TABLE A.12 Coursework for a Master’s Degree in Geographic and Cartographic Sciences at George Mason University

Course Title Description
Required courses (12 credits)a

GGS 553 (3 credits)

Geographic Information System

Sources of digital geospatial data; and methods of input, storage, display, and processing of spatial data for geographic analysis using GIS. Lectures, hands-on exercises familiarize students with current technology

GGS 579 (3 credits)

Remote sensing

Examines use of various types and combinations of electromagnetic energy to obtain spatial information. Concentrates on nonphotographic and spaceborne remote sensing platforms and sensors. Examines essential operational parameters for existing and future systems and strategies for visual extraction of features

GGS 560 (3 credits)

Quantitative methods

Survey of quantitative methods commonly used in geographic research. Emphasizes spatial analysis techniques

GGS 689 (3 credits)

Seminar in geographic thought and methodology

Includes historical development of geographic thought and current philosophy of geography; rationale for various subfields; and geographic research techniques and methods of analysis

Electives (21-24 credits)b

GGS 503 (3 credits)

Problems in environmental management

Case studies of effects of human activities on atmospheric, hydrologic, geomorphic, and biotic processes

GGS 505 (3 credits)

Transportation geography

Structure, principles, location, and development of world transportation. Critical role of transportation in moving people, goods, and ideas at international, national, regional, and urban levels

GGS 525 (3 credits)

Economics of human/environmental interactions

Advanced topics in environmental, natural resource, and ecological economics for noneconomist. Emphasizes sustainability, intergenerational equity, and economic-ecological feedbacks

GGS 531 (3 credits)

Land-use modeling techniques and applications

Survey of literature on spatially explicit empirical models of land-use change. Hands-on experience developing and running simple models. Techniques covered include statistical models, mathematical programming models, cellular automata, agent-based models, and integrated models

GGS 533 (1-6 credits)

Issues in regional geography

Geographical study of particular region or relevant regional issue

GGS 540 (3 credits)

Medical geography

Spatial approaches to study of health and disease. Topics include disease ecology and diffusion, and geographic perspectives on improving health care delivery

GGS 551 (3 credits)

Thematic cartography

Analyzes nature of perceptual organization and visual systems in thematic map communication portrayal, graphic handling, and data analysis

GGS 554 (3 credits)

History of cartography

History of cartographic portrayal of Earth from ancient times through 19th century, emphasizing interrelation of human culture, technological development, and geographical knowledge as reflected in maps

GGS 562 (3 credits)

Photogrammetry

Treatment of photogrammetric problems, including least-squares adjustments, image coordination refinements, colinearity equation, resection, relative orientation, and analytic aerotriangulation

GGS 563 (3 credits)

Advanced Geographic Information Systems

Discusses advanced GIS concepts including spatial data structure, spatial analysis, programming data fusion, Internet components, and spatial database management. Hands-on activities demonstrate concepts and specific applications in both cultural and physical geography

GGS 579 (3 credits)

Digital remote sensing

Examines use of various types and combinations of electromagnetic energy to obtain spatial information. Concentrates on nonphotographic and spaceborne remote sensing platforms and sensors. Examines essential operational parameters for existing and future systems and strategies for visual extraction of features

GGS 581 (3 credits)

World food and population

Topics include maldistribution of population, regional disparities in growth rates and income distribution, food production, and world hunger. Discusses population policies, with emphasis on Third World countries

GGS 590 (1-3 credits)

Geography of insurgency

Special topics seminar which analyzes topics of immediate interest in political unrest and insurgency

GGS 590 (1-3 credits)

Political geography

Special topics seminar which analyzes topics of immediate interest in political policies and political behavior

GGS 590 (1-3 credits)

GIS for business

Special topics seminar which analyzes topics of immediate interest in business related applications of GIS such as enterprise GIS, GIS for real estate, location analysis and marketing

GGS 590 (1-3 credits)

GIS for the environment

Special topics seminar which analyzes topics of immediate interest in GIS and environmental modeling, conservation, and sustainability

GGS 605 (3 credits)

Socioeconomic applications of GIS

Provides those working with spatially referenced data the technical skills to use GIS to conduct spatial analyses on socioeconomic phenomena related to labor, retail, and real estate markets. Introduces and emphasizes the development of technical and methodological skills to understand the potential and the pitfalls of using GIS for spatial analyses of socioeconomic phenomena

GGS 631 (3 credits)

Spatial agent-based models of human environment interactions

Discusses key challenges in spatial modeling of human-environment interactions. Reviews agent-based modeling applications in urban and rural interactions, agriculture, forestry, and other areas. Hands-on development of simple agent-based models and investigation of linkages between GIS and agent-based models



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