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Geography: the Science of Place and Space

Geographers ask where things are located on the surface of the earth, why they are located where they are, how places differ from one another, and how people interact with the environment. A major in geography analyzes and explains the location of and interrelationships between human and physical features of the earth’s environment. Geographers also examine how and why features and their locations change over time, with particular interest in the many impacts of these changes on both people and natural settings.

Geography is, therefore, both a social and a physical science. Because its fundamental subject matter is people and their environments, the discipline serves as an effective bridge between the physical and cultural worlds. Majors in geography build solid academic foundations that draw from and interrelate with areas of study from the natural, social and behavioral sciences, humanities, computer science, design, and communication. The Department of Geography has developed three major tracks: environment, mapping & GIS, and cities & societies. Undergraduate geography degrees include a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science degree; graduate degree include the Master of Arts degree and Doctor of Philosophy degree.

What skills does studying geography develop?

  • aptitude for understanding current local and global issues
  • knowledge of the influence of humans on the environment
  • spatial analysis
  • geographic information technologies
  • international and global perspectives on environmental, social, cultural, economic, and political issues
  • interdisciplinary collaboration

Undergraduate education requirements: 

Graduate education requirements: 

Career Opportunities

A degree in geography is useful for students wishing to pursue a postgraduate education as well as enter such careers as earth and environmental sciences, economic development, environmental management, international trade, transportation analysis and planning, diplomacy, government administration from local to federal levels, market analysis, urban and regional planning, research, teaching, cartography, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and private business. Other occupations include but are not limited to the following:

  • international area specialist
  • business site selection
  • cartographer
  • GIS analyst
  • environmental scientist
  • geoscientist
  • teacher
  • environmental planner
  • natural resource manager
  • geographer
  • geopolitical analyst
  • hydrologist
  • intelligence analyst
  • land use planner/analyst
  • marketing analyst
  • urban/regional planner
  • community developer
  • technical writer

For more information about career opportunities, contact the UK Stuckert Career Center.

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