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Two surveying students working with surveying equipment

Two students working with surveying equipment.

Program Coordinator: Dr. Wes Parks
Phone: (570) 675-9213
Email: wwp3@psu.edu 

The Penn State surveying degrees are offered through the College of Engineering’s School of Engineering Design, Technology and Professional Programs (SEDTAPP). There are only a handful of accredited surveying degree programs in the United States, and Penn State is proud of the fact that both our baccalaureate and associate degree programs are accredited by ABET1.

Since Penn State offers both an associate degree in Surveying Engineering Technology (2 year) and baccalaureate degree in Surveying Engineering (4 year), many students wonder what are the main differences between the programs. This can best be explained by the intent of the programs and a view of the profession. It is estimated that for each professional land surveyor, at least four technicians are required to gather data, reduce, and map data. The Surveying Engineering Technology (2 year) program provides the students with the technical skills using traditional surveying instruments and the computational skills to solve problems typically encountered in boundary and construction surveying. The first two years of both the Surveying Engineering and Surveying Engineering Technology programs share these courses. Additionally, the Surveying Engineering Program (4 year) goes into greater depth in the legal and professional aspects of land surveying, and covers subjects such as image analysis, geographic information systems, geodesy, global positioning systems, stormwater management, and land subdivision design. It also has greater depth in the basic sciences and mathematics, providing the students with the skills to solve tomorrow's problems. Simply stated, the Surveying Engineering Technology program is designed to provide the technicians for the industry, whereas the the Surveying Engineering program is designed to produce the professionals for the industry.

The Penn State programs have courses covering both breadth and depth in the surveying field. Students can specialize in boundary surveying, geodesy, image analysis (photogrammetry and remote sensing), and geographic information systems. Most of the courses involve student projects. And in the past three years, five students have published papers in nationally recognized journals. Striving for excellence is a hallmark of the Penn State Surveying Engineering Program.

Explore the links on the left to learn more about the Penn State Wilkes-Barre Surveying Program.


1 The Surveying Engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org