What will I learn?

The certificate program in geospatial applications of unmanned aerial vehicles provides post-baccalaureate students with the basic knowledge necessary to become an FAA-licensed small Unmanned (sUAS) remote pilot. This nine credit hour certificate program focuses on obtaining and analyzing airborne imagery to yield accurate 2-dimensional maps of earth surface land cover and vegetation health, digital surface/terrain models, and 3-dimensional models.

Skills acquired

Students who complete this certificate will be able to:

Master the body of aviation-related knowledge needed to become an FAA licensed sUAS remote pilot.
Develop flight plans for acquiring imagery for earth surface mapping.
Acquire ground control points for georeferencing and accuracy assessment.
Use photogrammetric software to process overlapping images to create 2-D orthophotomosaics and 3-D models.


The certificate consists of three classes:

AVS 5300–Unmanned Aerial Systems I
GEOG 5830–Remote Sensing
GEOG 5840–Digital Photogrammetry

Which department am I in?

College of Arts and Sciences

Study options

Full Time (9 credit hours)

Tuition fees
US$13,244.00 per year
Start date

Expected January, September 2022


College of Arts and Sciences

Western Michigan University,

1903 W Michigan Ave,



49008, United States

Entry requirements

For students from United States

A completed Bachelor’s Degree with a 3.0 GPA or higher

For international students

An applicant with a bachelor’s degree

Minimum English proficiency test scores:

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): 80 iBT

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic: 6.5

Pearson Test of English, Academic Module (PTE): 54

Michigan English Test (MET): 57

Application deadlines:

Fall: April 1; Spring: August 1

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


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