Graduate profiles

Here's what some of our graduates had to say about Edinburgh's GIS programmes.

Course variety

Stefanie Blacker, Graduated 2009

I enjoyed the MSc GIS programme because of the variety of classes, labs and field trips offered. This provided me with hands-on experience and facilitated self-learning. The dissertation aspect of the masters was a very rewarding experience.

I had the opportunity to travel to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and complete a research project that suited my interests, whilst gaining skills that are applicable to the job market. There is also a great support system between staff and students on the programme.

The great thing about the programme is that a wide range of courses is offered.

Niall Carter

2008 graduate

Niall Carter, Graduated 2008

The first half of the MSc contained the taught part and manages to offer all possible choices for people, to either focus on development or more user based and/or remote sensing components of GIS. The great thing about the programme is that a wide range of courses is offered, with the opportunity to specialise within the dissertation part.

During the second half I worked with the Scottish Government as part of the 'One Scotland, One Geography' Geographical Information strategy. This was a great experience and I hope to have my work adopted by the government for wider implementation. The skills I learnt weren't restricted to the technical aspects but included development of project management, presentation and team working skills.

Rob Dunfey, Graduated 2003

The GIS Masters at Edinburgh is the complete package. It offered a great opportunity to grasp the foundations that underpin modern geographic information science and thoroughly investigate areas which particularly interested me. The variety of the lectures and practicals provided an academic challenge, while the dissertation gave me the confidence with the technical aspects which I really enjoyed.

I was able to work on something completely novel which was written up as a paper in the Computers and Geosciences journal. The university proactively fosters a strong alumni network, meaning another big benefit was realised after the programme had finished with plentiful job opportunities.

Job opportunities

Melissa Fedrigo, Graduated 2009

Additional school facilities covering work-related issues and computer skills are available at your fingertips. Their use during the year made my transition into the working world a success, as I secured a job before the programme finished.

Edinburgh's MSc in GIS prepared me for entering the job market better than any course taken previously.

Jimmy Batcheller

2002 graduate

Sen Li, Graduated 2008

The seminars included presentations by industrial leaders in the field of GIS and notable scholars from academia. Thus it not only reinforced our understating of contemporary GIS concepts but broadened our practical knowledge, as well as providing us with the opportunity to establish contacts for our impending careers.

Lindsay Agnew, Graduated 2005

I was able to choose a dissertation topic directly relevant to my aim of working in the mining industry, with support from both inside and outside Edinburgh University. Soon after graduating, I was hired by a major mining company, and am currently working on site in South America, integrating GIS methods with traditional exploration fieldwork.

Hadewij Sint, Graduated 2002

The MSc in GIS course in Edinburgh allowed me to change my career and find great new job opportunities. As a mature student I was quite worried going back to being a student, but the course subjects were so interesting that I even managed to attend all the extra classes which were not part of my exam subjects.

To gain as much knowledge as possible in my limited time as a student, was a priority. I got all that and more. Although it was hard work, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and ended up with a whole new bunch of friends for life.

The programme at Edinburgh was geared towards gaining skills that enable you to fully understand GIS and then grow beyond GIS, which inevitably makes you a lot more employable.

Niall Carter

2008 graduate

Jimmy Batcheller, Graduated 2002

Edinburgh's MSc in GIS prepared me for entering the job market better than any course taken previously.

With quality academic and support staff that are as knowledgeable as they are approachable, having the opportunity to live such a vibrant city and coming away with a qualification that is recognised globally as the foremost degree in GIS, I look back upon my period in the MSc as time very much well spent.

Mike Forster, Graduated 1997

I took the MSc in GIS after working for nine years. I wanted a break and a change of job. After graduating I still live in Edinburgh and run a company producing geographical visualisation software so for me the MSc delivered everything I expected.

Research and Academia

Ellie Bates, Graduated 2008

Overall the experience of the MSc GIS programme at Edinburgh, in particular the quality of the support and education received and the contacts made, was directly responsible for me being able to secure a funded a PhD place at the University of Edinburgh to enable me to continue to pursue my research interests.

Peter Walker, Graduated 2008

The dissertation component was very rewarding, as it gave me the freedom to explore my own topics of interest. I have since presented my dissertation at a conference, giving me my first publication and something else to add to my CV.

Networking opportunities and further interests

Zoe Shen, Graduated 2011

Seminars, lectures and conferences provided us with the opportunity to network with contacts from industries such as GIS consulting, oil, governmental planning, mapping and surveying.

In addition, the wide variety of student unions allow abundant opportunities to explore academic or non-academic interests. For example, I got the chance to further my interest in business through the Edinburgh University Trading and Investment Club and the Edinburgh University Marketing and Communication Society.

The city of Edinburgh

The city has it all, beaches, hills, history, a great nightlife and a fantastic summer festival.

Niall Carter

2008 graduate

Peter Walker, Graduated 2008

Edinburgh and Scotland have so much to offer. Joining the Mountaineering club enabled me to get out into the Highlands and see some of the beautiful Scottish countryside, as well as providing a weekend get-away from the coursework. Edinburgh is a great city to live in, with lots going on and there's always something new to explore when time allows!

Student Life

It is important to have a good work-life balance, and there are plenty opportunities to meet other students socially through the Students’ Association, Student Unions and our top sports and exercise facilities.


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