Apr 24, 2024  
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Geographic Science, Applied Geographic Information Science Concentration, B.S.

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Program Coordinator: Dr. Mace Bentley
Phone: (540) 568-6260
Email: bentleml@jmu.edu
Website: http://www.gs.jmu.edu


The Geographic Science Program empowers, inspires and motivates students to become competent critical thinkers prepared for lifelong learning, who will respond to intellectual challenges with interest, excitement and competence, and who will see themselves as global citizens actively involved in the world around them. 

The Geographic Sciences Program prepares students who are confident in their abilities as geographers. Graduates have the skills to make a professional contribution to the field, and to compete in graduate programs and the job market. They are highly qualified for careers in research and development and are equipped for long term success as professionals in the field of geography.

Through the study of geography students will:

  • Understand and properly use the terminology and concepts that are central to the discipline of geography, and explain how these concepts evolved over time.
  • Effectively use appropriate geospatial technologies to address questions about human interactions within the built or natural environments.
  • Be productive participants in research efforts aimed at measuring, describing, analyzing, and explaining the underlying processes giving rise to geographic phenomena.
  • Work effectively in multidisciplinary teams.
  • Evaluate human-environment interactions from holistic point of view that addresses geographic, as well as political, social, economic and ethical factors affecting those interactions.
  • Demonstrate civic responsibility and appreciation for culture and physical diversity from local global scales.

Applied Geographic Information Science (AGIS) Concentration

JMU Geographic Science graduates with an AGIS concentration are prepared to gain professional employment with government and industry or go on to graduate programs. Public agencies where they find employment include local and regional planning agencies, mapping organizations such as the U.S. Geological Survey, intelligence agencies such as the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency and, also in the environmental science field with the U.S. Forest Service, the National Park Service, the Environmental Protection Agency and other agencies.

JMU AGIS graduates find opportunities in industry with companies such as ESRI, Digital Global, Lockheed, BAE Systems, Astrium, SAIC, Sanborn and many others.

Co-curricular Activities and Organizations

  • Geography Club
  • Gamma Theta Upsilon (International Geographical Honor Society)

Degree and Major Requirements

Degree Requirements

Required Courses

  • General Education  41-44 Credit Hours 1
  • Quantitative requirement (in addition to General Education ) 3 Credit Hours
  • Scientific Literacy requirement (in addition to General Education ) 3-4 Credit Hours
  • Major requirements 53 Credit Hours
  • Electives 18-22 Credit Hours
Total: 120 Credit Hours


1 The General Education  program contains a set of requirements each student must fulfill. The number of credit hours necessary to fulfill these requirements may vary. ISAT 251  for the math requirement in Cluster 3  is strongly recommended, as is GEOG 200  in Cluster 4 .

Major Requirements

Core Courses

Total: 53 Credit Hours


1 For Honors students, the advanced sequence is  GEOG 499 A, B, C .
2 Students may opt for a capstone experience that entails three or six hours of independent research (GEOG 490 ), with the approval of and in close consultation with a project adviser.

Additional Information

In addition to the geography core courses, students must choose one of two concentrations, listed in the “Concentrations” section. All courses for the major must be taken on a graded basis. Students must earn a “C” or better in each of the core courses as they are prerequisites to most concentration courses.

Concentration Requirements

Required Courses

In addition to the geography core requirements, students in the AGIS concentration must complete the following course work.

Cognate Course: 3 Credit Hours

(three credit hours selected from the following)

Total: 21 Credit Hours

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