Geography

The broad objective of the academic discipline of Geography is to understand and improve the human environment: Earth. Geography is the study of the relationships between people and their environments, relationships that vary from place to place over the Earth. Geography integrates physical science, social science and the humanities. The Department requires that students understand both physical and human systems and develop the spatial analytical skills to do so.

Physical geography emphasizes the study of surficial processes in the fields of geomorphology, biogeography, and hydrology. Human geography includes cultural, historical, economic, urban, and political geography. One prominent theme is interpretation of places, and the cultural, economic, historical, political, and social factors determining the character and development of places. Geographical Information Science is linked to the other themes. Research is focused on applications of GIS, remote sensing, and related technologies to problems in urban and transportation modeling, landscape ecology, geomorphology, hydrology, and environmental change. Geography education investigates how geography is taught and learned. Topics include spatial learning, effective use of information technology, assessment, and institutional factors in geography education.


A student seeking a Bachelor of Science degree in Geography is expected to choose one of the following selected tracks of focus: Human Geography, Geography of the Natural Environment, or Human-Environment Interactions. For students interested in a career in education, the Department of Geography works closely with the Department of Teaching, Learning and Culture. Geography is part of a Social Studies composite degree program that also prepares students to teach at middle and high school levels.

What do you want to do with Geography?

Career ideas for Geography majors

Aerial Photo Interpreter, Cartographer, Consultant, Environmental Scientist, Geographer, Geologist, GIS Analyst/Manager/Specialist/Technician, Land Surveyor, Land Use Planner, Map Editor, Mapping Designer, Research Analyst, Teacher, and more

Remember: Your major does not equal your career! For more ideas about how to put your education to work, talk with your specific Career Advisor.

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