Geography

Geography is the study of the environments created on the earth's surface by nature and people. The physical and biological elements of these environments, as well as their economic and social structure, historical development, spatial organization, interrelationships, management and planning, form the subject matter of geography.

Geography examines the spatial and temporal patterns of natural and human phenomena.  A number of different programs of study are available to you as a geography undergraduate student.

 

  • Environmental Geography: What are the social, spatial and economic factors shaping the relationship between humans and the environment?
  • Human Geography: How do people use and experience the environments they live in?  What are the interrelationships between landscapes, places, people and nature?   
  • Asian Geographies – National University of Singapore: This program represents a unique opportunity to study geography in a different cultural environment.  For more information, contact the Undergraduate Office and the Centre for International Experience.
  • Physical and Environmental Geography: How do physical, chemical and biological processes shape the earth's surface?
  • Geographic Information Systems:  How is spatial data organized, manipulated and mapped to answer specific geographic questions?

 

 

Admission Information

  • Honours Bachelor of Arts Programs
    • Apply to either the Social Sciences admission category on the St. George campus
    • Six Grade 12 U or M courses, including English are required
    • Students outside of Ontario should have the equivalent senior high school credits
  • Honours Bachelor of Science Programs
    • Apply to the Life Sciences admission category on the St. George campus
    • Six Grade 12 U or M courses, including English and Calculus and Vectors are required
    • Senior high school Chemistry is required for first-year courses
    • Senior high school Physics is required for Physical and Environmental Geography and recommended or Environment and Energy
    • Biology is required for Physical and Environmental Geography
    • Students outside of Ontario should have the equivalent senior high school credits

 

Honours Bachelor of Arts Programs

  • Human Geography (specialist, major and minor options)
  • Environmental Geography (specialist, major and minor options)
  • Geographic Information Systems (minor)
  • Asian Geographies (minor program offered jointly with the National University of Singapore)

Honours Bachelor of Science Programs

  • Physical and Environmental Geography (specialist, major and minor options)
  • Environment and Energy (minor)

 

First-Year Course

  • GGR 100H1 - Introduction to Physical Geography
  • GGR 101H1 - Ancient Civilizations and their Environments
  • GGR 107H1 - Environment, Food and People
  • GGR 112H1 - Geographies of Globalization, Development, and Inequality
  • GGR 124H1 - Urbanization, Contemporary Cities and Urban Life

 

Advice for First Year

Students who are interested in enrolling in the human or environmental geography programs should take two of the five first-year courses listed above. These courses are recommended for many other courses in the department. Each provides students with an introduction to geography and has a different emphasis.

Students who are interested in studying physical geography should take GGR 100H1. Varying combinations of science and math courses are also required for geography programs leading to a science degree. Students will be required to take first-year courses in one or more of the following areas, depending on the program they wish to pursue: mathematics, physics, chemistry and biology.

  

Careers

Because of their broadly based training, geographers are flexible and resourceful problem solvers who can complete a wide range of assignments.

In Canada, they are employed in the natural resource, environment, and transport sectors of federal and provincial governments, as teachers in universities and schools, and as consultants in private business. They work in local government in planning offices, parks and recreation departments and with watershed conservation authorities.

In the private sector, they use their skills in primary industry, manufacturing, transportation and communication, urban development, cartographic presentation, marketing and in research and development.

Recently, geographers have become specialists in building geographic information systems that use computers to handle the many types of data that are needed to investigate management and development issues. 

 

Direct career options include:

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Analysis Market Research
Environmental Management
Public Policy
Community Services
Teaching Geography and Environment
Land Use Planning
Cartography
Non-profit Organizations
Urban Planning
Transportation

Geography is also a gateway to other fields at the graduate level such as urban planning, public health, information management, law, social work, architecture and urban design.

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