation applications including: vector and raster spatial data analysis, analysis of image time series, remote sensing applied to environmental monitoring, GIS programming skills, spatial conservation planning, spatial modeling of species distributions, and effective map communication.

Curriculum

Candidates for the MS in Geographic Information Science specializing in Conservation Applications are required to complete 12  graduate course units, normally including 6-8 required courses.

Required Courses:

GEOG 397 Advanced Raster GIS  

IDCE 388 Advanced Vector GIS  

IDCE 391 M.S. GIS Professional Seminar  (0.5 unit)

GEOG 332 Landscape Ecology  

GEOG 386 Special Topics  Habitat Modeling (0.5 unit)

GEOG 389 Conservation GIS  

Students in the research track are also required to take:

GEOG 399 or IDCE 399 MS Directed Research (1 unit - Fall Semester of Year 2)

IDCE 30213 MS Research Final Requirement (1 unit - Spring Semester of Year 2)

Students in the research track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of Research Proposal signed by research advisor by the last day of Spring semester of Year 1. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed research paper by the first week of March in Spring semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about research at a professional conference during Fall or Spring semester of Year 2. Send MSGIS Program Coordinator conference name, dates, location, and presentation abstract

Students in the internship track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Proposal approved by the academic advisor before the beginning of internship (by the end of Spring semester of year 1). Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Report approved by the academic advisor by the end of Fall Semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed MSGIS Internship Supervisor Evaluation form in Fall Semester of Year 2. Internship supervisor should send the form digitally to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about internship during GIS Week in Fall semester of Year 2

Prerequisites:

The following is a list of prerequisites for required courses. Students who can demonstrate that they have taken comparable courses at other institutions can be exempted from these prerequisites upon the approval of the program Coordinator. However, this does not reduce the requirement for a total of 12 units for completion of the degree.

IDCE 310 Intro to Geographic Information Science  

GEOG 311 Introduction to Quantitative Methods  

GEOG 383 Introduction to Remote Sensing  

Highly Recommended Electives:  

GEOG 346 Geospatial Analysis with R  

IDCE 302 Python Programming  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30274 Computer Programming for GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30262 Web Mapping and Open Source GIS  

GEOG 336 Wildlife Conservation GIS Research Seminar  

Other Electives:

IDCE 305 Innovations in Humanitarian and International Development Data  

GEOG 323 Forest Ecology and Management Seminar       

GEOG 333 Terrestrial Ecosystems and Global Change                   

GEOG 360 GIS & Land Change Models  

GEOG 363 The Climate System and Global Environmental Change     

GEOG 378 Emerging Issues in Climate Change Science  

GEOG 379 GIS & Map Comparison  

IDCE 30154 Mega Development: Exploring The Nexus Between Natural Resource Extraction, Infrastructure Development and Environment  

GEOG 382 Advanced Remote Sensing  

GEOG 387 New Methods in Earth Observation  

GEOG 391 Innovations in Earth Observations  

GEOG 392 Remote Sensing of Global Environmental Change     

BIOL 306 Advanced Biostatistics  Not offered regularly

BIOL 316 Ecology         

BIOL 358 Small Scale Land Conservation in Massachusetts  

Students may also take courses offered by the Graduate School of Geography or the other four graduate programs in IDCE (International Development, Community Development and Planning, Community and Global Health, and Environmental Science and Policy) or in other departments, as approved by their academic advisor. Please view Clark’s official Academic Catalog www.clarku.edu/academiccatalog for a complete listing of course offerings.

Students on the internship track can optionally register for a 0.5 or 1.0 unit internship (IDCE398 or GEOG398) with their academic advisor either during the summer when they take the internship, or in the fall semester immediately following. Note that international students taking their internship as CPT must register for the internship course (0.5 or 1.0 unit).

Concentration in Environmental Remote Sensing


Remote Sensing is the scientific discipline concerned with the acquisition of environmental data at a distance (typically from imaging sensors on satellites and aircraft) and their subsequent analysis to yield information, typically in map form. MSGIS concentration  in Environmental Remote Sensing focuses on the analysis of image data for environmental applications, particularly related to earth system science, natural resource inventory and ecological/conservation applications. Faculty, students and staff are involved not only in the application of remote sensing to crucial environmental concerns, but also, in some cases, in the development of new image processing procedures and software implementations.

