Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences
John A. Dutton e-Education Institute

Learn about Geospatial Technology Project Management

In GEOG 871, we'll take a critical look at geospatial project management. Project management is a broad discipline that encompasses technical methods such as system design and analysis and also interpersonal factors that affect professional relationships. Project management is also a discipline that has matured outside of, but can be incorporated into, geospatial technology. By the end of this course, you'll have devised a project plan from a scenario built upon a real-life project involving the city of Metropolis geodatabase. We'll work through each of the components in an organized and logical manner and will incorporate constructive peer review to help everyone achieve the best product possible.

What You'll Learn in GEOG 871

Understanding concepts and best practices of geospatial technology project management is critical for being an effective leader in the geospatial industry. This course will prepare you with the skills necessary to plan for project success, from understanding the use of a charter, to building a work breakdown structure and budget, to planning around inherent risks and providing quality deliverables.

Technologies You'll Use

Students work with project management software in this course for creating work breakdown structures and budgets. Most students use Microsoft Project, but others chose to explore a variety of open source alternatives.

View the Syllabus

What’s the best way to determine if this class is for you? Check out the syllabus! This page shows all materials, how you’ll be graded, and lists assignments and a timeline for the class.

Degree & Certificate Programs

This class is part of Penn State's award winning Online Geospatial Education portfolio of programs, which includes the Master of GIS degree and certificates in GIS, GEOINT, and Remote Sensing. All of these programs are taught online and designed around the needs of working professionals.

let's talk

Questions about this course or our programs? We're here to help! You can talk to our faculty or touch base with students who have taken this class.

What Our Students Say

"The course gave me the skills and confidence to put together a project plan for a geospatial project."

- Brittney White, Esri

"After taking this course, I can better interpret proposal requirements and also leverage project management software to help keep projects organized. The course should be very helpful to aspiring or existing project managers, but also teaches broadly applicable skills for all GIS professionals."

- Ben Alonzo, GISP

"This course has helped tremendously in advancing my knowledge and skill in managing GIST based solutions within my organization. I’ve been able to apply this knowledge directly to my work."

- Duane (JT) Treadon, GISP

Meet the Faculty

Pat Kennelly

I have a bachelor's degree in geology, a master's degree in geophysics, and a Ph.D. in geography. Additionally, I have twelve years of work experience in industry, state government, and consulting. Five of those years I was a GIS manager or project manager. I am currently a Professor of Geography at Long Island University in New York and a Visiting Professor of Geography at Penn State University. On the home-front, life is also busy and exciting. My wife Sharon is the executive director of a regional theater in our town of Port Washington. Our three children - Ethan, Jamie, and Ryan - help to ensure that we never get bored. We like to take advantage of all that Long Island has to offer, especially the beautiful beaches and the nearby grandparents!

Pete Croswell
My name is Pete Croswell - I want to welcome all of you to this course and I look forward to working with you over the next 3 months. As you are aware, GEOG 871 is a requirement for Penn State's Online GIS Masters program. My goal is to to support your study and provide practical guidance and advice to enhance and expand your skills in managing GIS projects and related information technology initiatives. After many years of managing and working on many types of GIS and IT projects, I've come to believe that effective project management is over 50% "applied common sense" and the rest is learning and becoming comfortable with proven tools and methods. Many of you already have experience with IT or GIS project planning and management. I hope to build on this experience to help you become more efficient and effective in your work. As we go through the course, I encourage all of you to ask me for help and direction but also share your ideas and experience with me and the other students.

Online Geospatial Education Programs

This course is part of Penn State’s Online Geospatial Education portfolio of programs. For more information on our award-winning courses, certificates, and degree options, click below.