Geographic Information Systems (GIS) | Mount Allison

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

GIS uses the application of computer models to represent spatial features on the earth's surface.


GIS uses the application of computer models to represent spatial features on the earth's surface.

GIS is computing technology that helps understand spatial patterns and relationships by analyzing spatial data and using cartography techniques to present results in a variety of formats such as tables, graphs, and maps. 

GIS has a wide relevance for solving problems in a number of fields, whether it involves wildlife habitat, public health, climate change, or community land use. GIS is also widely used in social research to track patterns of social vulnerability, public opinion, human activity, or to assess access to services.

Only available as a minor.

At a Glance

Degree options
Minor only


At Mount Allison, core GIS courses are a mixture of lecture and lab where you have the opportunity to gain fluency in industry-leading software programs and GIS technology.

You'll learn the best practices of high-quality map-making, while in advanced classes you'll discover how to automate geoprocessing workflows and program GIS analyses using Python.

Combined with courses in computer science, as well as environment and geography, a GIS minor provides a valuable foundation in applied spatial analysis.

In this interdisciplinary program, you'll look at subjects like:

  • data collection and analysis
  • cartography
  • the role of maps in conveying geographic information
  • research techniques
  • advanced methods of producing and visualizing surfaces and data

GIS is available as a minor only.

Not sure about the difference between a major, a minor, an honours, and a certificate?

    Environment suitability for the blacklegged tick in New Brunswick


    Related programs:

    Faculty Spotlight

    Dr. David Lieske
    Department head and associate professor, Geography and Environment

    » Researchers receive Environment and Climate Change Canada funding for microplastics study


    Whether you're entering the job market or continuing your education, your Mount Allison degree will stand out.

    Mount Allison has been recognized by Maclean's as the top primarily undergraduate university in Canada more times than any other university.

    With experiential learning and career development opportunities available in every degree, you'll also graduate with hands-on learning and on-the-job experience.

    Our graduates also boast extraordinarily high acceptance rates to top graduate programs and professional schools such as law and medicine.

    Popular career paths for GIS graduates include:

    • cartographer
    • GIS/GPS analyst
    • field surveyor
    • computer mapping and software developer
    • map interpreter
    • image analysis using remote sensing products
    • computer programmer
    • database administrator
    • spatial web/application developer
    • consultant

    Alumni Spotlight

    Laura Salisbury ('13)
    BSc, Environmental Science with minors in GIS and Biology
    Geospatial Standards Advisor, Natural Resources Canada

    "GIS will change how you approach and solve problems, allowing you to see issues from many different angles.”


    Quote icon

    Studying GIS allowed me to do hands-on work in many different settings; in the computer lab I learned coding languages and data analysis while in the field I took samples and examined topics up close. Most importantly, GIS taught me how to see data distributions in the world around me, bringing the subject to life in nature, cities and stories.

    French, minor in Geographic Information Systems
    Hamilton, ON


    Experiential learning

    GIS students always spend time learning and collecting data in nature and in urban environments — including Sackville, around the Bay of Fundy, in communities throughout the Maritimes, and beyond.

    GIS Lab

    Our geographic information systems (GIS) computing lab provides a teaching lab and research space for faculty and students. It supports a range of GIS software used by researchers and industry.

    Geospatial Modelling Lab

    The Geospatial Modelling Lab (GML) facilitates spatial analysis and modelling that can be applied to assist environmental monitoring, mapping and conservation planning.

    Students have the opportunity to work in this lab as research assistants, particularly those minoring in GIS.


    Bachelor of Arts

    Admission Requirements

    Our admissions decisions are based on your academic record, leadership skills, a high level of commitment, and the potential for personal growth. The drop down menus below will help you find information on what pre-requisites are recommended for a Bachelor of Arts; however, a minor is GIS can be combined with any degree.

    Academic Awards


    Mount A is #1 in scholarships and bursaries

    Maclean’s ranks Mount Allison first in scholarships and bursaries, and second in the number of students who have won national academic awards. To date, 55 Mount Allison students have become Rhodes Scholars.

    Next Steps

    Be part of Canada's best undergraduate university