Learn more about our program, tuition information, and the UW-Madison Geography department.


We offer an amazing online Master of Science program designed for working professionals. Applications are currently being accepted for Fall 2017. Apply by April 15, 2017 for first consideration. 

The 32-credit GIS and Web Map Programming (GisWMP) degree teaches exactly what you need to advance your GIS career and stay relevant for years to come.

Unlike many of our competitors, our program focuses on GIS Development. Topics include programming, mobile app creation, and web map scripting. Our courses are designed to build off of one another and reinforce your skills as you go through the curriculum.

With your Master’s, not only will you earn a degree of distinction from a world-renowned geography department, you’ll graduate confident in your programming skills.

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Top 5 Ranking

UW-Madison Geography is ranked in the TOP 5 of US Geography Graduate Programs.

(And has been for over 20 straight years!)



Each credit has a flat rate of $800. The program consists of eight (8), four (4) credit courses. Each course is $3,200 and the entire program costs $25,600.

As a special offer to our first several cohorts, we are locking the tuition rate at $800 per credit for as long as you are enrolled. If we raise tuition next year, your rate will remain $800 per credit.

We like to keep it simple. So there are no hidden student or technology fees. Your tuition is a flat fee. You may need to purchase some software, but this should not cost more than about $250 during the length of the program. All you need is internet access and a computer (PC/Mac are both fine).

Financial Aid

Regardless of how many courses you take, you’re eligible for Federal Student Aid. To apply for financial aid, please visit the FAFSA Website and complete the online registration. When applying for aid you will need the University of Wisconsin – Madison Institution Code: 003895.

For more information about Federal Student Aid, please visit the UW Office of Student Financial Aid.

Being a Student Again Has Major Benefits

Beyond your world-class M.S. degree, your tuition provides you:

Free copy of ArcMap

Full access to Lynda.com

Amazon Prime at a student rate

Microsoft software at extremely reduced prices

Adobe CC Suite for $20/month


Arthur H. Robinson at his desk in Science Hall

Arthur H. Robinson working on his projections.

The Master’s in Cartography/GIS was founded by Arthur H. Robinson, the Grandfather of American academic cartography.

Dr. Robinson established the University of Wisconsin as the foremost center of academic research and teaching in the map sciences.

From cartography, the University of Wisconsin would evolve into a global leader in GIS. We are proud to continue the evolution. The Online Professional Master’s represents the newest branch of this renowned Master’s degree.

Join us to become a part of our storied history. You will receive the same degree as everyone who went through this program — Master of Science in Cartography/GIS.

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Write Code, Not a Thesis

No thesis necessary. Our master’s emphasizes what employers are looking for — PROGRAMMING SKILLS.

Check out our features and courses.


The University of Wisconsin–Madison has run an award-winning Master’s of Science in Cartography/GIS for many decades.

The curriculum of our Master’s program is continually revised to teach the latest technologies and techniques in the field of applied GIS and map design. This new online Master’s is the latest pedagogical adjustment in the evolution of the degree. It is by far one of our most ambitious modifications.

Applied GIS is important. However, research has shown that GIS programming, mobile applications, and web mapping our the technologies that are increasingly in demand today and will be for years to come. This is why we have re-created our Master’s to offer professional students an opportunity to focus on these these skill areas.

The shift from the paper to mobile/web medium caused some mayhem in the GIS industry. Those with a degree in GIS or cartography from as recently as 2005 were suddenly dealing with the challenges of new mediums that do not play well with certain print concepts.

Another aspect of this revolution is that Applied GIS is less marketable than GIS development and programming. Unfortunately, many Professional GIS degrees still focus on application, rather than tool creation.

Our new program is here to fill this void.

Student Success

Our students have won over 20 GIS and map awards in the past decade. From CaGIS to NACIS, UW-Madison students earn the accolades.

Students from our Geog 575 class (a part of our online program) recently won awards with two of their final projects:

Map of Sandy Tweets

2013 NACIS Best Student Interactive Cartography Award. Click image to use the map.

Our students' 50 Years of Change map won best Narrative Map at NACIS 2013.

2013 NACIS Best Narrative Map. Designed with D3. Click image to use the map.