Geography BSc (Hons)

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code:

    BSc: F800
    BSc with Foundation:
    F801

  • Level:

    Undergraduate

  • Duration:

    Full Time: 3 years
    Full Time Foundation: 4 years
    Part Time: 4 years

  • Starting:

    September

  • Fees UK 22/23:

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,500 (per 20 credits)
    Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250

  • Fees International 22/23:

    Full Time: £14,000
    Integrated Foundation Year: £14,000

  • Location:

    Waterside

Get in touch


For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries

study@northampton.ac.uk
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries

international@northampton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1604 893981

Overview


What physical and human factors impact on our environment? How are they being addressed at local, national and international levels? How can we influence change?

Our Geography BSc (Hons) programme explores these questions, using small group teaching and one-to-one tutorials to ensure students get individual support from our team of enthusiastic, experienced and research-active academic staff.

Updated 12/08/2022

Highlights


  • Small class sizes, enabling us to provide high levels of individual support.
  • Employability and career planning support incorporated into the curriculum.
  • Accredited by Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).
  • Fieldwork and visits, including optional international fieldtrip
  • HP laptop and software included with this course for eligible students (see Eligibility criteria and Terms and Conditions)
  • Guaranteed paid internship with the Northampton Employment Promise.

Take a look around our Waterside campus


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Fieldwork and Career support

Fieldwork is key to understanding geographical issues and developing transferable skills. Our students conduct fieldwork at all stages of the programme. This might involve visits to sites of geographical interest, individual or group projects, or optional international fieldtrips. Locations of optional fieldtrips in previous years have included the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas and Barcelona. We fund the travel and accommodation costs of compulsory study trips. There are additional fees for optional trips.

Our students have opportunities to network with employers and our own graduates through events on campus, online, and through our dedicated social networking site. This provides our students with insights into the wide range of careers Geography graduates enter. In addition, students take part in a number of career planning workshops and take a dedicated employability module.

 

Course Content


  • This course has been designed to contribute towards achieving the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals:

    SDG7: Affordable and Clean Energy and SDG13: Climate Action, SDG11: Sustainable Cities and Communities and SDG15: Life on Land

    Our Geography BSc (Hons) degree includes a mix of human geography and physical geography modules. Topics may include social and economic inequalities, climate change, migration, sustainable development, weather, water resource management, geographies of sport. There is a choice of modules at Stages 2 and 3.

    Stage 1

    There are six compulsory modules at Stage 1, ensuring students have a solid foundation in key aspects of the subject:

    Introducing Human Geographies. Provides an introduction to key geographical issues such as place, scale and social relations, drawing upon examples from migration, tourism and social geography.

    The Physical Environment. Outlines the principal processes operating at the surface of the Earth.

    A Sustainable Community. Introduces the goals of sustainable development and how they can be addressed at local scales.

    Geohazards. Explores the main causes of and responses to a broad range of natural hazards.

    Geography and Development. Considers social and economic inequalities at regional, national and international scales.

    Geographical Techniques. Introduces methods of data collection and analysis used in geographical research.

    Stage 2

    There are three compulsory modules at Stage 2:

    Geography Field Module. Develops field skills in both human geography and physical geography.

    Issues in Human Geography. Provides insights into contemporary issues within the UK and Europe, with a focus on social inequalities, deprivation, and changing urban spaces.

    Research Methods. Develops skills essential for the presentation, analysis and interpretation of data.

    In addition, you choose three from the following modules:

    • Weather and Climate.
    • Populations and Migrations.
    • Landscape Processes.
    • Biogeography.
    • Transport and Mobility.
    Stage 3

    There are two compulsory modules:

    Geography Dissertation. An opportunity to undertake a personal study of a geographical topic you want to investigate.

    Career Planning and Employability. Develops awareness of jobs you can do with a Geography degree, recruitment processes, and your own subject-specific and transferable skills.

    You choose three of the following modules:

    • Communicating Climate Change.
    • Geographies of Sport.
    • Water Resource Management.
    • Children’s Geographies.
    • Sustainable Development: Land Use and Planning.

    Please note the modules shown here relate to the academic year 22/23. The modules relating to the academic year 23/24 will be available from June 2023.

