10 Top free online GIS courses of 2022 ( with Certificates)

Filed in Articles, Online Courses by on 4th December 2021

These top online GIS courses in 2022 will help you gain in-depth knowledge of Geographic Information Systems. 

10 Top free online GIS courses in 2022 ( with Certificates)

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a framework to organize, communicate, and understand geographical data. With the knowledge of GIS, you can  identify problems, monitor changes, manage and respond to events, perform forecasting, set priorities, and understand trends

GIS is used by companies and corporations to make maps that communicate, perform analysis, share information, and solve complex problems around the world.

In this detailed article. You will get to know;

  • What is GIS?
  • Benefits of free online GIS courses
  • Colleges that offer free online GIS courses
  • 10 Top free online GIS courses in 2022 ( with Certificates)

What Is GIS?

GIS, fully known as a geographic information system, is a framework for gathering, managing, and analyzing data. It is rooted in the science of geography, and it integrates many types of data, analyzes spatial locations and uses maps and 3D scenes to organize layers of information into visualizations.

This enables GIS to reveal deeper data insights, such as patterns, relationships, and situations, and display and analyze data. This helps users tell powerful stories and foretell outcomes as well as make smarter decisions.  

GIS technology applies Geographic Science with tools for understanding and collaboration. It helps people reach a common goal: to gain actionable intelligence from all types of data through the use of maps, data, analysis, and apps.

Furthermore, GIS Identifies problems, monitors changes, manages and responds to events, performs forecasting, sets priorities and understands trends. Individuals and corporate organizations use GIS to create maps that communicate ideals, perform analysis, share information, and solve complex problems around the world. GIS is about uncovering meaning and insights from within data.

Benefits of free online GIS courses

Below are some reasons why you should enroll for free online GIS courses;

Little Or No Cost To Be Paid

Most online programs are free and offer a more affordable option than traditional colleges. Free online courses offer an amazing learning program that is usually paid for in colleges and universities.

You may pay a little amount for some online courses. However, not all online degrees are affordable when compared with traditional colleges. associated expenses almost always cost less.

For example, there are no commuting costs, and sometimes required course materials, such as textbooks, are available online at no cost.

These free online courses can help students fulfill career goals and ambitions.

Convenience and Flexibility

Online courses offer you an opportunity to choose a study at your own pace and schedule. You can continue with your usual lifestyle ranging from your work to other necessary issues while still learning through an online GIS course.

Course materials are also readily accessible online, making special library trips needless.

Variety of Programs and Courses

Online study offers a variety of programs and courses and you can afford to apply for any course or program you wish regardless of your discipline and area of specialization.

For instance, someone with a degree in engineering can afford to take up an online course in website design and management.

Comfortability and convenience

You can take up an online course from start to finish from the comfort of your home.

A free online course can be very convenient because it allows students to listen to lectures on and complete assignments sent to them electronically from the comfort of their home with no need to fight traffic, leave work early for class, or miss important family time.

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More Interaction and Greater Ability to Concentrate

students find it easier to participate and interact in online classes more than face to face offline sessions where there is no form of pressure, shyness, and fear.

Career Advancement

An online course is an added advantage to any student. Therefore, earning an online degree helps one elevate career-wise as it can be sited in one’s resume thus increasing one’s viability and potency status.

It is also a sure sign of ambitiousness to prospective employers and friends at large.

Transfer Credits

Online courses give students or college students who want to attend summer classes, but live too far from their colleges and/or work summer jobs, to take online classes from an accredited college and transfer the credits to their primary college..

Colleges that offer free online GIS courses

There are several colleges in the world that offer free online GIS courses. They include;

University of California, Davis

The University of California, Davis is a public teaching and research university located in Davis, California just west of Sacramento. The university offers 77 online courses in GIS. It has over 70k online learners.

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Pennsylvania State University

Pennsylvania State University is a nationally recognized Research-I institution that combines academic hassles with vibrant campus life and teaches students to be global leaders. It offers 13 (5-8 weeks) long free online GIS courses.

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University of West Florida

The University of West Florida, also known as West Florida, is a mid-sized public university and a member institution of the State University System of Florida. It is located in Pensacola, Florida, United States and offers 4 free online GIS courses. 

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Pace University

Pace’s university provides quality education for busy professionals and academicians through their campuses and wide selection of online degrees – including undergraduate and graduate programs as well as online professional certificates.

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Job Prospects In GIS

Certified GIS students can find a wide range of job prospects in any of these fields listed below;

  • government departments
  • research organizations
  • utility companies, such as gas, electricity, and water
  • architecture and engineering firms
  • telecommunications companies
  • retail organizations, including financial and leisure services
  • environmental consultancies
  • insurance companies
  • police authorities and emergency services, including all the motor vehicle rescue services and the armed forces
  • market research groups and advertising agencies
  • private healthcare companies
  • non-governmental organizations (NGOs

In each and any of these offices, they can work as a GIS manager, climate scientist, conservationist, forester, health geographer, Helicopter Fighter, App developer, Geospatial analyst, among others.

10 Top Free Online Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Courses

Below is a detailed list of 10 top free online GIS courses with certificates for you in 2022. We’ve also included the duration, the quality of education, nature of course work offered and ease of access, average earnings of graduates, accreditation, number of enrolled students and several other relevant factors.

