Human Geography BA (Hons)

Human Geography tackles many of the issues facing society today, including: globalisation and its impact on the everyday places we live and work; sustainability and human/nature relations; culture and identity; inequality and social justice. This degree provides opportunities to explore the world around you from a range of perspectives and think about the difference you can make. 

UCAS course code
8B12
Location
York St John University
Course fees
2017 - 2018: Home & EU students: £9,250 per annum, International (non EU) students: £10,000 per annum
Duration
3 years full-time | 6 years part-time
Study Abroad
Yes - see our study abroad web pages for more information
Start date
September 2017 | September 2018
Accredited by
Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)
School
Humanities, Religion & Philosophy

Course overview

The BA (Hons) Human Geography offers you a broad curriculum in human geography which enables you to appreciate the sheer vigour and excitement of the subject. The degree has a particular focus on urban geography, social geography, cultural geography and tourism geography. Key geographical themes such as landscape, place, spatial variation and inequality underpin the curriculum at all levels.

Fieldwork has long been essential for an education in geography and this degree is no exception. Field visits are embedded into the curriculum in all three years of study. They include day visits in the City of York and the wider region but also residential fieldwork which, in the first year takes place in the UK and by the third year is based in an overseas location.

Throughout the degree there is an emphasis on giving you the skills that will prepare you for future employment. These include ‘transferable’ skills (such as communication, problem-solving, decision-making, time management, working independently and in groups) but also subject specific skills (such as critically interpreting landscapes, analysing geographical data and carrying out a research project).

Royal Geographical Society Accreditation with IBGThis 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.

Dr Pauline Couper - Subject Director, Geography

Course structure

Level 1

The first year provides a broad overview of contemporary human geography which will be a springboard for more detailed study in Levels 2 and 3.

Modules may include:

  • Urban & Economic Geography
  • Mapping the Geographies of Yorkshire
  • Critical Thinking & Academic Skills in Geography
  • Social & Cultural Geography
  • Tourism Geographies
  • Human Geography Fieldwork Studies

Level 2

At Level 2 there is a more specific focus on social and cultural geography. In addition, there is also training in ‘doing’ research and all students will work in small groups on a research project of their choosing (under the guidance of a tutor) in a fieldwork destination (which may be in the UK or Europe). You also undertake a work placement with an appropriate employer.

Modules may include:

  • Space & Society
  • Culture & Landscape
  • Geographical Thought
  • Research Project
  • Geographers’ Professional Practice
  • Cultural & Heritage Tourism

Level 3

Level 3 is advanced study that will introduce you to ideas and debates that are at the ‘cutting edge’ of the discipline. There is a particular focus on urban geography and students can also choose from a range of optional modules. All students undertake a dissertation, an original piece of research on negotiated topic of their choice, done independently but under the guidance of a tutor. Finally the year ends with residential fieldwork in an international setting.

Modules may include:

  • Human Geography Dissertation
  • Nature/Culture
  • Cities in Transition
  • International/Cross-cultural Fieldwork
  • Media Geographies or Transnational Cinema or Responsible Tourism

Teaching & Assessment

For all of our geography degrees, our aim is to get you doing geography for yourself from the outset: collecting and analyzing data, applying theories for yourself, and developing your skills and abilities – generating your own knowledge. We use a range of teaching styles and settings to support you in this. This includes lectures and seminars (small groups of students with a tutor), tutorials (one-to-one meetings with a tutor), fieldwork, ICT workshops, independent study outside of formal teaching sessions, collaborative learning (working with your fellow students) and using online resources through the university’s Virtual Learning Environment. Teaching sessions include discussions, problem-solving exercises, group work, debates and data analysis exercises. Throughout your degree you are encouraged to take an active part in teaching sessions, rather than just being a passive receiver of information. Sometimes students are even asked to take the lead in sessions.

Assessment of this degree is entirely through coursework, with no exams. This is to ensure that the kinds of work you are doing through the degree reflect the kinds of work geographers undertake after graduation, in professional employment. You will experience a wide range of assessment methods, including essays, reports (including fieldwork reports), verbal presentations and portfolios (potentially with some multimedia elements in them) Many modules are assessed through one piece of coursework, with development of this work supported throughout the course of the module. Feedback on assignments is designed to support you in your future learning, at the same time as assessing what you have already learned.

By your final year, you will be ready to take control of your learning for yourself. The dissertation involves you undertaking an independent research project (guided by a tutor) on an environmental geography topic of your choice, demonstrating self-reliance and developing skills of project management. The fieldwork module in your final semester brings together all that you will have learned through your degree, giving you plenty of scope to demonstrate your knowledge, abilities and creativity.

Programme specification

Further information on this course is available in the programme specification. Please note that the programme specification relates to course content that is currently being studied by students at the University. For new programmes, the programme specification will be made available online prior to the start of the course.

Learning support

York St John University works hard to create an inclusive environment for all our students. We offer a range of learning support services to assist students throughout their studies.

Teaching & Assessment

For all of our geography degrees, our aim is to get you doing geography for yourself from the outset: collecting and analyzing data, applying theories for yourself, and developing your skills and abilities – generating your own knowledge.

