Part-time Geographic Information Systems – Application Specialist

  • Take a virtual tour of the GIS wing. The tour was created as a GIS Collaborative Project by a team of three GIS students.

NEW! Study part-time in this flexible learning option. The Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Application Specialist is the "wizard" who provides technical expertise to produce effective and useful plans and project reports through the applied use of technology.

Please note: this program is being offered online for the 2021-22 academic year, and program delivery is synchronous.

Program Highlights

GIS Specialists help manage the world we live in by better understanding it. Through data integration, modeling, analysis and visually communicating ideas, GIS is used to help make informed decisions that affect every aspect of our planet and the life on it.

This program, like the full-time option, provides a comprehensive understanding of the most used software tools, analysis techniques and data management from cloud and enterprise databases, workflow automation and how to best display your findings. As well, the program focuses on:

  • GIS database development and combining data from file, web and open data sources
  • Spatial analysis to understand and explore complex problems using all types of data
  • GIS data management that focuses on other non-Esri data sources
  • Efficiency of tasks through the automation of repetitive workflows using Python and JavaScript libraries
  • Creating interactive web-based programs, printed maps and infographics allowing anyone to understand and explore your findings

In addition to acquiring a hands-on foundation using GIS technology tools, you will have many opportunities for team building, project management, problem-solving and critical thinking skills. Since employers are seeking these broad-based transferrable skills, this experience working in technology teams will give you an edge in the workplace.

Within this unique option, you can study part-time – giving you greater flexibility in your personal and professional life. Please see curriculum for detailed information on courses and semesters.

Please note:

To maintain part-time status in the program, students must take a minimum of three courses per semester. If you take four or more courses per semester you will be considered a full-time student and will subject to tuition rates as a full-time student.

Why Choose Fleming

With a well-established reputation in industry for producing high-quality graduates, we are constantly evolving to use the latest software and technology to meet current and future demands of the field. An emphasis on applied and real-world learning, along with best-in-class learning environments and faculty that are well-connected to employers, ensures our graduates find good jobs and rewarding careers. The part-time option offers greater flexibility for students who may be currently working full- or part-time.

Work Experience

You'll spend a significant part of your time in the program doing experiential work - putting theory into practice. A co-operative GIS project in the final semester involves cross-disciplinary teams from the GIS Applications Specialist and Cartographic Specialist programs working together on a project for a business, government, or industry client.

Is this You?

Knowing your way around a computer, hardware and software, is definitely high on the list of skills you need to succeed in this field. You should also possess the following:

  • interest in ongoing education and upgrading
  • creativity
  • perseverance (there are many challenges)
  • willingness to work hard (a 40 - 60 hour work week in the program)
  • energy and persistence
  • analytical skills
  • problem solving ability

Career Opportunities

Canadian Businessrecently published an article on "Canada’s Best Jobs." The article states:

"The explosion of big data and the growing need for location-aware hardware and software has led to a boom in the field of mapping," concluding that this field is "…poised for growth, with the highest projected demand among the top 20 jobs."

Read the article

As a graduate, the future looks bright with your expertise in big data. There's a consistently high placement rate within six to 12 months of graduating from the GIS - Applications Specialist program, and opportunities for advancement. On graduation, when combined with your previous education/work experience, you could work in positions as diverse as GIS programmer/analyst, applications specialist/consultant, ecosystem IT manager, utilities manager, database manager, GIS systems operator, and land information manager. The options for career change are strong. You can go back to your previous profession and apply your GIS studies there, or make a move into a new career.

Trent University

You can obtain a Trent University Honours Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts Degree in either Geography or Environmental Science/Studies and a Geographical Information Systems Ontario College Graduate Certificate in four years, with the third year spent studying at Fleming College. In other words, get both qualifications in four years - instead of five. For details, see Trent/Fleming Joint Degree, Geographical Information Systems Special Emphasis.

School of Military Mapping, Mapping and Charting Establishment of the Canadian Armed Forces

If you are a graduate of the Geomatics Technician program from the School of Military Mapping, Mapping and Charting Establishment of the Canadian Armed Forces, at the QL5 Level, you are eligible to apply for advance standing into the second semester of the three-semester Geographic Information Systems - Applications Specialist or Geographic Information Systems - Cartographic Specialist graduate certificate programs. For complete details see Transfer Credit Articulation Agreement.

Other computer related programs that might be of interest to you include GIS - Cartographic Specialist.

Additional Costs

Plan on spending $1000 for books and supplies.

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