University of Minnesota
Master of Geographic Information Science

Master of Geographic Information Science

Master of Geographic Information Science

Michael Plante

“Given the flexibility of the program, I strongly recommend it to working professionals, as well as those seeking a traditional full-time master’s program.”

Michael Plante
MGIS 2003, Senior Hydrogeologist, Leggette, Brashears & Graham, Inc.

The Master of Geographic Information Science (MGIS) program is a unique professional masters degree associated with the Geography Department at the University of Minnesota, a top-ranked department in the United States with a strong tradition in cartography and GIS. The MGIS program is also affiliated with other academic units including Forest Resources, Computer Science, the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA), and Soil, Water and Climate.

The MGIS program provides a comprehensive GIS degree that balances theoretical, technical, applied and societal dimensions of GIS.  Our program prides itself on providing a top-quality program accessible to a wide range of student interests and profiles. We offer:

  • A broad, professionally-based curriculum
  • Internationally-recognized faculty
  • Hands-on training from leading GIS professionals
  • A diverse and active student body
  • State-of-the-art facilities and resources
  • An exciting metropolitan location with access to employers and internships
  • Flexible scheduling options, including courses offered in late-afternoons and evenings to accommodate students who work full-time.

Earning your MGIS degree from the University of Minnesota will benefit your career and give you the opportunity to make a real difference in your chosen field. Whether you use your GIS knowledge to empower communities, plan urban transportation systems, chart evacuation paths, help the environment, increase market share, or pioneer new software applications, as a University of Minnesota MGIS graduate, you will always be in the company of your field's brightest minds and top achievers.


  • 2014 Student Recognition

    SolarPteam.jpgCongratulations to the MGIS Solar Dream Team, Ben Gosack, Chris Martin, Molly McDonald, Michael Moore, Stephen Palka, Devon Piernot, Andy Walz, and faculty adviser, Len Kne, who won first place in ESRI's Climate Resilience App Challenge 2014 including a $10,000 prize. Six members of the team traveled to the ESRI User Conference in July to accept their award during the opening session of the conference. The group has been recognized widely for this achievement including the Star Tribune, the Wisconsin State Cartographer's Office and Government Technology magazine.

    Thumbnail image for DSC00304_crop.jpgAlso join me in congratulating several MGIS students who received awards or completed their degrees thus far in 2014. Kathryn Purdham and Kyle Wikstrom are the recipients of 2014 ESRI User Conference Student Assistantships. These awards are very competitive and securing one is a high achievement. Each year a UMN student is recognized as the Outstanding Student of the Year for our local ESRI Development Center. The 2014 recipient is Yiqun (Ian) Xie.

    Taylor Long, MGIS program, is the graduate winner of the 2014 UMN Minnesota GIS/LIS Student Scholar Award for his GIS project, eBird Participation Mapping. Rebecca Barney, B.A. in Geography, is the undergraduate winner of the same award for her project, Creating Rebecca's Interactive Adventure Map. Both students will represent the University of Minnesota in the graduate and undergraduate student paper sessions at the Fall 2014 Minnesota GIS/LIS Annual Conference in early October!

    Finally, congratulations to our recent 2014 graduates! For a detailed listing, visit the MGIS graduates page.

    June 26th, 2014

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