Culminating Experiences in Geospatial Intelligence

Course Orientation

Welcome to GEOG 594A

About the Orientation

The orientation serves as your guide to the structure of the course and to our online learning environment.


  • Geospatial Intelligence Certificate students must complete GEOG 594A (1 credit) as the last course of the certificate program to demonstrate an understanding of the integration of GIS and remote sensing into geospatial analysis.
  • iMPS-HLS students must complete GEOG 594B (2 credits) as the last course of the masters program to demonstrate a high-level of analytic and writing competency.


The seminar's overarching aim is to enhance your understanding of the role of geospatial intelligence, develop individual competencies, reinforce professional concepts, and improve geospatial analytical techniques and methods.

This Class is Conducted As a Seminar

A "seminar," according to Webster's dictionary, is a group of advanced students studying under a professor, with each doing original research and all exchanging results through reports and discussions. The "seminar'" method of teaching is based on Socrates' theory that it is more important to enable students to think for themselves than to merely fill their heads with "right" answers. Therefore, he regularly engaged his pupils in dialogues by responding to their questions with questions, instead of answers. This process encourages divergent thinking rather than convergent.

Dialogue is exploratory and involves the suspension of biases and prejudices. Dialogue is characterized by:

  • examining our own work without defensiveness;
  • exposing our reasoning and looking for limits to it;
  • communicating our underlying assumptions;
  • exploring viewpoints more broadly and deeply;
  • being open to disconfirming data;
  • approaching someone who sees a problem differently not as an adversary, but as a colleague in common pursuit of better solution.

Participants in a seminar respond to one another with respect by carefully listening instead of interrupting. Students are encouraged to "paraphrase" essential elements of another's ideas before responding, either in support of or in disagreement.

The next page in this lesson outlines the steps you need to perform to successfully complete this orientation.