Geographic Information Systems
WHAT IS GIS?
Geographic information systems (GIS) lets us visualize, question, analyze and interpret data to understand relationships, patterns and trends. GIS is built on the collective knowledge of several academic fields, including geography, cartography and computer science. It allows us to stack layers of information and see how datasets relate to one another to help answer important questions about our world.
CURRENT APPLICATIONS OF GIS
According the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the geospatial job market, including photogrammetrists and cartographers, is projected to grow 29 percent from 2014 to 2024. This is much faster than the average industry. GIS is commonly used in business, engineering and government. Businesses use GIS to manage information related to sales, customers, inventory, demographics and much more. Engineering and technology professionals rely on GIS to develop and maintain information systems that are inherently linked to infrastructure. GIS provides the link between infrastructure information traditionally stored in databases and computer-aided drawing (CAD) maps. Governments at all levels digest an immense amount of information as part of their responsibilities. Much of this information has a location element to it, such as addresses, parcels, postal codes or census information. GIS helps local, state, federal and international governing bodies perform diverse functions with greater ease and provides a more effective way of sharing data.
The natural and biological sciences enjoy the benefits of employing GIS in many ways. Much of our natural world can be observed with the aid of GIS, including climate patterns, forensic biology and geomorphology.
Likewise, the health care industry employs GIS to assist in determining where and when to intervene. GIS can also help improve the quality of care, increase service availability, discover more cost-effective delivery modes, preserve patient confidentiality and satisfy the needs of the research community for data accessibility.
MINOR IN GIS
Ohio Northern University offers a minor in geography with a focus on GIS. Whatever your field of interest, chances are good that GIS can be employed. GIS is a problem-solving tool that it is interdisciplinary in nature, making the geography minor attractive to most majors in our rapidly changing and technology-oriented economy.
WANT TO SEE MORE?
See student projects from recent GIS courses:
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