Certificate in Professional Land Surveying

Professional & Continuing Education

Part Time
Part-Time Degree & Certificate Programs
On Campus

Program Description

Wentworth’s Professional Land Surveying (PLS) Certificate program is intended for professionals who currently work in the land surveying field and seek to become a registered professional land surveyor in Massachusetts.

Each of the six courses take 15-weeks to complete with course offerings in the evening. Students typically take two courses per semester..

Learn more about other Certificate Programs


  • Program Objectives

    The professional certificate in land surveying from Wentworth enables you to:

    • Acquire hands-on experience with field technologies, including field measurement, survey calculations, evidence gathering and assessment, and boundary determination
    • Become adept at publishing and presenting final survey results and applying emerging technologies in your career
    • Gain a professional understanding of regulations affecting the practice of land surveying
  • Admissions Requirements & Tuition

    Applicants must have a minimum of one year of land surveying work experience, have completed pre-requisites in English and Math (pre-calculus) and submit the following:

    • Online application 
    • Current resume 
    • Official transcript(s) from any college(s) you have attended


    • $475 per credit hour 
  • Start Terms

    • Spring
    • Summer
  • Program Curriculum

    • Overview of Surveying Technology (3 credits): This course introduces the student to the various methods and applications of land surveying in the real estate, construction and land development industries. Students will also be introduced to the various technologies employed by professional land surveyors in accomplishing their work, including differential leveling, electronic distance measurement (EDM), electronic data collection, computer-aided design (CAD), the global positioning system (GPS) and geographical and land information systems (GIS/LIS). Prerequisite: ENGL1050 English Composition
    • Surveying Measurement I (4 credits): This course introduces the student to the fundamental theories and techniques for horizontal and vertical measurements with theodolites, automatic levels and steel tapes. Labs include projects in linear measurements, leveling, traversing and stadia surveys. Prerequisite: MATH1065 College Math C
    • Legal Aspects of Land Surveying I (3 credits): This course includes an introduction to the realm of real estate law that is essential to the practice of land surveying and the basics of land surveying research. Real estate law and conveyancing terminology, evidence gathering and research theory will be taught. Key principles of boundary law will be explored such as the relative weight of evidence, sequential and simultaneous conveyances, easements and rights of way, and the public land survey system. Prerequisite: English Composition and Surveying Measurement I
    • Surveying Measurement II (4 credits): This course includes traverse calculation, error analysis, applications of coordinate geometry, horizontal and vertical curve calculations, introduction to geodetic survey principles, basic map projection calculations and the introduction to, and use of, data collection equipment and software. Labs include layout of horizontal and vertical curves, field techniques for boundary layout, data collection and site detail mapping. The final project in this course will involve the detailed surveying and mapping of a section of the campus suitable for use in engineering design, construction or conveyance. Prerequisite: SURV1200 Surveying Measurement I
    • Massachusetts Regulations Affecting the Surveying Profession (3 credits): This course involves the study of those regulations directly affecting the practice of land surveying in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts such as the Registration Law (MGL Chap. 112, Secs. 81D-81T), the regulations of the Board of Registration of Professional Engineers and of Land Surveyors (250 CMR), the Subdivision Control Law (MGL Chap. 41), the Zoning Act (MGL Chap 40A) and the Massachusetts Land Court Manual of Instructions. Students will be introduced to other bodies of regulations often encountered in the practice of land surveying such as municipal subdivision regulations, the Wetlands Protection Act, and the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA). Prerequisite: ENGL1050 English Composition
    • Legal Aspects of Land Surveying II (3 credits): Building on the principles taught in Legal Aspects of Land Surveying I, special boundary topics such as water boundaries, unwritten transfers and writing legal descriptions will be covered, along with the roles of statute and case law in the boundary decision process. Students will complete a final project that will involve the application of legal principles to an actual surveying problem, requiring them to make boundary decisions involving conflicting evidence. Prerequisite: SURV1500 Legal Aspects of Land Surveying I and SURV2200 Surveying Measurement II