MSGIS concentration in Environmental Remote Sensing places a strong emphasis on acquiring the quantitative analysis and problem solving skills necessary to function as a professional analyst. The products of remote sensing image analysis are almost universally in map form. Thus the program also puts emphasis on acquiring the GIS skills necessary for the development of end products, and most of the courses have an applied project component as an integral element.

Clark University continues to have strong partnerships with many organizations that have remote sensing image analysis needs, including the Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), the GIMMS laboratory at NASA, the Wildlife Conservation Society, Conservation International, Digital Globe and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

Curriculum

Candidates for the MS in Geographic Information Science specializing Remote Sensing of the Environment are required to complete 12 graduate course units, including 3.5 units of required courses and associated prerequisites.

Required Courses:

IDCE 388 Advanced Vector GIS  

GEOG 397 Advanced Raster GIS  

IDCE 391 M.S. GIS Professional Seminar  (0.5 unit)

GEOG 382 Advanced Remote Sensing  

Students in the research track are also required to take:

GEOG 399 or IDCE 399 MS Directed Research (1 unit - Fall Semester of Year 2)

IDCE 30213 MS Final Requirement: Research Track (1 unit - Spring Semester of Year 2)

Students in the research track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of Research Proposal signed by research advisor by the last day of Spring semester of Year 1. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed research paper by the first week of March in Spring semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about research at a professional conference during Fall or Spring semester of Year 2. Send MSGIS Program Coordinator conference name, dates, location, and presentation abstract

Students in the internship track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Proposal approved by the academic advisor before the beginning of internship (by the end of Spring semester of year 1). Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Report approved by the academic advisor by the end of Fall Semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed MSGIS Internship Supervisor Evaluation form in Fall Semester of Year 2. Internship supervisor should send the form digitally to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about internship during GIS Week in Fall semester of Year 2

Prerequisites:

The following is a list of prerequisites for required courses. Students who can demonstrate that they have taken comparable courses at other institutions can be exempted from these prerequisites upon the approval of the program Coordinator. However, this does not reduce the requirement for a total of 12 units for completion of the degree.

1.         IDCE 310 Intro to Geographic Information Science  

2.         GEOG 311 Introduction to Quantitative Methods  

3.         GEOG 383 Introduction to Remote Sensing  

Highly Recommended Electives:

IDCE 302 Python Programming  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30274 Computer Programming for GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30262 Web Mapping and Open Source GIS  

GEOG 346 Geospatial Analysis with R  

Other Electives:

Students may select from any relevant graduate-credit courses in Geography or IDCE to fill out their requirement of 12 units for the degree. However, the following is a list of elective courses with a strong focus on Remote Sensing or GIS.

GEOG 392 Remote Sensing of Global Environmental Change  

GEOG 387 New Methods in Earth Observation  

GEOG 391 Innovations in Earth Observations  

GEOG 330 Introduction to Species Distribution Modeling  

GEOG 332 Landscape Ecology  

GEOG 336 Wildlife Conservation GIS Research Seminar  

GEOG 352 GIS & Land Change Science  

GEOG 360 GIS & Land Change Models  

GEOG 379 GIS & Map Comparison  

Students may also take courses offered by the Graduate School of Geography or the other four graduate programs in IDCE (International Development, Community Development and Planning, Global and Community Health, and Environmental Science and Policy) or in other departments, as approved by their academic advisor. Please view Clark’s official Academic Catalog www.clarku.edu/academiccatalog for a complete listing of course offerings.

Students on the internship track can optionally register for a 0.5 or 1.0 unit internship (IDCE 398 or GEOG 398) with their academic advisor either during the summer when they take the internship, or in the fall semester immediately following. Note that international students taking their internship as CPT must register for the internship course (0.5 or 1.0 unit).

