Interdisciplinary Programs

Geographical Information Systems and Spatial Analysis Certificate

The Certificate in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Spatial Analysis is aimed at graduate students desiring knowledge of how to apply advanced techniques of GIS and spatial analysis to issues of design, planning, urban policy, the environment, and other related fields. The program is administrated by a director and a two-member advisory committee appointed by the dean.

Students apply to the program through the School of Design Office of Admission. Students enrolled in graduate programs at the University of Pennsylvania are eligible for admission.

Program Director: John Landis


Requirements include completion of five course units as follows:

1. Introductory Courses (choose one): *

• CPLN 503/ENVS 541 Modeling Geographic Objects (Fall) - Tomlin

• LARP 741/ENVS 681 Modeling Geographic Space (Spring) - Tomlin

2. Applications and Advanced Courses (choose three) **

• LARP 741/ENVS 681 Modeling Geographic Space (Spring) - Tomlin***

• LARP 743 Cartographic Modeling (Fall) - Tomlin/Landis

• ESE 502 Introduction to Spatial Analysis & Modeling (Fall) - Smith

• LARP745 Advanced Topics in GIS (Spring) - Tomlin

• CPLN 675 Visualization & Modeling (Fall)

  • CPLN 671 Spatial Statistics and Data Analysis (Fall)


  • CPLN 590 Spatial Analysis Planning (Fall)


3. GIS Capstone Project (1 course unit) Typically taken as CPLN 601 Independent Study or LARP 796 Independent Studio

* Students who have previously taken an introductory GIS course in another department (e.g., URBS530, SWRK730, HSPV741) may use it to meet this requirement subject to the permission of the certificate director.

** Other courses offered under the MUSA program may be added at a later date.

*** Students who have completed CPLN 503 may take LARP 741 as an advanced course