Jul 23, 2024  
2022-2023 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Geographic Information Systems Management, M.S.

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Advisement for the program is available from the Geography and Geosciences  Department.

The Master of Science in Geographic Information Systems Management (GISM) is designed to provide theoretical and applied experience in administering and managing a GIS in a government, business or non-profit organization. To this end, the GISM program also focuses on enhancing the GIS proficiency of professionals working in these areas to support their management objectives. With the GISM, these professionals will be equipped to fully integrate and advance the use of GIS technology in their work environments.

In addition to targeting GIS professionals, this master’s program also targets working professionals who may not have acquired an in-depth GIS background as part of their primary training or education and are expected to interact with GIS professionals and technicians as part of their job. The program is designed to meet students’ needs while they continue to hold their professional position. Thus, the entirety of the program is offered online.


Admission to the Master of Science in Geographic Information Systems Management (GISM) requires that the Application for Graduate Program Admission, payment of the graduate application fee, transcripts from all colleges attended and Residency/Domicile Information form be submitted to the Office of Admissions. When the application and required transcripts arrive in the Office of Admissions, the application files are sent to the MS GISM program coordinator for admission consideration. Applicants submit the following program materials in addition to the above-required items:

  • Two academic or professional recommendations are required that address the applicant’s ability to do graduate work.

  • A personal statement of about 500 words that describes the applicant’s goals related to the pursuit of this graduate program of study to their overall career.

  • Completion of undergraduate coursework in both algebra and statistics,

  • An undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. university or international equivalent,

  • International applicants who are non-native speakers of English should present a TOEFL score of at least 550 points (paper-based test) or 79 (internet-based test). At the graduate director’s discretion, students may substitute this for other English proficiency evidence, such as graduation from an English-speaking university

  • A professional resume highlighting:

    • any management or technical experience working in a professional capacity in business, government or non-government organizations

    • any use or experience of GIS software

    • any GIS courses taken

    • any management courses taken

    • other relevant information

Provisional Admission

If an applicant does not have any GIS experience, they may be admitted provisionally and be required to make up for the deficiency by completing leveling courses.

Provisionally admitted students who complete GEOG 519 and POSC 540 with no grade below a B are converted to full admission status.

Program of Study

  • The Master of Science in GIS management requires completing at least 33/34 credit hours, of which at least 25 credit hours are earned at Salisbury University.

  • The program must be completed with a cumulative average of a B (3.0) or higher, with no more than six credit hours below a grade of B and no grade lower than a C.

  • The curriculum has a common set of core courses and allows for elective courses in professional areas of specialization.

  • The GISM program can be completed in 13-months with full-time study and beginning your degree in the summer semester. Numerous part-time study options are available as well.

  • All courses are offered online only.

  • Unused graduate credits from suitably accredited institutions can be transferred into the program at the GISM director’s discretion.

Students work closely with the program director to identify which electives meet their educational goals.


This checklist is an unofficial tool for planning. Matriculated students and advisors should consult the Academic Requirements Report in GullNet before and after registering for classes each semester to track academic progress.

Program Requirements

Complete a Minimum of 6 Credit Hours in Elective Courses from the Following:

GEOG 550  Topic Must Be: Open Source GIS

** M.B.A. online tuition rate applies

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