Spatial / GI Focus

Master of Spatial Information Science

Spatial information is an essential part of our economic infrastructure, underpinning environmental management, land tenure systems, urban planning, public health and much more.

You will learn to apply spatial information in your area of expertise, which may range from computing, geomatics, urban planning, architecture, construction and environments to health. The spatial information industry in Australia is comprised of small, medium and global enterprises, software manufacturers, consultancies, government departments, a broad range of infrastructure providers, as well as banks and insurance companies, using spatial information to manage and track their assets.

Master of Spatial Information Science

200 credit points (2 years full-time / 4 years part-time)
This course offers Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) and Full Fee places.
Local student fees
CSP: $8,613 per 100 credit points in 2014
Full fee: $28,064 per 100 credit points in 2014
International student fees
Full fee: $34,528 per 100 credit points in 2014

Learning Outcomes

Graduates are able to demonstrate competence across the broad field of spatial information science and engineering, and, through a specialization in one other science or engineering discipline of their choice, they have an excellent understanding of interfaces and links with other science and engineering disciplines. The Master of Spatial Information Science program develops breadth of understanding and outlook, and ability to engage with a wide range of technologies and applications, with sufficient depth in one or more specific areas of practice to develop competence in handling technically advanced and complex problems.

Professional Accreditation

The Melbourne School of Engineering has provisional accreditation for the Master of Spatial Information Science from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). It is accredited by EUR-ACE®.

Career outcomes

There is a growing demand for people with expertise in spatial information, along with a current labour shortage in Australia. Career opportunities exist in wide a variety of well-paid employment options, as experts creating spatial data infrastructures,managing infrastructure, facilities or assets (including land), tracking or monitoring the environment or traffic, mapping disasters, epidemics or urban growth, advising governments or firms on locations, and many more. Our graduates find employment in companies and organisations such as Accenture, Deloitte, Geoscience Australia, IBM, Santos, Shell, VicRoads, the Department of Sustainability and Environment and Ericsson.

Geomatics Career Pathways brochure 948kb pdf

IT Career Pathways brochure 765kb pdf

Course Structure

The Master of Spatial Information Science is a 200 point program, which can be completed in two years (four semesters) full-time or four years part-time. The program consists of eight spatial information subjects (six core and two electives), four approved electives from another discipline/(s) and an interdisciplinary research project of 50 points done in one semester or spread over a year.

Example course plan

First year
Core Core MSIS Elective MSIS Elective
Core Core Core Elective
Second year
Elective Elective Elective Core
Research project

Core subjects

The following core subjects must be taken in the Master of Spatial Information Science.

MSIS Specific Elective Subjects

Students must select two of these subjects.

Spatial Information Research Projects

Students must also take 50 points from research projects below.

General Elective Subjects

Students must select four elective subjects. The course allows a combination of four subjects of ANY graduate or postgraduate subjects, pending the course coordinator's approval.

The specific subjects selected will be determined after consultation with the MIS Coordinator taking into account the academic background of the student.

See the Course Handbook for more details

Entry Requirements

A three-year undergraduate degree in an appropriate* discipline with at least a 65% average (University of Melbourne equivalent).

Broad discipline areas include computer science, environments (planning, landscape, and agriculture), economics, cognitive science or public health or other discipline specialisation as approved by the Coordinator.

English Language Requirements

All applicants must meet the University’s English language requirements. For graduate entry an alternative is offered.

English Language Entry Requirements

Research Pathways

Read more about Graduate Pathway options


Wilfred Walters

Solving spatial problems at home and abroad

After graduating, Wilfred Waters joined leading engineering, architecture and environmental consulting company GHD.

Graduating from Melbourne gave me the confidence to apply for a top graduate position at GHD. The work is interesting because I get to solve a wide range of spatial problems.

Recently, Wilfred took leave from this role to take up a voluntary work placement with Engineers Without Borders, as GIS and data management advisor in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

“Working as an advocate for the urban poor in Phnom Penh has opened up a whole new perspective on ways to apply spatial science. I have met many inspiring people working on fascinating projects.”

Wilfred Walters

Spatial Analyst, GHD