Advising Information for Geography & GIS Students
Bachelor of Arts in Geography
Geographic Information Science (GIS) Emphasis
One of the fastest growing areas in geography is the use of geographic information sciences (GIS) to generate maps and store map-related information. GIS is a system of computer hardware and software that stores, displays, analyzes, and maps geographic information. Geographers, planners, land developers, real estate agents, market analysts, utility companies, and municipal officials all use these systems.
Community Development Emphasis
One of the traditional applied areas in geography is planning the built environment. Professionals in this field help communities decide how their land should be used, from the design and layout of a new school to the layout of commercial buildings to the location of a new light rail system, power grid, or park. This work requires both specialized knowledge as well as skills like Geographic Information Science (GIS). Because even the smallest plans can have big impacts, professionals in this field must also be able to work in a highly collaborative environment.
Field Studies Emphasis
Students in the Field Emphasis will have educational experiences that link their theoretical classroom knowledge to the application of real-world problems in transformative ways. This emphasis gives students the opportunity to develop competencies (critical thinking, quantitative and qualitative data analysis), forge community connections, and have tangible experiences that encourage a deeper understanding of today’s issues.
Regional Studies Emphasis
Geography is the study of the social, environmental and locational processes that create diversity from place to place on the earth's surface. The geographic perspective helps to explain the reasons for and the significance of local, regional and world patterns and analyzes the role of locational factors in human affairs. Regional geography critically examines the relationships that geographic phenomena have within different regions. Those electing the Regional Studies Emphasis learn to recognize spatial problems that impact regions. They develop the ability to critically analyze regional issues and acquire knowledge and skills that transferable to problem-solving across regions.
Secondary Teaching Emphasis
The Geography Secondary Teaching program participates in the preparation of teachers by offering a bachelor's degree in geography that meets all requirements for licensure for teaching social studies at the secondary level (grades 7-12). Upon successful completion of this program and the requirements of the Professional Teacher Education Program (PTEP), students will qualify to be licensed to teach social studies. Students choosing this major will be observed by experienced geography faculty when student teaching.
Students interested in teaching geography at the elementary level should enroll in the Elementary Education Bachelor's program and select the Social Studies track.