Concentration in Community and Global Health Applications


The concentration in GIS for Community and Global Health Applications is intended for students interested in applications of geospatial technologies in areas of community and global health. The program is aimed at individuals who plan to work as GIS Analysts/Specialists in international health organizations (such as WHO, International Red Cross), federal, state and local government agencies (CDC, FEMA, state and municipal health departments), NGOs (Partners in Health, Planned Parenthood, etc.) or research organizations and Universities (Schools of Public Health, Health GIS Research Labs).

Putting information into a spatial context allows exploring the spatial relationships among health and behavior indicators, health outcomes, environmental risk factors, and demographic and cultural characteristics at a particular location. GIS and remote sensing allow visualizing and analyzing spatial patterns of disease distribution, accounting for spatial dependencies in the data, and investigating how health outcomes and processes that drive them differ from place to place. GIS maps may indicate connections and trends that would be otherwise not readily apparent, if the data were not integrated together via spatial overlays. Graduates with this concentration will have a solid understanding of health issues facing communities (both domestic and global), and of the policy environments affecting global and community health. They will also develop competency in a wide range of GIS analytical methods, with particular emphasis on techniques applicable to community and global health issues.

Faculty this concentration have developed strong partnerships with local and global organizations, including the City Worcester (Department of Public Health), Family Health Center of Worcester, Inc., Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Departments of Obstetrics/Gynecology and Pediatrics, University of Massachusetts Medical School/UMass Memorial Health Care, Partners in Health, and others. Several MS students have done summer internships in some of these organizations or worked as research assistants with faculty on health-related GIS projects, and co-published academic papers in peer-reviewed journals.

Curriculum

Candidates for the MS in Geographic Information Science with concentration in Community and Global Health are required to complete 12 graduate course units, including 4.5 units of required courses and associated prerequisites.

Required Courses:

IDCE 388 Advanced Vector GIS  

GEOG 397 Advanced Raster GIS  

IDCE 391 M.S. GIS Professional Seminar  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30360 Spatial Analysis for Health  

Students must also take at least one of the following courses:

IDCE 377 Approaches to Global Health  

IDCE 30330 Approaches to Community Health  

IDCE 30264 Environmental and Social Epidemiology  

Students in the research track are also required to take:

GEOG 399 or IDCE 399 MS Directed Research (1 unit - Fall Semester of Year 2)

IDCE30213 MS Final Research Requirement (1 unit - Spring Semester of Year 2)

Students in the research track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of Research Proposal signed by research advisor by the last day of Spring semester of Year 1. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed research paper by the first week of March in Spring semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about research at a professional conference during Fall or Spring semester of Year 2. Send MSGIS Program Coordinator conference name, dates, location, and presentation abstract

Students in the internship track also have the following non-course requirements that must be fulfilled before graduation clearance will be given:

  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Proposal approved by the academic advisor before the beginning of internship (by the end of Spring semester of year 1). Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of MSGIS Internship Report approved by the academic advisor by the end of Fall Semester of Year 2. Send a digital copy to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Submission of a completed and signed MSGIS Internship Supervisor Evaluation form in Fall Semester of Year 2. Internship supervisor should send the form digitally to MSGIS Program Coordinator
  • Presentation about internship during GIS Week in Fall semester of Year 2

Prerequisites:

The following is a list of prerequisites for required courses. Students who can demonstrate that they have taken comparable courses at other institutions can be exempted from these prerequisites upon the approval of the program Coordinator. However, this does not reduce the requirement for a total of 12 units for completion of the degree.

IDCE 310 Intro to Geographic Information Science  

GEOG 311 Introduction to Quantitative Methods  

GEOG 383 Introduction to Remote Sensing  

Highly Recommended Electives:    

GEOG 346 Geospatial Analysis with R  

IDCE 302 Python Programming  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30274 Computer Programming for GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30262 Web Mapping and Open Source GIS  

IDCE 30393 Social Applications of GIS  (0.5 unit)

Other Electives:

IDCE 30229 Program Monitoring and Evaluation Fundamentals  

IDCE 361 Project Management for Social Change  

IDCE 30154 Mega Development: Exploring The Nexus Between Natural Resource Extraction, Infrastructure Development and Environment  

