Online Graduate GIS Certificate

Our Program

Utah State University’s online Geographic Information Science (GIS) certificate is designed for graduate students or professionals wanting skills and experience applying industry standard GIS and remote sensing tools to natural resource issues. 

Students who complete the program will receive a graduate-level certificate in Geographic Information Science. Their USU transcript will list the courses and grades received to complete the program. The certificate is complementary to a wide variety of graduate programs, and is available as a standalone certificate.  However, credits obtained from the certificate may be applied toward a graduate degree. The certificate may be completed in one year, but students have five years to complete the certificate.

All online courses in this certificate program will be taught in English. International students from non-English speaking countries are expected to be able to communicate in English.  Students must communicate both orally and in writing, with the instructor as well as other fellow students in class.

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants go to  Choose the Graduate Application and then the GIS Certificate.
  • Applicant must provide an official transcript showing a bachelor's degree or higher has been received. Please send official transcripts to the following address:  0900 Old Main Hill, Logan UT 84322-0900.  Official electronic transcripts may be sent to from the institution.  (If you've attended USU, we will obtain your transcripts.)
  • Email to receive a code to waive $30 off the application fee.
  • Application deadlines are two weeks prior to the start of each semester.

Contact Info

Director: Shannon Belmont

Program Administrator: Melanie Conrad

Location: Natural Resources 122

Phone: (435) 797-3375


Course Requirements

To receive the certificate, a participant must complete the following set of requirements:

  • Apply and be accepted into the GIS Certificate Program
  • Register for and successfully complete four graduate-level courses
  • Maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA for program courses (grades below B- will not be accepted)
  • Abide by the Code of Policies and Procedures for Students at Utah State University.

Tuition Costs

  • Tuition costs for Out-of-State students is $546 per credit. ($471 tuition + $43 differential tuition + $15 online course fee per credit)
  • Tuition costs for in-state students is based on USU's tuition and fees table + $42 differential tuition per credit.

Curriculum Offerings

Students must complete FOUR courses (3 credits each) in order to fulfill the requirements for the GIS Certificate. Each course is offered online and the semesters they are offered are listed below:

  • NR 6910 – Geographic Information Systems for Natural Resource Applications (fall, spring, summer)
  • NR 6920 - Python Programming for GIS (pre-req: NR 6910 or prior GIS experience) (fall, spring)
  • NR 6930 – Advanced Geographic Information Systems (pre-req: NR 6910 or prior GIS experience) (fall, spring, summer)
  • NR 6940 – Principles of Remote Sensing for Natural Resources (pre-req: NR 6910 or prior GIS experience; may be taken concurrently with NR 6910) (fall, spring, summer)
  • NR 6950 – Geospatial Analysis (pre-req: NR 6910 or prior GIS experience) (fall, spring)

Logan campus students may take the following on-campus courses to use as substitutes:

  • WATS 6920 – Adv. GIS & Spatial Analysis (spring)
  • WILD 6750 – Applied Remote Sensing (fall)
  • GEOG 6870 - Geospatial Analysis (spring)
  • WILD 6900 - GST: Space Use Ecology with R (spring)
  • WILD 6920 - Python Programming for GIS (spring)

 How to Register

To register for online courses at Utah State University, you must have your A-number and password. If you do not have either, follow the directions below:

  • Go to MyUSU.
  • If you don't know your student identification number (A-number) - click on "Access (Banner)." A drop down menu will appear. Select "Access (Banner) ID Lookup by preferred email" link and follow directions for accessing your A-number.
  • If you have not entered a password yet, go to  and follow the directions for getting your temporary password that USU has assigned to you. Follow the directions for setting up a permanent password for your USU Banner account.

If you have your A-number and password, you can register for courses:

  • Login to Access (Banner) with your A-number and password.
  • Once you have logged in, click on "Registration" and follow the directions for course registration.

In addition to the courses we have listed here there are other courses offered through the Natural Resources Distance Learning Consortium