      • Module code: GEO1006
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is to introduce key concepts within human geography - based around the themesof people, place and movement - providing a basis for more specialised modules at levels 5 and 6. In addition it explores how human geography has changed over time and includes fieldwork.
      • Module code: GEO1010
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is to introduce students to the study of the geography of development. Students will gain an understanding of theories of development, identify key social inequalities, and explore a range of case studies. The module provides a grounding in key issues that provide a context to further study on development issues incorporated into modules at Levels 5 and 6.
      • Module code: GEO1013
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is to provide an introduction to a range of data collection and analysis methods used in geographical research. Training on the use of Geographical Informatation Systems is also provided. Students undertake two projects, enabling them to learn about, use, and evaluate some key research techniques.
      • Module code: GEO1107
        Status: Compulsory
        The Physical Environment provides an introduction tothe physical environment of Planet Earth. Students will examine processes which operate in the atmosphere, like the development of clouds and tainfall, those that occur at the Earth's surface, such as weathering and erosion and how, combined with geology and tectonics how these processes interact to produce environments and landscapes.
      • Module code: GEO1108
        Status: Compulsory
        This module provides an overview of the main causes of and responses to a broad range of natural hazards, introduces the key principles, concepts and terminology associated with the analysis of hazard and risk from geophysical events and explains the nature of a range of geohazards using recent case studies.
      • Module code: GEO1110
        Status: Compulsory
        Investigating sustainbillity requires exploring the complex interaction between the economy, society, the environment and politics. Framed by the UN Sustainable Development Goals this module explores key issues at a local, national and international scale through research, debate, discussion and project work.
      • Module code: ENV2103
        Status: Designate
        Biogeography combines ecology and geography to help us understand global patterns of biodiversity. `It is the study of distributions of organisms, habitats and biomes, both past and present, and of related patterns of variation over the earth in the numbers and kinds of living things' (Brown & Lomolino, 1998).
      • Module code: GEO2028
        Status: Compulsory
        This module introduces research about a range of contemporary geographical issues in diverse contexts in the UK and Global North. Issues to be explored may include deprivation, social exclusion and changing urban spaces. The module includes UK-based fieldwork.
      • Module code: GEO2030
        Status: Designate
        Effective Transport and Mobility is essential for the operation of all economic sectors and a society with equality of opportunity. Well managed transport systems with good infrastructure aim to avoid negative externalities related to health, the environment and lack of accessibility. In this module we explore the critical historical, geographical, economic and political importnace of transport at a number of scales. There is currently a technologically driven mobility revolution that is not without tension and conflict. In this module students will critically evaluate the requirements of transport in the twenty first century.
      • Module code: GEO2032
        Status: Designate
        The purpose of this module is to provide an introduction to population studies and provide a specific focus on the study of migration. The movement of people will be studied and examples of human migration will include local, national and international case studies.
      • Module code: GEO2037
        Status: Designate
        The purpose of this module is to equip students with the skills and knowledge necessary for the scientific study of processes, landforms, and deposits, an awareness of how the discipline has developed and an understanding of how geomorphological concepts may be applied to assist in the solution of environmental problems.
      • Module code: GEO2038
        Status: Compulsory
        This module will help you develops skills essential for the presentation, analysis, and interpretation of data. Students will learn statistical analysis and evaluation of results. Spatial and historical data will be mapped in the application of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to query contemporary global to local issues.
      • Module code: GEO2104
        Status: Compulsory
        This module develops field skills by examining aspects of both physical and human geography. The module is taught in a detailed lecture and seminar programme and in a field visit.
      • Module code: GEO2111
        Status: Designate
        Weather and Climate explores the fundamental processes occurin in the atmospher. We examine the flow of energy, principles of cloud formation and rainfall, the importance of air movement and the development of weather systems such as storms. The module explains why weather and climate varies in time and in space at a number of geographical scales.
      • Module code: ENV3013
        Status: Designate
        This module explores social, economic and environmental issues associated with land use. Ethical consumerism will be linked to contemporary land use. Techniques for the evaluation of landscapes (including GIS) will be introduced and the effectiveness of policies and legislation that aim to facilitate sustainable development will be critically evaluated and discussed.
      • Module code: GEO3007
        Status: Designate
        The purpose of this module is to provide an opportunity to critically investigate difference and diversity in the geographical worlds of children and young people. Students will explore a range of case studies from the Global North and Global South, review key concepts, and carry out a mini research project.
      • Module code: GEO3031
        Status: Designate
        The purpose of this module is to explore geographical approaches to studying recreational and professional sport at a range of spatial scales. Drawing on a wide range of contemporary and historical sports case studies this module will explore issues including globalization, migration, the body and global mega-events.
      • Module code: GEO3108
        Status: Designate
        Climate change is regarded as the greatest environmental problem. It is a complex scientific topic that can affect all aspects of environmental and human systems. It is essential that debate and policy is driven by informed specialists and not by the media or political agenda. In this module we explore all aspects of the climate change issue.
      • Module code: GEO3124
        Status: Designate
        The purpose of this module is to enhance students? employability through the development of key employability skills. Students participate in career planning activities and reflect on their experiences.
      • Module code: GEO3131
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is to enhance students employability. Students learn about the career opportunities available to Geography graduates, participate in application and interview role-play activities, and reflect on their graduate-level skills and work experience. The module also provides opportunities for students to network with alumni and employers.
      • Module code: GEO4008
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is for the student to plan, undertake, report and evaluate an original piece of geographical research. Students choose a geographical topic of personal interest to investigate in depth. Through this the student acquires and develops their subject-specific, analytical, project management and communication skills.
  • Standard entry requirements apply. A typical offer would be BCC at A-Level or DMM at BTEC. We welcome international applicants and applications from students with a range of non-traditional educational or professional qualifications.