  • Cartography
  • Going Places with Spatial Analysis
  • Geospatial and Environmental Analysis
  • Geodesign: Change Your World
  • GIS Data Formats, Design and Quality
  • Intro to Mapping and GIS for Journalists
  • Fundamentals of GIS
  • Imagery, Automation, and Applications
  • Geospatial Intelligence & the Geospatial Revolution
  • Getting Started with GIS

1. Cartography

Duration: 6 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

First on our list of best free online GIS courses in 2022 is the cartography course. This course involves coaching from experienced cartographers and practical, hands-on exercises using ArcGIS Pro and you will learn how to make better maps. 

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At the end of this course, you’ll become a smarter mapmaker, ready to go beyond the defaults and make better maps.

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2. Going Places With Spatial Analysis

Duration: 2-3 hours long for 6 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

This Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) is created for individuals with knowledge about data analysis and want to learn about the special capabilities of spatial data analysis. Spatial analysis is a high demand by organizations around the world and it focuses on location to gain a deeper understanding of data. You’ll get free access to the full analytical capabilities of ArcGIS Online, Esri’s cloud-based GIS platform.

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3. Geospatial and Environmental Analysis

Duration: 4 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

Geospatial and Environmental Analysis is offered by the University of California, Davis via Coursera, and focuses on analysis tools,3D data, working with rasters, projections, and environment variables. 

 

At the end of the course, you’ll learn how to do the following;

  • Create 3-dimensional surfaces
  • Create triangulated irregular networks (TIN) and modify rasters to 3D data
  • Develop and analyze data for the geospatial analysis project
  • Design color ramps for your data.

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4. Geodesign: Change Your World

Duration: 3-5 hours per week for five (5) weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

This course deploys creativity to connect information to people, using collaboration to better inform how we design our world. It provides tools to inform choices about how we live!.

This course includes well-illustrated lectures by the tutors, and guest lectures each week to ensure you are hearing a variety of viewpoints. At the end of each week, you will also be able to examine what geodesign is through interactive mapping that showcases real-word cases.

The course is taught by Pennsylvania University via Coursera.

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5. GIS Data Formats, Design, and Quality

Duration: 4 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

This course is the second in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialization, and provides in-depth  knowledge on common data types (such as raster and vector data), structures, quality and storage during four week-long modules.

The four (4) week-long course is currently in progress and taught in English.

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6. Intro to Mapping and GIS for Journalists

Duration: Self-paced

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

This is a self paced course that teaches the basics of telling stories with geographic data, geographic concepts and best practices from a journalist’s perspective, including what types of datasets make good maps will be covered. This online GIS course is available for everyone. 

There will also be practical classes on how to use free GIS (Geographic Information System) software to explore, analyze and visualize data.

Upon completion of this course, you will be able to think critically about when to use geographic data for storytelling and apply your skills to analyze geographic data and make your own maps.

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7. Fundamentals of GIS

Duration: 4 weeks

Language: English

In the fundamentals of GIS course, you will learn the basics of the industry’s leading software tool, ArcGIS, during four week-long modules. This includes a quick overview of GIS and what’s great about it, a first look at ArcGIS and identifying key elements in the interface, and defining core geospatial concepts and terminology. In Section 2, options for desktop GIS, the history of GIS, how it’s used today and a whole lot more will be discussed too.

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APPLY NOW

8. Imagery, Automation, and Applications

Duration: In-progress

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

This course covers spatial analysis and applications within GIS during four week-long modules. This is after learning about ArcGIS, complete technical tasks such raster calculations and suitability analysis. In this class you will get conversant with.

You’ll be introduced to the electromagnetic spectrum and learn all about remotely sensed and satellite imagery, how to use ModelBuilder to create large processing workflows that use parameters, preconditions, variables, and a new set of tools and a whole lot more..

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9. Geospatial Intelligence & the Geospatial Revolution

Duration:6-9 hours a week for 5 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

The Geospatial Intelligence & the Geospatial revolution course will covers everything you need to learn about GEOINT’s application in business, law enforcement, and defense. Advances in satellites, GPS, unmanned aerial systems, wireless communications, handheld computing, and the ability to automate laborious map analysis processes have transformed what used to be called geographic intelligence, or GEOINT, and the nature of the insights provided to managers and leaders.

GEOINT is more than just analysts working with GIS in a secure intelligence facility. They’ve grown from mountains of hardcopy maps to amazing automated systems that provide a previously unavailable understanding.

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10. Getting Started with GIS

Duration: 5 weeks

Language: English

Certificate: You will be certified at the end of this free online course

In this course, you will learn the fundamental components and capabilities of GIS and discover how ArcGIS can help organizations and people to visualize and analyze data to help solve spatial problems, make smarter decisions and address business needs. 

In addition, this course will help you understand the fundamental concept that underlies the use of GIS, and you will be able to explain how ArcGIS enables organizations to address business needs.

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FAQs on 10 free Online GIS Courses in 2022 (With Certificates)

GIS, fully known as a geographic information system, is a framework for gathering, managing, and analyzing data. It is rooted in the science of geography, and it integrates many types of data, analyzes spatial locations and uses maps and 3D scenes to organize layers of information into visualizations to reveal deeper data insights, such as patterns, relationships, and situations, and display and analyze data. This helps users tell powerful stories and foretell outcomes as well as make smarter decisions.  

Can I get a free online GIS Course?

Yes, you can enroll for any of the 10 free online GIS courses in 2022. These online GIS courses also award certificates at the end of the course.

Conclusion

Online GIS courses will provide an in-depth knowledge on geographic information systems and how Individuals and corporate organizations use it to create maps that communicate ideals, perform analysis, share information, and solve complex problems around the world. 

These free online GIS courses in 2022 will award you a certificate of completion after enrolling and successfully completing the course.

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