Geography BSc

Overview
Learning
Assessment
Careers
Entry Requirements

Overview

Why study Geography at University Centre Shrewsbury?

Geographical enquiry provides distinctive insights into both the natural processes that shape our physical landscape, and the social, economic, cultural and political forces that mould the societies in which we live. Modern geographers use a combination of traditional and modern data collection and analysis methods. This ensures that the geographer’s knowledge and skills continue to be relevant to today’s employers.

 

Features:                                

There is a particular emphasis on blending human and physical geography to explore contemporary people-environment; challenges such as sustainability, hazards and resilience; plus issues of identity and economic development in borderland regions like the Marches (England-Wales border). Training in human and physical applications of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) is integral to the degree programme.

 

Learning

Programme Structure:

The modules given below are the latest example of the curriculum available on this degree programme. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to change from time to time for reasons which include curriculum enhancement, staff changes, student numbers, improvements in technology, changes to placements or regulatory or external body requirements.

Year 1 (Level 4):

You will study introductory modules in human geography, physical geography and sustainability, plus a core module that introduces you to learning in Higher Education; this develops your field and laboratory skills, and includes residential fieldwork. You also take a discussion-based Tutorials module in which the group size is less than 10 students per tutor, and a module that explores landscape, place, identity and development challenges in border regions.

Year 2 (Level 5):

You will develop your studies in Applied Geographies (human and physical), and acquire advanced field and laboratory skills in geography and Geographical Information Systems (GIS), before designing your own research project. Towards the end of Year 2 you complete a four-to-six-week work or experiential learning placement. This provides the opportunity to make use of our well-established employer links with a range of organisations and businesses locally and within the region. Alternatively, we currently offer optional experiential learning fieldwork opportunities in Spain (physical geography) and New York (human geography).

Year 3 (Level 6):

You will complete a Dissertation and up to four taught modules from a range of options that currently embrace themes in: climate and environmental change, sustainability, remote sensing and GIS, geohazards and conservation, urban and rural geography, migration, refugees and asylum, housing and regeneration.

 

How will I be taught?

You will learn through a variety of methods including lectures, practicals, seminars, tutorials, group projects and online digital resources (e-learning), as well as one-to-one work with tutors for your dissertation and tutorials.

In Year 1, you will have approximately 12 hours timetabled contact hours per week, plus individual tutorial support and fieldwork. The timetabled contact hours reduce in Years 2 and 3 as the volume of self-directed study increases to respond to the delivery and content of the course and to make time in Year 3 for a dissertation.

 

Assessment

Assessment is through examination and coursework. Coursework assignments range from podcasting, oral presentations, posters and briefing papers to laboratory/field reports and essays. Approximately 60-65% of the assessment in Year 1 is through coursework, by Year 3 it increases to 75-80% assessment through coursework.

Careers

Recent national surveys (e.g. www.hecsu.ac.uk) show that Geography graduates have been finding it easier to find meaningful employment than graduates of many other university disciplines. This is because the knowledge and transferable skills acquired in studying Geography have broad vocational relevance. In particular, field and laboratory based geographical enquiry provide excellent opportunities to develop key transferable skills and specialist understanding, and to build confidence in problem-solving abilities as well as team-working, leadership and negotiation skills. Fieldwork at UCS makes full use of the local environment and the distinctive opportunities for field- and work-based learning provided by organisations situated close to Shrewsbury, such as the Centre for Alternative Technology (Machynlleth) and the Field Studies Council.

The distinctive learning opportunities available to geographers at Shrewsbury provide an excellent basis from which to progress to careers working in sustainability (in community and business contexts), local government, planning, transport, environment, regional development, management, administration and teaching.

Entry Requirements

UCAS points

A minimum of 112 UCAS points from GCE A Levels or equivalent, including one of the following subjects Geography, Geology, Environmental Science or Environmental Studies

BTEC

BTEC Extended Diploma/BTEC Diploma Applied Science (Environmental)

Irish/Scottish

BBBB including Geography

International Baccalaureate

26 points, including 5 or above in HL Geography

QAA

Access to HE Diploma (must include Geography or Environmental Science at Level 3), to include 45 credits at Level 3, 30 of which must be at Merit

OCR

OCR National Extended/Diploma: merit profile plus one of the GCE A Level subjects listed above

Extra Information

A Level General Studies accepted; Welsh Baccalaureate accepted alongside A Levels/BTEC/OCRs

Course content enquiries

Dr Fiona Williams

Programme Leader

  • Email: Fiona.williams@chester.ac.uk
  • Telephone: 01244 513180 / 01743 297188