Teaching methods

We use a range of teaching styles and settings to support you in this. This includes lectures and seminars (small groups of students with a tutor), tutorials (one-to-one meetings with a tutor), fieldwork, ICT workshops, independent study outside of formal teaching sessions, collaborative learning (working with your fellow students) and using online resources through the university’s Virtual Learning Environment. Teaching sessions include discussions, problem-solving exercises, group work, debates and data analysis exercises. Throughout your degree you are encouraged to take an active part in teaching sessions, rather than just being a passive receiver of information. Sometimes students are even asked to take the lead in sessions.

Assessment & Feedback

Assessment of this degree is entirely through coursework, with no exams. This is to ensure that the kinds of work you are doing through the degree reflect the kinds of work geographers undertake after graduation, in professional employment. You will encounter a wide range of assessment, including essays, reports (including fieldwork reports), verbal presentations and portfolios (potentially with some multimedia elements in them). Many modules are assessed through one piece of coursework, with development of this work supported throughout the course of the module. Feedback on assignments is designed to support you in your future learning, at the same time as assessing what you have already learned.

By your final year, you will be ready to take control of your learning for yourself. The dissertation involves you undertaking an independent research project (guided by a tutor) on a relevant topic of your choice, demonstrating self-reliance and developing skills of project management. The fieldwork module in your final semester brings together all that you will have learned through your degree, giving you plenty of scope to demonstrate your knowledge, abilities and creativity.

Entry requirements

Qualifications

The minimum entry requirements for this course are:

96-112 UCAS Tariff points

3 GCSEs at grade C or above (or equivalent) including English Language and Maths

For 2017 entry UCAS has altered how its tariff points are calculated. Calculate your tariff points.

Personal statement

Essential criteria

As well as a strong standard of written English, we also look for an interest and enthusiasm for the subject. For example you might have taken Geography at A Level or a related subject such as Environmental Studies, Leisure and Tourism, or Sociology. An interest in the fascinating diversity of people and places in the world is also essential and one way of demonstrating this is through travel – both within your own country and in other countries.

Valued criteria

Candidates can demonstrate a real enthusiasm for the subject that goes beyond achieving good grades in exams. Some examples might include reading Geographical Magazine, National Geographic or other popular geographical magazines, or attending workshops, seminars or guest lectures about contemporary geography. You may also have taken part in outdoor activities (for example through Scouts or Duke of Edinburgh) or have experience of taking part in (or helping out with) geography fieldwork. You may also engage with the Royal Geographical Society or the Geographical Association on Facebook or Twitter, or have ‘Young Geographer’ status with the Royal Geographical Society. Other examples include undertaking voluntary work that is related to human geography (such as environmental or heritage conservation, charity work or teaching) or undertaking a gap year or voluntary work in another country.

Terms and conditions

Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. These can be accessed through our Admissions webpages.

Fees and funding

To study for an undergraduate degree with us, you will need to pay tuition fees for your course. How much you pay will depend on whether you're a UK & EU student or an international (non-EU) student. Tuition fees are charged for each year of your course.

Tuition fees for 2018 / 19 entry have not yet been confirmed.

There may also be some additional costs to take into account throughout your studies, including the cost of accommodation.

Tuition fees

UK & EU 2016 / 17

The York St John University tuition fee for the 2017 entry to Foundation Degree, BA and BSc, PGCE Primary and Secondary and UG Health Programme degrees is £9,250 per year for UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

Tuition fees may be subject to inflation in future years.

Fees & Funding

Overseas 2016 / 17

The York St John University tuition fee for the 2017 entry to Foundation Degree, BA and BSc, PGCE degrees is £10,000 per year for international students.

Tuition fees may be subject to inflation in future years.

International Fees & Funding

Additional costs and financial support

Course-related costs

As part of this course, students will need:

  • A clipboard: estimated cost of £5.00
  • A waterproof jacket: estimated cost from £20.00 upwards.
  • Comfortable shoes
  • A camera: estimated cost from £30.00 upwards, however, mobile phone cameras are suitable.

Students may need to purchase a DBS Check (£44.00) if the student opts to complete their Year 2 placement in a school or similar setting. Students may also need to purchase a sleeping bag, depending on the arrangement for residential field trips.

There may be additional, optional costs such as purchasing personal equipment, text books, printing and photocopying.

Travel and accommodation costs for compulsory field visits are included in the tuition fees. This includes residential visits within the UK (Year 1) and overseas (Year 2 and Year 3). Students normally have to arrange some meals (e.g. lunches) themselves during residential field visits. For day trips, travel costs are included in the tuition fees and students are normally required to bring packed lunches.

Accommodation and living costs

View our accommodation webpages for detailed information on accommodation and living costs.

Study abroad

For more information on tuition fee reductions and additional costs for studying abroad, please visit our study abroad webpages.

Financial help and support

Help and advice on funding your studies at York St John is available through our Money Advice service. The Geography teaching team can provide further advice on purchasing clothing and equipment needed for this course.

International students

We welcome international students from all over the world at York St John University and have a vibrant international community. You can find out more on our International Pages about how you can study with us and what it’s like to live and learn in York, one of the UK’s most historic cities.

Ask a question

Do you have a question about this course? Fill out our form to send a question to our Admissions team. Alternatively, you can call us on 01904 876922.