The MSc Geoinformatics addresses the need for technically aware and competent postgraduates to work in the field of geoinformatics, particularly as applied to environmental and resource management. This twelve month full-time course covers both the theoretical and practical aspects of geoinformatics, including Geographical Information Systems and Science (GIS), Remote Sensing (RS), geospatial data analysis and visualisation, programming and internet GIS. The course consists of 60 credits of taught modules, followed by independent research towards a dissertation, written up as an 8,000 word scientific paper, worth 30 credits. In addition to the taught modules, you will have the opportunity to meet practitioners through regular seminars led by experts from Ireland and abroad, visits to local geoinformatics enterprises and attendance at relevant Irish conferences. The course introduces you to the foundational concepts of geoinformatics in the first teaching period, with lectures and practical classes. These skills are developed in the second teaching period with more advanced digital image processing, internet GIS and applications of geoinformatics, again taught through lectures, practical classes and workshops. On completion of the taught modules you undertake the dissertation (research project) in an area of your choice within the geoinformatics discipline over the summer.

Course Practicalities

During the two teaching periods, there are daily classes of one to two hours of lectures followed by two to three hours of practical sessions in the computer lab. For every hour of taught classes, students are expected to spend two to three hours on self-directed study. An overnight stay may be required for attendance at the national conferences, depending on their location. Students are made aware of the dates of these events at the earliest opportunity and they are a compulsory part of the course. Due to the very practical nature of the subject, there is a large element of coursework with many modules assessed entirely through computer-based exercises, written reports, projects and practical activities. Some modules also have practical or written exams at the end of the semester. Students are assessed on valuable transferable skills within written, mathematical, computing, problem-solving and oral assignments, many of which are completed individually or in small groups. The core teaching staff for the course are Dr Fiona Cawkwell, Dr Paul Holloway and Dr Dipto Sarkar, from the Department of Geography, complemented by guest speakers, who are practicing geoinformaticians from a variety of academic, commercial and government settings.

Why Choose This Course

This course is unique in Ireland in offering a diverse range of skills and techniques in GIS, RS, spatial data analysis and visualisation, programming and internet GIS, with an opportunity to develop those skills through an independent dissertation (research project). By drawing on the research interests and expertise within the department, in addition to those of invited speakers, you will be exposed to a wide range of different applications of geoinformatics, allowing you to build on your existing thematic knowledge and skills. You will graduate with a broad knowledge of geospatial techniques that are highly desired by employers, in Ireland and other countries, in a range of applications.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

There are no compulsory placement requirements as part of the course. You are actively encouraged to seek opportunities to develop your skills in a commercial environment and several successful partnerships have been developed in this way.

Entry requirements


Candidates for the MSc in Geoinformatics must normally hold a Second Class Honours, grade I or above, in a primary degree in a cognate area , e.g. Geography, Geology, Environmental Sciences, Computer Science, Physics, Engineering or a cognate discipline.

Candidates with a Second Class Honours, grade II, but with proven experience in an area of Geoinformatics, or with equivalent qualifications in related areas of science and technology, can be considered for a place following interview and/or written or practical assessment by the programme team of the MSc in Geoinformatics.

The number of places is limited and selection will be based on academic achievement, relevant work experience, and a personal statement from the applicant. The Head of Department must approve candidates.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements.

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Subjects taught

Part I

GG6501 Introduction to Geographical Information Systems (5 credits)
GG6502 Introduction to Remote Sensing (5 credits)
GG6504 Digital image Processing (5 credits)
GG6505 Applications of Geoinformatics (10 credits)
GG6531 Computer Programming for GIS Applications (5 credits)
GG6533 Spatial Ecology and GIS (5 credits)
GG6535 Data Visualisation (5 credits)
GG6536 Geospatial Data Analysis (10 credits)
GG6537 Internet GIS (10 credits)

Part II

GG6511 Dissertation in Geoinformatics (30 credits)


1 year full-time


Fees and Costs

The EU fee for this course is €6000.
The Non-EU fee for this course is €14000.

Enrolment dates

Start Date 7 September 2020

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information

You will gain a wide variety of technical skills on this programme, including use of a number of proprietary and open source software and datasets, and the ability to write and adapt computer code. You will be exposed to the use of geoinformatics in a wide range of different environmental disciplines, which will fit you for a variety of different career routes. Many transferable skills are also fostered through different learning approaches, including critical thinking, problem-solving, report writing, oral presentations, statistical analysis, computer programming, independent research and time management.

More details
  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

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