The Geospatial Systems Engineering Program will prepare graduates with advanced knowledge and skills focusing on research, design, development, and use of technologies in the field of geospatial systems engineering. This program satisfies regional, state, and national need for master’s-level graduates in geospatial systems engineering.
The degree requires a minimum of 36 semester-credit hours. This must include 12 semester credit hours in the geospatial systems engineering core and 24 semester hours in the Graduate Thesis option or the Graduate Creative Project option as described in Section II.
Objectives of the Program
Student Learning Outcomes
Graduates of the GSEN Program will:
- Develop, manage, and analyze geospatial data using spatial analysis, computational, and geomatics engineering techniques.
- Develop the capacity for continued learning, research, and professional application.
- Creatively apply geomatics engineering technologies to solve real-world problems.
Graduates of the Master of Science in Geospatial Systems Engineering will have:
- The ability to lead teams and apply problem-solving skills that include oral and written communication skills to effectively manage geospatial information.
- An awareness and utilization of external organizations and institutions that provide useful geospatial data sets and their relationships to traditional and contemporary societal issues.
- A recognition of the need for continued learning and development of leadership skills through involvement in volunteer professional organizations and societies.
Students seeking admission to the graduate degree program in Geospatial Systems Engineering must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education in the United States (or an equivalent foreign institution). Each applicant must also submit the following to the Office of Recruitment and Admissions:
- An application and application fee.
- Transcripts from regionally accredited institutions (international students will be required to submit relevant international transcripts).
- At least two reference letters, one each from industry and academic institutions.
- Official GRE scores.
- Admission Essay.
Students who have not completed all general prerequisites listed below may be required to complete leveling courses with grades of “B” or better.
Persons seeking admission to the MS Program in Geospatial Systems Engineering should first contact the program and identify a faculty member willing to serve as the graduate advisor. Applicants will not be admitted to the program without a graduate advisor.
The course of study leading to a MS degree in Geospatial Systems Engineering is composed of four components:
- General prerequisites (must be satisfied before the student can be formally and unconditionally accepted to the MS program).
- Required Courses.
- Elective Courses.
- Additional Courses.
I. General Prerequisites
- Geospatial Systems Engineering
Every student is expected to have achieved certain minimum competencies in geospatial science before being formally admitted to the MS degree program. Students who have not earned a baccalaureate degree in Geographic Information Science, Surveying, or a similar field must consult with the coordinator of the Geospatial Systems Engineering Program to design a plan of appropriate leveling courses. If leveling is required, students must complete the course(s) designated with a grade of “B” or better. Such courses (GSEN 5300 and 4000-sequence or lower) are regarded as foundation or leveling work and do not count as credit towards the total required for completion of the graduate degree.
Every student must have minimum level of knowledge in mathematics equivalent to the mathematics courses in the BS in GISC and will be evaluated on an individual basis by Geospatial Systems Engineering faculty.
Every student is expected to have minimum competencies in English composition, especially in technical writing. In preparation for reports that are required in the workplace, numerous reports are required during the course of study for the degree. The proposal, the creative project and the thesis require technical writing. Students may satisfy the writing requirement by completing one of the following courses:
ENGL 3301 Principles of Professional & Report Writing
ENGL 3379 Writing in Computer-Network Environment
ENGL 3380 Advanced Writing in Computer-Network Environment
- Such courses (GISC 5300 and 4000-sequence or lower) are regarded as foundation or leveling work and do not count as credit towards the total required for completion of the graduate degree.
- Students may be required to take an entrance exam before being allowed to register for classes.
Students will choose between thesis (9 credit hours) and project (3 credit hours) options. Either option allows students to work in teams. Projects requiring student teams should be well designed to demonstrate equal participation of team members and closely overseen by the members of the advisory committee. The thesis option allows students to undertake detailed research, experimentation design, implementation, testing, and scientific reporting of a new idea or application of geospatial technology. Students undertaking the thesis are encouraged to pursue projects that are associated with their employment. The project option allows students to pursue study of a smaller specific topic, which should be researched in detail. Students following either option will be required to take a core of interdisciplinary courses to provide a broad background, and to select elective courses in consultation with their advisory committee to provide in depth education in a particular area of emphasis related to geospatial systems engineering. Elective courses may be taken from other science disciplines, such as Computer Science, with permission from the advisory committee chair or the program coordinator. Elective courses in other science disciplines are encouraged as these courses expose students to interdisciplinary approaches to research and problem solving.
1. Thesis Option
The thesis option requires a Graduate Thesis based upon original research, supported by the scientific literature, and proved statistically, when appropriate. The thesis option master’s degree will allow a person to pursue advanced graduate study, or to obtain employment in most areas requiring a detailed knowledge of a specific aspect of geospatial systems engineering. The Geospatial Systems Engineering Graduate Thesis requires 9 hours of research and a formal publishable thesis. Students are required to register for for GSEN 5395 Graduate Project Research and Proposal to develop a proposal for Graduate Thesis. After the proposal is accepted by the commitee, students must enroll in a minimum of 6 hours of GSEN 5998 Graduate Thesis. Additionally, in the semester of intended graduation, students must enroll in an additional 3 hours of GSEN 5998 Graduate Thesis and must schedule a presentation of their thesis project to the advisory committee, which may include an oral examination of the graduate research and thesis.
