facebook BSc (Hons) Geography – Bath Spa University

Geography

BSc (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single or combined honours

Key facts

Award
BSc (Hons) Geography
School
College of Liberal Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year. Part time available.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: F800 or F801
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. Typical offers include A-level grades CCC preferred with grade C in Geography, Sociology Economics or Science.

View "typical offers" for more information.

Tackle pressing local and global issues with a Bath Spa University Geography degree.

  • Accredited by the Royal Geographical Society, our Geography course prepares you to address the needs of the world beyond university.
  • Learn from a skilled team of lecturers with a wide range of expertise – from geomorphology to sustainability – and networks across the globe.
  • Experience how Geography plays a part in different cultures and environments through residential field trips both at home and abroad.

Geography is about places and people. This link between environmental processes and social behaviours means that the study of Geography is essential in understanding today’s pressing global and local issues – from climate change to sustainable development.

During your Bath Spa Geography degree, you’ll study specialisms such as poverty and development, sustainability, cultural identities and representation, river and coastal processes, and geotechnologies. You’ll mix fieldwork and data collection techniques with a further understanding of communities and environments.

You’ll develop your knowledge of a wide range of geographical concepts and theories, all while gaining skills that employers look for: communication, research, data management and analysis, problem solving and IT skills – specifically in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing. You'll also produce a video-clip and a personal website in your second year.

Find out more about Geography at Bath Spa on TwitterInstagram and YouTube.

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"...The extensive use of ArcGIS on the course greatly increased my employability, as all the major companies use this software - I use it daily in my job. My links to the Environment Agency were picked up in interviews as being of great benefit and provided a talking point."

Jennifer Drew, BSc (Hons) Geography
Geography Alumna, Jennifer Drew

Want to specialise?

You could study Geography alongside another subject as part of a combined course. We also offer specialist courses in:

Not sure which pathway is right for you? Read our blog post on choosing the right Geography degree.

What you'll learn

Overview

We take an integrated approach to Geography; you’ll gain an understanding of both the human and physical aspects of the subject. As your curiosity, abilities and career plans evolve, you can choose to specialise in the aspects of Geography – whether physical or human – that interest you.

The best Geography university courses are characterised by meaningful partnerships between students and staff. We’re a small, accessible team and we take the time to get to know you. Research – at the cutting edge of diverse topics such as global challenges, migration, identities and citizenship – underpins our teaching.

Our rural campus is in itself a natural laboratory that gives you the opportunity to use your growing skills, alongside state of the art equipment (GIS, satellite data and Geotechnologies), to investigate the world on your doorstep.

You’ll graduate with a range of skills that are highly valued by employers, from scientific techniques and computer skills to people skills such as communication, teamwork, independent research, data collection, fieldwork and critical thinking.

Course structure

Year one
In your first year, you’ll acquire foundational geographical knowledge, understanding and skills. You also get a taste of a variety of geographies, and benefit from plenty of fieldwork opportunities to local sites such as the Mendips, Somerset Levels and Bristol.

Topics of study include:

  • Contemporary geographical issues
  • Unfamiliar physical environments, different societies and cultures
  • Development and sustainability
  • How to use the technologies, methods, techniques and equipment that geographers need.

Year two
Start to specialise in your geographical interests. Greater emphasis is placed on research methods; you’ll learn a wide range of useful geographical techniques, both in the classroom and in fieldwork settings.

You apply your growing mastery of your subject to real-world problems and issues. The history of Geography forms a core part of the course, and we also give you the chance to engage with the Royal Geographical Society and other professional bodies as we help you begin to map out potential career paths.

Optional topics include:

  • Climate change
  • Geomorphology
  • River management
  • Environmental hazards
  • Exciting new geotechnologies
  • Urban geographies of global cities
  • Work placement
  • Field trip to India.

Year three
Continue to specialise. Develop your skills as an independent scholar by undertaking primary research that will enable you to demonstrate the theoretical and practical aspects of your geographical interests.

There’s a huge variety of topics to choose from for your dissertation, and throughout it, you’ll benefit from one-to-one tuition and expert guidance.

Optional topics include:

  • Climatology
  • Coastal management
  • Development and disasters
  • Identities and inequalities
  • Globalisation
  • Environmental justice
  • Advanced Geographical Fieldwork (trips to the Lake District or Barcelona)
  • Community engagement.

How will I be assessed?

You’ll experience a variety of different assessment methods throughout your Geography degree. These include essays, project reports, presentations, posters, video clips, fieldcraft assessments, reflective items and time-constrained tests and examinations. These will give you a rich and diverse skill set, designed to be of real benefit in pursuit of your career goals.