IDCE 305 Innovations in Humanitarian and International Development Data  

IDCE 377 Approaches to Global Health  

IDCE 30330 Approaches to Community Health  

IDCE 308 Health (in)Equity: Social Determinants and Policy Solutions  

GEOG 382 Advanced Remote Sensing  

GEOG 360 GIS & Land Change Models  

GEOG 379 GIS & Map Comparison  

GEOG 330 Introduction to Species Distribution Modeling  

GEOG 332 Landscape Ecology  

GEOG 336 Wildlife Conservation GIS Research Seminar  

Students may also take courses offered by the Graduate School of Geography or the other four graduate programs in IDCE (International Development, Community Development and Planning, Community and Global Health, and Environmental Science and Policy) or in other departments, as approved by their academic advisor. Please view Clark’s official Academic Catalog www.elarku.edu/academiccatalog for a complete listing of course offerings.

Students on the internship track can optionally register for a 0.5 or 1.0 unit internship (IDCE398 or GEOG398) with their academic advisor either during the summer when they take the internship, or in the fall semester immediately following. Note that international students taking their internship as CPT must register for the internship course (0.5 or 1.0 unit).

Concentration in Geography-ADP (Accelerated Degree Program only)


Clark’s accelerated degree program offers a BA/MS option in GIS, which is simply the MSGIS degree Geography-APD concentration. This program in Geographic Information Science is intended exclusively for ADP students, focusing on applications of geospatial technologies to address a range of circumstances, as articulated through the final year of the Bachelor’s degree and during the Master’s program year.

The MS-GIS Geography-ADP concentration builds upon the broad strengths of the Graduate School of Geography, Clark Labs, and the Department of international Development, Community and Environment (IDCE). Accordingly, it allows considerable flexibility in. tailoring an individual program, crafted with the assistance of a faculty advisor.

Curriculum

Candidates for the MS in Geographic Information Science are required to complete 12 graduate level units, as well as associated prerequisites.

Prerequisites I (not counted towards the 12 required units)

GEOG 297 Honors  (or other subject) (Students must complete an honor’s thesis with two semesters of honor’s units)

GEOG 190 Introduction to Geographic Information Science  

GEOG 383 Introduction to Remote Sensing  

Prerequisites II (counted toward the Master’s program 12-unit total):

GEOG 397 Advanced Raster GIS  

IDCE 388 Advanced Vector GIS  

Two 300-level Geography GIS-related courses (two units total; from below list of electives)

Post-BA Graduation Coursework:

Summer after BA Graduation:

GEOG 398 Internship  ((Summer Internship)

Fifth Year Coursework

Students in the research track are required to take:

GEOG 399 Directed Study  -MS Thesis Directed Research (2 units - one each semester)

At least four additional courses from the list of electives, below (minimum 2 courses/units per semester)

Summer of Fifth Year:

GEOG 399 Directed Study  - Thesis Directed Research (1 unit)

Students in the internship track are required to take:

GEOG 398 Internship  (2 units - one each Semester)

At least five additional courses from the list of electives, below (minimum 2 courses/units per semester)

Internship Reports

At the end of each semester of the internship track, students must complete an Internship Report evaluating their experience with the organization they interned for during that semester. The students must also send their internship supervisor a Supervisor Evaluation Form in order for the supervisor to evaluate the student and their performance/contribution throughout the prior semester.

Highly Recommended Electives:

GEOG 346 Geospatial Analysis with R  

IDCE 302 Python Programming  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30274 Computer Programming for GIS  (0.5 unit)

IDCE 30262 Web Mapping and Open Source GIS  

IDCE 30306 GIS for International Development in Practice  (0.5 unit)

GEOG 382 Advanced Remote Sensing  

IDCE 391 M.S. GIS Professional Seminar  (0.5 unit)

Other Electives:

