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GEOG 485
GIS Programming and Software Development
GEOG 485 Course Logo

Bill Gates is credited with saying he would "hire a lazy person to do a difficult job" with the justification that "a lazy person will find an easy way to do it." GEOG 485 doesn't teach the lazy way to get the job done, but it does teach the scripting way - which is arguably even better. You've probably heard the "give a fish"/"teach to fish" saying? That's the gist of GEOG 485: to equip you, in an ArcGIS context, with the ModelBuilder and Python scripting skills to make your repetitive geoprocessing tasks easier, quicker and automatic, so you can focus on the more interesting (and potentially more valuable) work that you (and your employers) really want you to be doing.

At a Glance


Applications in GIS
Geospatial Programming and Software Development
ArcGIS Desktop
ArcGIS Pro
SyllabusGEOG 485 Syllabus

Upcoming Offerings

Semester Instructor
Spring 2, 2024 Jan Oliver Wallgrün, Ph.D.
Summer 2024 Jan Oliver Wallgrün, Ph.D.
Fall 1, 2024 Jeffrey Kling, MGIS
Fall 2, 2024 Jim Detwiler, M.S.

Meet Our Faculty Instructors

What Our Students Say

Made me a better manager.

“With human resources being one of the major constraints of doing more with GIS, automation is a key, if not a necessary, part of our operation. Not only did GEOG 485 make me a better coder, it made me a better manager because now I have a better understanding of where to invest staff hours developing scripting tools to improve speed and accuracy.”

— Jim Daly, GISP

I was able to apply Python at work immediately.

“After taking the class, I was able to apply Python at work immediately. It has helped speed up long processes, and make projects more accurate and efficient. I now feel comfortable investing the time in writing code, instead of approaching things the long way.”

— James Carpenter, GISP

We offer over 30 courses in five 10-week terms each year: two every fall, two every spring and one every summer.