How will I be taught?

Good teaching is important to us; our graduates highly rate the quality of teaching on the course. In our friendly department you’ll benefit from small classes, specialist expertise and up-to-date technologies, including ArcGIS, GPS survey instruments, campus river gauging and digital ‘met’ stations.

Our rural site is a superb natural laboratory where you’ll learn a range of scientific techniques including field sampling and the use of laboratory instruments for sediment and water analysis. You’ll also learn social scientific techniques e.g. surveys and landscape interpretation.

Lectures, workshops and seminar-based teaching within small groups enables discussion about specific topics.

Course modules

This course offers or includes the following modules. The modules you take will depend on your pathway or course combination (if applicable) as well as any optional or open modules chosen. Please check the programme document (below the main image on this page) for more information.

Year one (Level 4) modules

  • Environment, People and Place
  • Geographical Skills
  • Applied Geographies
  • Global Development
  • Visualizing the 21st Century World
  • A case study of Catalonia: Education, Space and Society
  • Sustainability in Life and Work
  • The World in Ten Objects

Year two (Level 5) modules

  • Contested Geographies: Histories and Debates
  • Geographical Research Methods
  • Future Cities
  • Hazards, Vulnerability and Resilience
  • River and Coastal Systems
  • Climate and Society
  • Geographical Fieldwork
  • Geotechnologies for Society and Environment
  • Migration: Identity, Belonging, Citizenship and Security
  • Social Problems, Social Divisions, Social Justice
  • Crime, Law and Society
  • Environmental Management
  • Representing the American West
  • Work Placement
  • Professional Placement Year

Year three (Level 6) modules

  • Geography Dissertation Part 1
  • Geography Dissertation Part 2
  • Advanced Geographical Fieldwork
  • Identities and Inequalities
  • Climatology
  • Coastal and River Management
  • Environmental Change
  • Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Culture, Risk and Environmental Justice
  • Community Engagement
  • Work, Identities and Organisations

Opportunities

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world. Our students have completed Erasmus+ and Exchange programmes in a variety of countries including Australia, the Netherlands and the USA.

Field trips

We’re committed to giving you a relevant, interesting and useful degree; fieldwork is integral to this. There are various field days during modules, as well as residential fieldwork options in the UK and overseas in years two and three.

You’ll visit places and landscapes such as Mendip, the Somerset Levels, the Royal Geographical Society in London, and the Jurassic Coast of Dorset. Residential trips currently go to South Wales (year one), Northern India (year two) and Barcelona and the Lake District (final year specialist options). Please note that you’ll have to make a financial contribution towards all of these residential study visits.

Work placements, industry links and internships

There are opportunities to undertake work placements in your second year – this is an excellent way to gain experience in the workplace. Students have worked with local organisations such as Send a Cow, African Initiatives, Local Planning authorities, environmental organisations and the National Trust.

Guest speakers from industry contribute to the learning experience throughout the course. This engagement with potential employers will help you make those all-important career decisions when you graduate.

Competitions and awards

There are prizes awarded each year in recognition of excellence in the core modules. This culminates with the Geography Project of the Year Award for the best dissertation.

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for, and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

You'll be taught at our Newton Park campus, with access to a range of facilities including:

Resources

We have the latest technologies and learning resources. You’ll have access to IT laboratories with geographical software such as ArcGIS. In addition we have a comprehensive stock of field and laboratory equipment.

Other resources available include Leica Smart Rovers and Laser Scanner, handheld Global Positioning System devices, survey seismograph, Russian and standard sediment corers, teaching microscopes, stream flow meters, particle size analysis kits, digital Schmidt hammers, digital weather station, campus stream gauging station, digital dictaphones, digital video cameras, tablets and laptops.

"One of the most important elements of the course was the development of transferable skills that I now use on a daily basis and I think employers look for when reviewing candidates."

Matt Davies, BSc (Hons) Geography

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

UK and EU students part time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £4,625
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2022
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2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

International students full time

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,300
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

All students full time - with professional placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We’re looking for interested and motivated students who understand the importance of Geography on contemporary issues.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A-level – grades CCC preferred with grade C in Geography, Sociology Economics or Science
  • BTEC – Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) preferred in a related subject
  • International Baccalaureate – a minimum score of 26 points required
  • Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher).

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants

  • IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.

Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply pages.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Heather Winlow
Email: h.winlow@bathspa.ac.uk 

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk