To work as a geographic information systems specialist, you typically need to:
- have a high school diploma or equivalent; and
- have a bachelor's degree in geography.
Education after high school
Almost all GIS specialists have a bachelor's degree in geography or computer science. As a student you should take courses in geography, economics, and history. Courses in statistics and database management are also important. You also will need training in drafting and computer cartography.
Working for a geographer is good experience for this field.
Some students complete an internship while in school. This is important work experience for finding a job.
Some branches of the military train people to be international relations officers. While this is not the same as being a geographic information systems specialists, many of the skills transfer between jobs. You need at least a bachelor's degree to enter this military occupation. The length of training depends on your specialty. Additional training occurs on the job.