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Geographic Information Systems and Visualization

Two students at a drafting tableGeographic Information Systems (GIS) and Visualization is a computer-based, data processing tool for gathering, storing, manipulating, analyzing, and displaying spatial data. The goal of the degree and certificate programs at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College is to prepare students for entry-level employment in the areas of GIS and visualization, as well as provide continuing education opportunities for persons interested in GIS.

The GIS and Visualization Associate of Applied Science degree and certificate program will provide specialized training in a highly technical environment, featuring extensive use of computers. Students completing the degree program will be well-suited to directly enter the workforce, or students may choose to transfer to a four-year learning institution with the GIS and visualization knowledge and skills learned at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College.

Students will learn techniques such as computer programming and application, database management, data acquisition, GIS and GPS technology, computerized mapping and cartography, visualization of spatial data, and GIS project management.

Upon completion of the degree program or certificate in Geographic Information Systems and Visualization, students will be qualified for employment positions such as a GIS/GPS Technician or Cartographic Technician, and other types of careers that use GIS and visualization knowledge and skills such as law enforcement, natural resources management, real estate, marketing, urban planning, human services, disaster management, utilities management, engineering, or surveying.

Current labor statistics suggest a rapidly growing GIS and Visualization field. Graduates in GIS and Visualization will be well trained to enter this field.

High-tech Training
GIS and Visualization students have access to computer labs with new GIS workstations and all the latest GIS software such as ArcGIS,  and both Spatial and 3-D Analyst Extensions. Students will also utilize new Garmin GPSmap76 units for research and classroom learning. Data input will also be done through digitizers and scanners on campus. Students will be able to choose between using a color laser printer or a large format plotter for map output. Additionally, a GeoWall will be utilized by students for visualization of data.

Students with a GPSThe GIS and Visualization program works collaboratively with agencies and organizations both on and off campus, giving students the chance to engage in learning and research in a real-world environment. Opportunities are also available for interested students to complete an internship while going through the program.

Well-qualified faculty and the multi-cultural environment at the college offer opportunities that no other college can provide.  A degree or certificate from Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College is greatly valued and respected by prospective employers.

For people who already have some college experience, it may be possible to complete the program in less time. Classes are offered during the day and evening hours, providing the opportunity to create a flexible schedule. Small class sizes, on-campus child care, and student organizations are added bonuses at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College.

To receive more information about the GIS and Visualization program, contact:

Elizabeth Sedgwick
Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College
2101 14th Street
Cloquet, MN 55720

Students looking at a map outdoors

Students with a map and pointing outdoors

Students in a computer lab
Associate of Applied Science Degree Option
Required Courses
GEOG 1050 Introduction to GIS
GEOG 1052 Computer Cartography
GEOG 1054 Introduction to the GPS
GEOG 1056 Data Acquisition in GIS
GEOG 2050 Practical Applications in GIS
GEOG 2052 Visualization in GIS
General Education
AMIN 1050 Anishinaabeg of Lake Superior
BIOL 1060 Environmental Science
ENGL 1001 College Writing I
ENGL 1020 College Writing IIB: Writing for Work
GEOG 1040 World Regional Geography
PHYS 1030 Meteorology
SPCH 1010 Public Speaking
Major Restricted Electives
BUS 1035 Database and Data Spreadsheets
CSCI 1020 Introduction to Programming (or equivalent)
GEOG 1010 Physical Geography
GEOG 1020 Cultural Geography
GEOL 2010 Geomorphology
MATH 1030 Introduction to Statistics
PHIL 2010 Ethics
Total credits required: 64
Certificate Option
Required Courses
GEOG 1050 Introduction to GIS
GEOG 1052 Computer Cartography
GEOG 1054 Introduction to the GPS
GEOG 1056 Data Acquisition in GIS
GEOG 2050 Practical Applications in GIS
GEOG 2052 Visualization in GIS
Total credits required: 16

Selected Course Descriptions
GEOG 1050 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
This course will introduce concepts of GIS theory. Hands-on applications will be used, primarily consisting of ArcGIS software. Students will complete lab assignments within appropriate topics and fields. Topics could range from land use analysis to crime analysis. Other topics may be explored as necessary and as deemed appropriate by the instructor.

GEOG 1052 Computer Cartography
Students will apply principles and techniques using computer software to produce effective thematic maps. Both qualitative and quantitative types of thematic maps will be examined and created.

GEOG 1054 Introduction to the Global Positioning System
This course will give student knowledge of the Global Positioning System (GPS) with both conceptual and hands-on applications. GIS software and real-world applications will also be introduced.

GEOG 1056 Data Acquisition in GIS
Students will learn about and engage in the acquisition, conversion, and creation of digital data. Equipment used will include but not be limited to digitizers, scanners, utilization of remote sensing data, and a Global Positioning System (GPS).

GEOG 2050 Practical Applications in GIS
This course will give students either a real-world project using GIS in conjunction with a public/private agency or a project suitable to the student’s field of interest. The instructor must approve all independent projects before the student begins working on it.

GEOG 2052 Visualization in GIS
In this course, students will examine and apply 3-D GIS technology. Students will use ArcGIS software along with the 3-D Analyst extension. Additionally, students will utilize a GeoWall for 3-D visualization.

Degree requirements and courses are subject to change. Students should consult with an advisor/counselor when registering for courses.

 2101 14th Street       Cloquet, Minnesota 55720       1.800.657.3712       218.879.0800       TTY 218.879.0805