Graduate Project Research and Proposal (GSEN 5395 ) and Graduate Thesis (GSEN 5998 ) (Total 12 hours)
- Required Core Courses 6 sem. hrs.
- Elective Courses 18 sem. hrs.
- Graduate Project Research and Proposal 3 sem. hrs.
- Graduate Thesis 9 sem. hrs.
Total hours (Thesis option): 36
2. Project Option:
The project option is a Graduate Creative Project designed for students who desire a more detailed study into a specific geospatial systems engineering project. The curriculum will especially benefit individuals employed in scientific or technical fields who seek advancement or additional training to enhance their knowledge and skills. Graduate Creative Project students must complete a professional research project with a written final report and seminar. The Graduate Creative Project requires 3 hours of research and a formal publishable project report. Students are required to register for Graduate Project Research and Proposal (GSEN 5395 ) to develop a proposal for Graduate Creative Project. After completion of all other requirements for the MS degree in GSEN, students must schedule a presentation of their project to the advisory committee, which may include an oral examination of the graduate research and Graduate Creative Project.
Graduate Project Research and Proposal (GSEN 5395 ) and Graduate Creative Project (GSEN 5993) (Total 6 hours)
- Required Core Courses 6 sem. hrs.
- Elective Courses 24 sem. hrs.
- Graduate Project Research and Proposal 3 sem. hrs.
- Graduate Creative Project 3 sem. hrs.
Total hours (Project option): 36
III. Required Core Courses
All Geospatial Systems Engineering students must complete 6 semester hours from the following courses:
Geospatial Systems Engineering Core
IV. Elective Courses
Thesis option students must complete 18 semester hours and project option students must complete 24 semester hours from the courses listed below or from other interdisciplinary courses, as selected in consultation with their advisory committee, to provide a broad background in geospatial systems engineering or related fields:
Geospatial Systems Engineering Electives
V. Additional Courses
The following additional courses may be offered and substituted for any of the courses mentioned in II subject to approval by the student graduate mentor or committee chair.
Chronological Procedure Leading to the MS Degree
- Completion of a degree plan
Upon admission to the MS degree program in Geospatial Systems Engineering, and prior to enrollment in any course, the student must contact the Graduate Academic Advisor in the College of Science and Engineering to have a degree plan completed. The student will then be assigned an academic advisor/mentor who is a graduate faculty member of the Geospatial Systems Engineering program. Students must arrange to see this advisor/mentor each semester until graduation to have their semester course schedules approved.
- Progress toward the degree
Once admitted to the graduate degree program in Geospatial Systems Engineering, a student must complete at least six semester credit hours per year toward the degree until the degree is completed. Failure to make this minimum progress will result in dismissal from the degree program with possible readmission based on the catalog in effect at the time of re-admission. A student who is actively pursuing a Graduate Creative Project or Graduate Thesis and has completed all other course work for the degree will be required to register for a minimum of 3 credit hours continuously until the project is completed.
- Graduate Thesis and Graduate Creative Project procedure
Following a consultation with and permission of the advisor/mentor, the student may register for GSEN 5395 to develop a proposal for the Graduate Thesis or Graduate Creative Project. After the proposal is approved by the thesis or creative project chairperson, the proposal must be submitted to the full thesis or creative project committee. This three-member committee shall consist of at least two full-time Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi graduate faculty members. The committee chairperson must be a graduate faculty member in the geospatial systems engineering program. The second committee member may be a graduate faculty member in geospatial systems engineering, geographic information science, or computer science. The third member may be a graduate faculty member having distinguished professional status and expertise in the discipline of the proposed Graduate Thesis or Graduate Creative Project.
After the approved Graduate Thesis proposal is placed in the student’s file, the student may register for GSEN 5998 . After approval of Graduate Creative Project proposal, a student may register for GSEN 5993. Once a student has registered for Graduate Thesis or Graduate Creative Project, he or she must continue to register in each consecutive semester until the thesis or creative project is completed. A student who does not complete a thesis or creative project in the semester for which he or she has registered will receive a grade of IP (In Progress). Failure to register for an incomplete thesis or creative project in the next semester will terminate the thesis or creative project and will require that the entire thesis or creative project process be repeated starting with the submission of a new thesis or creative project proposal.
- Final examination and thesis or project report
After completion of all other requirements for the MS degree in Geospatial Systems Engineering, the student must schedule an oral exam over his/her graduate program of study. The oral exam may include any material from the program of study and will be administered by the graduate committee. It will focus heavily on the thesis or creative project.
The Graduate Thesis or Graduate Creative Project (see GSEN 5998 or GSEN 5993 ) may be completed in one semester; however, with continuous registration, a student will be allowed up to one calendar year to complete the thesis or creative project. Any extension beyond one year will require written justification on a semester-to-semester basis, to be approved by each member of the committee and the coordinator of the Geospatial Systems Engineering program.
For Additional Information
|Conrad Blucher Institute; Phone: 361-825-5850
|Geospatial Systems Engineering Program, Unit 5868
Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
6300 Ocean Drive
Corpus Christi, TX 78412-5868