Exam Candidate Information



Additional Exam preparation materials can be found here: Exam Preparation Info


Exam Candidate Manual

 The exam measures professional competence and preparing for and passing it requires mastery of material.  This is what GISCI and the industry are about, and a mastery of core geospatial material is what we intend to measure. 

Consistent with that philosophy, we have produced the first round of preparation materials, available below as the Exam Candidate Manual.   The Knowledge areas are correlated  to  the GIS&T Body of Knowledge, and each area of that publication has the most consolidated list of references that will provide in-depth reading within that specific GIS&T Knowledge Area.  The exam tests knowledge at the core of each knowledge area in a software agnostic manner. 

The exam we crafted is meant to measure a level of geospatial competence acquired over the course of an individual's career, and there is no simple pathway that can be provided to allow a shortcut in knowledge acquisition.   We have chosen to provide a description of the knowledge areas to be covered in a specific enough way to allow for an understanding of exam content, and we then rely upon an individual's own ability and initiative to explore resources available that will provide the level of knowledge needed to pass the exam, based on her or his present level of experience and training. 

Each individual is urged to take the exam seriously, regardless of educational background or experience level, and the prep information will help you to assess your strengths and weaknesses regarding the exam material.  


The current Exam Candidate Manual can be found here:   this exam blueprint description information will be updated as more complete references come available.

 Exam Candate Manual

Exam Blueprint 2019




The exam questions cover the  Knowledge Categories in the 2019 Revised Exam Blueprint, below:

  • Conceptual Foundations (10%)
  • Geospatial Data Fundamentals (15%)
  • Cartography & Visualization (10%)
  • Data Acquisition (11%)
  • Data Manipulation (11%)
  • Analytical Methods (11%)
  • Database Design & Management (10%)
  • Application Development (7%)
  • Systems Design & Management (7%)
  • Professional Practice (8%)

For more information on these areas, consult the Exam Candidate Manual, available as a download higher on this page.

GISCI has produced a Practice Exam available for download here (this is designed only to acquaint candidates with the exam format):

GISCI Practice Exam 1

In addition consult the UCGIS-produced GIS&T Body of Knowledge, 1st Ed (available from the AAG), providing  more specific references from each Knowledge Category. 

We anticipate that an official practice exam produced from retired exam questions will become available from GISCI in  the first half of 2020.   The 2016 Updated GIS&T Body of Knowledge is available from UCGIS.  

For other questions, contact Bill Hodge, Executive Director