This is apropros threads like Recommend topics to be included in a Computer Science for Geospatial Technologies course and How much math does a GIS Analyst need to know?. People interested in such matters of professional GIS education and preparation may wish to participate in some (credible) research being conducted. Here is the notice.

Please help me with my research.

You are invited to participate in a survey, entitled "Creating Online Communities of Practice for Mentoring." The study is being conducted by Dr. Michael N. DeMers, Department of Geography at New Mexico State University as part of a Healthy Departments grant from the Association of American Geographers.

Dr. Michael N. DeMers
Department of Geography
New Mexico State University
MSC MAP, P.O. Box 30001
141 Breland Hall
Las Cruces, NM 88003
Phone: (575) 496-5231

The purpose of this study is to examine educational needs of GIS professionals, the degree to which they find those needs having been met by their pre-professional education, and the likelihood of and best approaches to develop online learning communities of practice (CoP) to develop workforce ready employees through pre-professional education.

Your participation in the survey will contribute to a better understanding of the learning needs of GIS professionals and the degree to which communities of practice are practical and how they could most effectively be developed. I estimate that it will take about 6 to 12 minutes of your time to complete the questionnaire. You are free to contact the investigator at the above address and phone number to discuss the survey.

Risks to participants are considered extremely minimal. There will be no costs for participating, nor will you benefit from participating except that you will learn about perceptions of GIS education and the utility and practicality of GIS educational communities of practice. No identification information will be collected from this survey and I will be the only person to see the results.

Your participation in this survey is voluntary. You may decline to answer any question and you have the right to withdraw from participation at any time without penalty. If you have any questions or would like us to email another person from your institution or update your email address, please call Michael N. DeMers, Ph.D. at the phone number above. Compiled and analyzed results from the survey will be provided through formal publications and on the Associate of American Geographers' Healthy Departments web. Feel free to contact me for the link to that website which will be available only after the analysis is complete.

To complete the survey, click on the link below:


This study has been reviewed and approved by the New Mexico State University Institutional Review Board. If you have questions about your rights as a study participant, or are dissatisfied at any time with any aspect of this study, you may contact - anonymously, if you wish -

Office of Compliance
New Mexico State University, MSC 3RES
Anderson Hall
Box 30001
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001
Phone: (575) 646-7177
Fax: (575) 646-2480

Email: [email protected]

IRB Approval Number: [7409]

Thank you for helping me improve our GIS workforce education.

  • This question is not appropriate for our main site because it is too localized in time. It would be difficult to present it in chat. I hope the community finds that it is ok here on meta, despite its very loose connection with the operation of our site. Contrary opinions are welcome! (BTW, I have no connection with Dr. DeMers except by owning one of his books, Fundamentals of GIS, 1997.)
    – whuber
    Feb 15, 2012 at 18:11


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