Engineering Technology - Geomatics

Engineering Technology - Geomatics - AAS

If you’d like to prepare for a career in a growing field that won’t confine you to an office, then check out the Geomatic Engineering Technology associate degree program at Bellingham Technical College. You can put your math and computer skills to work as a surveying and mapping technician or land surveyor in a construction firm; a surveying and engineering firm; a mining, oil or gas company; a public utility; or a government agency, such as U.S. Geological Survey, Department of Natural Resources, the Bureau of Land Management, or the U.S. Forestry Service.

BTC’s associate degree in Geomatics includes training in GIS, AutoCAD and GPS skills, as well as gain a working knowledge of Washington laws and standards related to surveying, boundaries and map preparation.


Employment Information

Data are provided on a program (not credential) level

69% BTC graduate placement rate1

$63,611 starting annual wage2
$84,353 average annual wage2
$110,212 potential annual wage2


  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    1Employment data come from the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) and reflect WA/OR employment for students enrolled at BTC between 2016-17 and 2018-19. Students are included in the employment rate if they left with a credential. Rates are not shown for programs with fewer than 10 students meeting the above criteria.

    2Wage data come from Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) 2020 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates (Washington State wage) and reflect 2015-2018 employment. Wage data represent occupations that BTC faculty have identified as the most relevant career paths for program graduates. Note that these wages reflect employees with varying educational levels/credentials. For cases in which multiple occupations have been identified by faculty, a weighted percentile is calculated using each occupation’s percentile wage and employment size estimate. Wages are not shown for programs for which occupations do not meet the ESD’s minimum thresholds for publishing. If the program has wage data from the Washington SBCTC that involves shift work, these ESD wages reflect the same number of hours used in the annual wage calculation. Starting wage = 25th percentile, median wage = 50th percentile, wage potential = 75th percentile.

Estimated Program Costs

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

Students may begin working toward this degree quarterly.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

Admissions application and assessment testing in Reading, Math and Writing is required. Your score on the test and/or your previous transcripts will determine where you begin your course sequence. Contact Admissions at 360.752.8345 or at for assistance with academic planning.

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 98

  • Academic Core

  • AMATH 111Applied Technical Math5 CR
  • (Can substitute MATH& 141 for AMATH 111)
  • ENGL& 101English Composition I5 CR
  • CMST& 220Public Speaking5 CR
  • (Can substitute CMST& 210 for CMST& 220)

  • TOTAL Academic Core Course Credits
    15 CR
  • Engineering Core

  • ENGR 115Graphics5 CR
  • ENGT 134AutoCAD I5 CR
  • ENGT 135AutoCAD II5 CR

  • TOTAL Engineering Core Course Credits
    15 CR
  • Technology Course Work

  • CET 102Fundamentals Of Surveying I5 CR
  • CET 103Fundamentals Of Surveying II5 CR
  • CET 110Construction And Highway Surveys5 CR
  • ENGT 132Engineering Applications Using MS Office5 CR
  • CET 141Fundamentals Of GIS & GPS5 CR
  • CET 142Intermediate GIS5 CR
  • CET 143Advanced GIS Applications5 CR
  • CET 205Survey of Public Lands5 CR
  • CET 210Boundary Law & Land Description5 CR
  • CET 215Environmental Mapping5 CR
  • CET 220GPS Systems5 CR
  • CET 225Advanced Survey Seminar5 CR
  • CET 251AutoCAD Civil 3D I5 CR

  • TOTAL Geomatics Core Course Credits
    65 CR
  • Engineering Electives

  • CET 252AutoCAD Civil 3D II5 CR
  • CET 230Estimating And Scheduling5 CR
  • BUS 123Records Management3 CR
  • ENGR 100Engineering Orientation2 CR

  • TOTAL Engineering Elective Credits
    3 CR

Program Outcomes

  • Graduates will demonstrate competency in basic GIS and surveying and mapping skills;
  • Graduates will prepare for the Level I Survey Technical Exam given by the Career Development Committee of LSAW;
  • Graduates will possess the ability to prepare a topographic map of a parcel of property that is evaluated by WAC 332-130 standards;
  • Graduates will demonstrate entry level competency in using CAD skills;
  • Graduates will demonstrate a working knowledge of the Global Positioning System (GPS) as well as demonstrate a working knowledge of Washington Law related to surveying and boundaries;
  • Graduates will receive, interpret, and convey written, verbal, and graphic information.

Employment Outlook

Employment of surveying and mapping technicians is expected to increase faster than average nationally. Job openings will continue to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to other occupations or leave the labor force altogether.

The average annual wage in this field is $64,970, with an earning potential of about $77,808 per year.*

Criminal convictions may restrict or prevent student participation with internships and employment in this industry.

Most program graduates work as surveying and mapping technicians and are employed in direct field service. Opportunities exist in construction companies, private surveying and engineering firms, mining, oil, and gas extraction companies, public utilities, and city, county, state, and federal government agencies (i.e., U.S. Forestry Department, Department of Natural Resources, Department of Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, and Bureau of Land Management).

Faculty & Support

</p> Chris began his career in surveying in the mountains of Colorado in 1978, working in the oilfield. He travelled extensively in the western United States, working from south Texas to several miles south of the Canadian border, and from eastern Oklahoma to western Nevada. Wishing to settle down, he attended a technical school in Arizona, learning more about the math, drafting, and fieldwork involved in engineering related surveying. </p> Chris eventually ended up in Flagstaff, AZ, working for the Environmental Impact Statement on Glen Canyon Dam, where he was responsible for establishing a survey control network through the Grand Canyon for the Bureau of Reclamation’s GIS project. He started Spatial Science Solutions, a GIS firm shortly before receiving his degree, and has continued this business in a limited way since then. He returned for a third stint with Arizona Engineering to start a GIS department in 2004. </p> Chris came to Bellingham Technical College in 2010 be the Surveying and Mapping program instructor. </p>

  • Degrees and Credentials

    B.S., Geography, Northern Arizona University - 2010

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2010

    B.S., Geography, Northern Arizona University - 2010

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2010

Tim Stettler is a Civil Engineering Instructor at Bellingham Technical College (BTC). He has a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Washington State University and an A.A.S. in Civil Engineering from Spokane Community College. In addition to his 14 year role at BTC, Tim worked with the Spokane County Engineering Department and with other private engineering firms for a total seven years designing and constructing a variety of Infrastructure projects including stream restoration and mitigation, roadway, bridge, sewer, and waterline projects. Tim also has 18 years of heavy industrial construction and construction management experience. His most recent projects have included the Ronald Regan Office building, the Seventh and Flower subway station, and the Palisades Promenade Building in Los Angeles California. He has also worked on refineries, power plants, and waste to energy plants.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2007

    A.A.S., Civil Engineering, Spokane Community College - 2007

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2007

    A.A.S., Civil Engineering, Spokane Community College - 2007

    B.S., Civil Engineering, Washington State University - 2007

    B.S., Civil Engineering, Washington State University - 2007