    For more more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    If you are an International student and would like information on making an application, please see our How to Apply page.

    Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) Entry Requirements

    Admission to this foundation programme is normally DEE at A Level or MPP at BTEC. However, we would also like to hear from you if you have professional or industry experience instead, a range of other qualifications or self-developed subject knowledge that relates to the programme you wish to study.

     

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

  • 22/23 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 22/23 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

      • UK Full Time: £9,250
      • UK Part Time: £1,500 per 20 credit module
      • UK Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250 for the foundation year; thereafter standard fees apply
      • International Full Time: £14,000
      • International Integrated Foundation Year: £14,000 for the foundation year; thereafter standard fees apply
    Additional Costs

    This course includes residential and day fieldwork trips within the UK. These opportunities help you to develop your skills and also visit sites that may be restricted for the general public.

    As well as local area visits, there may be opportunities for overseas fieldwork.

    There is no charge for compulsory field visits within the UK, however the optional overseas trip would incur an additional to be confirmed by your tutor.

    21/22 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 21/22 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

      • UK Full Time: £9,250
      • UK Part Time: £1,465 per 20 credit module
      • UK Integrated Foundation Year: £9,250 for the foundation year; thereafter standard fees apply
      • International Full Time: £13,000
      • International Integrated Foundation Year: £13,000 for the foundation year; thereafter standard fees apply
    Additional Costs

    This course includes residential and day fieldwork trips within the UK. These opportunities help you to develop your skills and also visit sites that may be restricted for the general public.

    As well as local area visits, there may be opportunities for overseas fieldwork.

    There is no charge for compulsory field visits within the UK, however the optional overseas trip would incur an additional to be confirmed by your tutor.

    For information on the scholarships available to you, please see our scholarships page.

  • This programme has been accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG). Accredited degree programmes contain a solid academic foundation in geographical knowledge and skills, and prepare graduates to address the needs of the world beyond higher education. The accreditation criteria require evidence that graduates from accredited programmes meet defined sets of learning outcomes, including subject knowledge, technical ability and transferable skills.

    RSB Accredited Programme logo- Blue

  • At the University of Northampton, everything we do, from funded trips to paid internships, is to give you everything you need to make a difference when you leave.

    If you join this full time Geography degree at Northampton, you will receive a laptop when your course begins. The laptops are built to a bespoke custom specification ideal for use in the seminar room, collaborative group work or studying at home.

    Whatever your ambitions, we’re here to help you to achieve them. We’ll support you to identify the skills you’re learning during your course, find your strengths and secure practical experience so that when it comes to applying for jobs or further study you’ll feel confident in standing out from the crowd. We’ve created the Northampton Employment Promise because we are so confident that if you focus on your studies and complete one of our awards you’ll be highly employable by the time you graduate. Putting you in a great position to secure employment or continue your studies.

    To check out the full list of perks, visit our Student Perks page.

