Undergraduate Studies in Geography
Are you interested in: Cities and Urban Sustainability, Climate Change, Culture, Disasters and Natural Hazards, Ethno-National conflict, Geopolitics, GIS, Human-Environment Interaction, International Food, Migration, Military Strategy, Natural Resources, or Transportation? If your answer to any of these questions (and many related others) is “YES!” – then you need to consider majoring in GEOGRAPHY!
What is Geography?
Geography is a unique discipline through its seamless integration of the social sciences with the physical sciences. This integration is increasingly facilitated through advanced computer based tools to conduct geospatial techniques.
There is always something new to research in geography: new nation-states are created, natural disasters strike populated areas, climate change creates new trade routes and resource conflicts, people migrate and effect rapid urban change, and the Internet brings millions of people closer together. Identifying places on maps is important but geography takes us far beyond place names – geographic analysis allows us to understand the rapidly changing world in which we live.
Human & Physical Paths in Geography
The work of physical geographers includes research about climates, the formation of landforms, and the evolving impact of plant and animal species change. Migration, religion, languages, and cities are a few of the specialties of human geographers. Their research into the intricacies of human existence is fundamental to our understanding of cultures.
Geographers use many tools and techniques in their work, and geographic technologies are increasingly among the most important emerging fields for understanding our complex world. They include Geographic Information Systems (GIS) which is a computerized mapping and data analysis, Remote Sensing, Global Positioning Systems (GPS), online mapping such as Google Earth, and others. These types of technologies allow Geographers plan new communities, decide where new highways should be placed, and establish evacuation plans.
Careers as a Geographer
Earning your B.A. degree in geography shows prospective employers that you can solve problems, research solutions, and utilize emergent and changing technologies. You will have the ability to understand the spatial and integrative dimensions and the holistic perspective to a wide variety of the world’s most pressing challenges. At GW, we challenge students to move beyond passive knowledge consumption toward the production and contribution of NEW knowledge. GW Geography majors apply their skills and perspectives through collaborative work with faculty, fellow students and members of the Washington D.C. metropolitan community and beyond.
The Geography major can provide preparation for a career in business, industry, or government. Geographers with bachelor's degrees are currently being placed in federal, state, and local administrative and planning agencies and in private firms that specialize in planning and development or in environmental and socioeconomic analysis and a wide variety of other positions.
The Geography Department offers two majors and two minors:
Geography Credit for a Transfer or Study Abroad Course
Students seeking GW Geography transfer credits from U.S. College/University Geography Departments:
Please contact the appropriate advisor (based on the first letter of your last name – see below). Provide a complete syllabus to the adviser. Provide the semester and year you took the class. Inform the adviser of the GW Geography credit you hope to have assigned to the transfer course. Understand that it is the decision of the Geography Adviser what (if any) GW Geography credit will be assigned to the course. Please allow a minimum of 3 weeks for the Geography Adviser to review and act on your transfer request. In addition to a complete syllabus, provide a GWU Undergraduate Transfer Credit Approval form (available from the Website of the GW Office of the Registrar) with your appropriate sections completed.
Students seeking GWU Geography Credit for courses TAKEN ABROAD/STUDY ABROAD:
Please contact the appropriate advisor (based on the first letter of your last name see below). Provide a complete syllabus to the adviser. Provide the semester and year in which you took the class, the department in which it was taken, and the country of study. Inform the adviser of the GW Geography credit you hope to have assigned to the transfer course. Understand that it is the decision of the Geography Adviser what (if any) GW Geography credit will be assigned to the course. Please allow a minimum of 3 weeks for the Geography Adviser to review and act on your transfer request. In addition to a complete syllabus, provide a GWU Study Abroad Course Approval Request Form (available from the Website of the GWU Office for Study Abroad) with your appropriate sections completed.
Environmental Studies students seeing transfer or study abroad credit please contact one fo the EVST Program Advisors below:
To register as a geography major or minor, please contact the Geography Department Undergraduate Advisors to discuss your options, and fill out the required paper work.
Students whose last names begin with A-L
Professor Ryan Engstrom at 202-994-7979, firstname.lastname@example.org
Students whose last names begin with M-Z
Professor Joseph Dymond at 202-994-8503, email@example.com
EVST Program Advisors
Or, Visit the Geography Department, located in Old Main, 1922 F Street, N.W.