2+1 Track (BA to MS)

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The School of Urban Studies at UW Tacoma offers students who have completed the first two years of their higher education (i.e., 90 credit hours in a quarter system or 60 units in a semester system) the possibility of earning a Bachelor’s degree offered by Urban Studies (Urban Studies or Sustainable Urban Development), a GIS Certificate, and a Master’s degree in Geospatial Technologies in 3 years. The freshman and sophomore coursework can be completed at a 2 or 4 year college/university. Students admitted into this track will follow prescribed set of courses for two years to finish their Urban Studies or Sustainable Urban Development degree and GIS Certificate.  Upon completion of their BA and GIS Certificate with a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher, students who meet the criteria for admission to the Master of Science in Geospatial Technologies will be automatically accepted into the graduate program.  Application to the graduate program is still required by the UW Graduate School.  Those admitted to the MS program will be able to finish their degree requirements in one calendar year (i.e., four quarter).

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Benefits of the 2+1 Program

  • Receiving timely academic advising and a detailed/prescribed degree program for on-time graduation
  • Obtaining an undergraduate and a certificate in GIS within two years (normally it would take more than two years)
  • Guaranteed admittance into the MS program with an undergraduate GPA of 3.5 (see above).
  • Finishing the MS program in one year


The 2+1 program is suitable for students who have finished two years of college and who are ready to commit to full-time enrollment for three years.

Admission to the 2+1 Track will be selective.  At minimum, students should have achieved a GPA of 3.0 or better in their first two years of college.  This translates to a 3.0 in the most recent 90 quarter units or 60 semester units. Students who meet admission criteria should apply during their sophomore year of study. 

If qualifications are met, students will be accepted into the Urban Studies 2+1 Track. This includes a provisional acceptance to the MS in Geospatial Technologies, pending completion of all undergraduate requirements and meeting graduate school admission standards. This includes a minimum of GPA of 3.5 in all courses taken at UW Tacoma (this should translate to 90 units) and successful completion of our GIS certificate program.  Admission into the graduate program cannot be deferred.  If students do not meet the minimum requirements for automatic admission, they may apply independently to the MS program.

How to Apply

Applicants interested in the 2+1 Track must meet with the Urban Studies Advisor to discuss eligibility and complete necessary paperwork. To be admitted to the 2+1 program, applicants must first be admitted to the University of Washington Tacoma, and either the Urban Studies or Sustainable Urban Development major.

To apply as a Urban Studies major, click here.
To apply as a Sustainable Urban Develepment major, click here.

Schedule an advising appointment with the Urban Studies Advisor here: www.meetme.so/urban.

Student Advising

Urban Studies has a dedicated academic advisor, who advises both undergraduate and graduate students for the program. The advisor works closely with 2+1 students to support their success in the program and beyond.


International Students: International students will follow the same requirements set for the 2+1 program, including matriculation into one of the two BA programs in Urban Studies. Admission will also depend on the language proficiency requirements of the BA and the MS programs. 

Additional information and requirements for the GIS Certificate: GIS certificate requires 25 credit hours (i.e., 5 courses).  The required courses will be built into the student’s pathway to BA in either Urban Studies or Sustainable Urban Development. More information available here: www.tacoma.uw.edu/urban-studies/geographic-information-systems-gis-certificate

Additional Information and Requirements for the MS in Geospatial Technologies: 2+1 program students must apply to the MS in Geospatial Technologies by the priority deadline during their senior year. Priority deadline dates and more information on the MSGT available here: www.tacoma.uw.edu/urban-studies/master-science-geospatial-technologies