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Featuring a reduced tuition fee in the first year, our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • The Geography department are taking part in GeoNight 2022, with an activity about geography, sport and climate change; this features issues and case studies studied in our Geographies of Sport final year undergraduate module.

  • How will I be taught?

    Face-to-face sessions are organised as interactive classes with discussion and activities. For some modules, there are workshops in the laboratory or computer room. Classes are supported by online and technology-enhanced learning to ensure you have the best possible study experience to achieve your potential.

    How many hours per week of teaching/personal tutoring?

    Students typically have 12 hours contact time per week, in addition to 20-25 hours per week of independent study. Students are encouraged to meet with staff on a one-to-one basis to get additional study support, and also receive timetabled personal tutor meetings each term.

    How will I be assessed?

    Each module generally has two items of assessment. Assignments are designed to develop your skills, as well as test your knowledge and understanding. There is a range of written assignments, including reports and essays. You may also be asked to analyse data or reflect on your learning. In some written assignments you will be tasked with writing in a style appropriate to a particular audience. Presentations, debates and discussions are used to assess your verbal communication skills. There are no formal examinations, but there are a small number of class-based tests. A detailed set of instructions is provided for every assignment. Students are encouraged to meet with academic staff to get one-to-one support.

    What careers can I go into from studying this course?

    The Geography BSc (Hons) programme equips students with a broad knowledge base and a wide range of skills that are attractive for many careers requiring graduate skills. Our graduates gain employment in range of sectors such as planning, environment, transport, education, energy, insurance, and local government. Opportunities to network with graduates are incorporated into the programme.

    Are there any study trips?

    Fieldwork is key to understanding geographical issues and developing transferable skills. Many of our modules include part- or full-day field trips. Typical locations include London and the Midlands. In addition, we often conduct fieldwork on and around campus. There are UK residential trips at Stage 2. Recent trips have included five days in Devon studying physical geography techniques and topics, and two days in Sheffield exploring urban geographies. There may be optional overseas trips. Locations in previous years include Barcelona, Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon. We fund travel and accommodation costs on compulsory study trips. There are additional fees for optional trips.

Upcoming Open Days

Open Days give you the best experience and insight to courses, people and facilities that interest you. Make your choice easier and come meet us.

Staff


Careers and Employability


We offer an innovative approach to enhancing your employability. Career planning workshops take place in all years of study. In addition, there is a career planning module, which focuses on developing your awareness of jobs you can do with a Geography degree, recruitment processes, and your own subject-specific and transferable skills. We work closely with careers advisers to ensure students get one-to-one career guidance and support.

Guest speakers from a range of businesses and organisations – including lots of our own Geography graduates – contribute to the curriculum. This gives students ‘real-world’ insights into current issues, provides up-to-date information about the workplace, and gives opportunities for networking with potential employers.

Our graduates gain employment in a wide range of sectors such as planning, environment, transport, education, energy, insurance, and local government.

Examples of the roles secured by recent graduates include:

  • Flood and Coastal Risk Management Officer;
  • Sustainability Projects Officer;
  • Net-Zero Data Analyst;
  • Graduate Transport Planner;
  • Geography Teacher;
  • Trainee Land Surveyor;
  • Planning Officer;
  • Community Protection Officer;
  • Graduate Project Officer;
  • GIS Technician;
  • Researcher.

Graduate Success

Tyler credits his university grounding for helping him to complete his day to day work duties.

Facilities


Field survey equipment

You will learn to use a wide range of field survey equipment on the programme, mapping changes to our dynamic environment. We will provide you opportunities to use specialist equipment that you may use in your future career. This includes survey-grade Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) for precision topographic surveying and a Terrestrial Laser Scanner (TLS) for 3D imaging.

Specialist IT provision and software

You will have access to a range of modern and well-equipped IT laboratories across the Waterside campus. As part of your studies you will also get an ESRI ArcGIS software license to use at home. This will help you develop highly desirable digital skills using an industry-standard Geographic Information System (GIS) for mapping and spatial analysis. As part of your studies, we will also provide you with access to historical and contemporary Ordnance Survey mapping data via the Edina Digimap service.

Specialist laboratories

You will have access to our Geographical and Environmental Sciences laboratory, allowing you to work on projects alongside our team of active internationally-recognised researchers. Our laboratories are well equipped and include a laser granulometer and gamma-ray spectrometer that you can use for environmental surveys and assessments.