I've been asked by my manager to come up with some sort of competency measure for an employees understanding of scripting/programming. Because I am a self taught programmer, I really don't have a formal understanding of how to measure ones level of understanding when it comes to script writing.

We have been using Python in ArcGIS and QGIS. We use VB.Net with our MS Office products and we have started to dabble in Java for web mapping.

I'm wondering if any of you GIS managers out there have some sort of matrix/method to determine your employees skill level when it comes to scripting.


This is a Programmers Competency Matrix. As far as I know there are no such standardized rating systems for GIS scripting, but I might suggest modifying this one - the Programming heading/matrix would be the most relevant and needs little modification to make it relevant to GIS as most of the same principles apply.

The nice thing about a matrix like this is it goes beyond just the syntax/semantics of the script itself - it also looks at the coders' problem solving, communication, and organizational skills; all of which have a huge influence on the end product they are producing.

  • This is a great matrix to start with! Thanks for this. You're right, it covers all the basis. I can use this and customize this for our office. – Mike Apr 25 '13 at 16:32
  • 2
    Take a look at this nice update to the matrix, which allows for a "checkbox" interface. Code available from here. – RyanKDalton Apr 25 '13 at 23:09

I only have basic scripting/programming knowledge and my scripts are quite sloppy. How about possible setting everyone the same task of creating something (which could have multiple methods) to see how people script. For example I wrote a MapBasic program before realising it'd done it very much the long way!

  • Thanks for the suggestion Alan. That might work as a practical exercise, but I need to have some sort of measurable score or matrix that I can use for skills training, task allocation and eventually to reflect pay rates. – Mike Apr 25 '13 at 21:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.