IDCE 30393 Social Applications of GIS  

IDCE 30229 Program Monitoring and Evaluation Fundamentals  

IDCE 361 Project Management for Social Change  

IDCE 377 Approaches to Global Health  

IDCE 30330 Approaches to Community Health Approaches to Community Health  

IDCE 30264 Environmental and Social Epidemiology  

IDCE 30360 Spatial Analysis for Health  

IDCE 332 Sustainable Development Assessment and Planning  

IDCE 30231 Humanitarian Assistances in Complex Emergencies/Disasters  

IDCE 30103 Networks and Analytics of Development  

GEOG 389 Conservation GIS  

GEOG 336 Wildlife Conservation GIS Research Seminar  

GEOG 332 Landscape Ecology  

GEOG 386 Special Topics  Habitat Modeling (0.5 unit)

GEOG 323 Forest Ecology and Management Seminar  

GEOG 333 Terrestrial Ecosystems and Global Change  

GEOG 347 Intermediate Quantitative Methods in Geography   

GEOG 363 The Climate System and Global Environmental Change  

GEOG 352 GIS & Land Change Science  

GEOG 378 Emerging Issues in Climate Change Science  

GEOG 379 GIS & Map Comparison  

GEOG 387 New Methods in Earth Observation  

GEOG 391 Innovations in Earth Observations  

GEOG 392 Remote Sensing of Global Environmental Change  

Students may also take courses offered by the Graduate School of Geography or the other four graduate programs in IDCE (International Development, Community Development and Planning, Community and Global Health, and Environmental Science and Policy) or in other departments, as approved by their academic advisor. Please view Clark’s official Academic Catalog www.clarku.edulacademiccatalog for a complete listing of course offerings.

Tracks


The MSGIS program offers two tracks - internship and research. Students are encouraged to select the option that best suits their anticipated professional aspirations

Research Track

For this option, the student develops a preliminary research proposal as part of IDCE 391. This proposal may be refined in the second semester and must be signed by the selected research advisor (also known as the first reader). This final proposal must be handed in to the MSGIS program coordinator by the end of the second semester. The research is then performed under the guidance of the research advisor in the summer and following academic year. Students must register for 1.0 unit for either IDCE 399 or GEOG 399 in the third semester and IDCE 30213 with their research advisor in the fourth semester. This final research project results in a paper that has a length and format appropriate for a professional peer-reviewed journal article. The format for the MS paper is available IDCE391’s Moodle page. Students are also required to make a Presentation about their research at a conference (e.g., AAG; NEArc; Clark Multidisciplinary Graduate Student Conference, etc.) This option is appropriate for students who want to engage in the creation of new methods in GIS or innovative applications of existing GIS methods. This option is recommended for students who envision working in a research setting or who may wish to eventually pursue a Ph.D.

Internship Track

For this option, the student applies to GIS or remote sensing-focused internships as part of IDCE 391. Students must complete an Internship Proposal form (included in this Handbook) and obtain approval from their academic advisor who will serve as student’s internship advisor. The student will perform the internship during the summer, and write an internship report in early fall (report guidelines included in this Handbook). Students should send this report to their academic advisor for approval. Approval of the Internship report by the academic advisor is a graduation requirement. Students are also required to make a Presentation about their internship during GIS Week (third week in November).

Faculty


YELENA OGNEVA-HIMMELBERGER, Ph.D.

Coordinator, MSGIS Program

Associate Professor of IDCE

Research interests: Health applications of GIS; environmental justice and GIS; social applications of GIS; spatial statistics; open source GIS

 

LYNDON ESTES, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Geography

Research interests: Agricultural development in sub-Saharan Africa, Conservation, Remote Sensing, Agricultural modeling, Open source software development with an emphasis on R

 

ROBERT GILMORE PONTIUS Jr., Ph.D.

Professor of Geography

Research interests: Geographic Information Science, quantitative environmental modeling, land change science, spatial statistics

 

SHADROCK ROBERTS, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of IDCE

Research interests: GIS for international development and humanitarian assistance, crowdsourced geodata, and digital geographies.

 

JOHN ROGAN, Ph.D.

Professor of Geography

Research interests: GIS, Remote Sensing, Landscape Ecology, land cover change monitoring, fire

 

FlORENCIA SANGERMANO, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Geography

Research interests: Conservation Biology, GIS, Remote Sensing and Landscape Ecology

 

Courses