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Keele University Geography Dissertation

Geography 

(2018 Entry)

BA (Hons) or BSc (Hons)

Geography is uniquely positioned between the physical and social sciences enabling geographers to provide broad-ranging perspectives on a range of key societal challenges. The course has consistently received very high levels of student satisfaction in recent National Student Surveys with Keele now ranking in the Top 10 for Geography in the Guardian 2017 University Guide.

Study abroad

Learn a language

International year

3 years/ 4 years with international year

Access to this course available through a Foundation Year

Course Overview

In our Geography course at Keele, you will develop a core foundation in the first year from which you will have the flexibility to pursue a diverse range of specialisms and interests in the second and third years, allowing you to explore your interests within the subject. You'll learn to access and engage with the latest research in which the majority of our staff are engaged; undertake effective fieldwork; utilise a range of methods to collect and analyse qualitative data; plan and undertake research; and use specialist software such as GIS to address geographical problems.

We offer a range of local field excursions, which for many students are the highlight of their learning experience. Our campus provides an ideal venue for some of our work, whilst field courses run locally and overseas provide an opportunity to broaden your horizons. We provide field course routes that incur no additional costs with only some optional trips involving additional charges. You will also have access to excellent computing and laboratory facilities, and the chance to study abroad at a partner institution, either for a semester or an entire international year

What will this mean for my future?

As a geographer, you'll develop a wide range of transferable and subject- specific skills that are highly valued by employers. Your interdisciplinary perspectives, problem-solving skills and the ability to research, evaluate and synthesise information from diverse sources are relevant to a broad range of careers including those in transport and planning and the environmental and retail sectors. They also provide an ideal training for postgraduate study and research.

This programme has been accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).

Indicative modules

First Year

  • Geography and Geographers*
  • Human Geographies
  • People and the Environment
  • Geographical Skills
  • Fundamentals of Physical Geography
  • The Practice of Physical Geography

Second Year

  • Dynamic Geographies
  • Practical Human Geography
  • Space and Society
  • Practical Physical Geography
  • Work Placement*
  • Regional Landsystems
  • Concepts and Debates in Geography*

Third Year

  • Dissertation
  • Natural Hazards
  • Water Resources
  • Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology
  • Global Environmental Change
  • Coastal Environments
  • Economic Development and Environmental Transformation
  • Geographies of Children and Youth

*Single Honours Geography Only

Course structure

Our degree courses are organised into modules. Each module is usually a self-contained unit of study and each is usually assessed separately with the award of credits on the basis of 1 credit = 10 hours of student effort.  An outline of the structure of the programme is provided in the tables below.

There are three types of module delivered as part of this programme. They are:

  • Compulsory modules – a module that you are required to study on this course;
  • Optional modules – these allow you some limited choice of what to study from a list of modules;
  • Elective modules – a free choice of modules that count towards the overall credit requirement but not the number of subject-related credits.

Modules Summary

Geography -  Single Honours programme is modular in structure. The programme provides a broad-based first year followed by more specialised second year and third-year studies.

We assume no prior expertise in Geography, and begin with introductory modules that provide a platform from which students can develop their knowledge, understanding and skills.  First year is an introductory year in which students acquire essential academic skills and a foundation of knowledge of the underlying concepts and principles of the subject. Second year develops a critical understanding of more advanced topics and conceptual issues in the subject, and helps students to establish skills in independent research. Third year allows students to explore specialised topics of their choice at the level of the most recent scientific research, and to develop a range of advanced skills.

A summary of the credit requirements per year is as follows, with a minimum of 90 subject credits (compulsory plus optional) required for each year.

Year

Compulsory

Optional

Electives

Min

Max

Min

Max

1

75

15

45

0

30

2

75

15

45

0

30

3

0

90

120

0

30

Modules - Year One

Year 1 (Level 4)

Compulsory Core modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Geographical Skills

15

The Practice of Physical Geography

15

Fundamentals of Physical Geography

15

Practising Human Geography

15

Geography & Geographers

15

Global Warming or a New Ice Age?

15

Human Geographies

15

Greening Business

15

People and the Environment

15

Entrepreneurship Level 4

15

 

Modules - Year Two

Year 2 (Level 5)

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Practical Physical Geography

15

Regional Landsystems

15

Dynamic Geographies

30

Space & Society

15

Regional Landsystems

15

Work Placement Module

15

Geographical Research Training

15

Concepts & Debates in Geography

15

  

Entrepreneurship Level 5

15

Modules - Year Three

Year 3 (Level 6)

In the third year, you must obtain a minimum of 90 credits from option modules (options must include either 15 or 30 credit Dissertation Independent Study Project (ISP) module). You may choose all 120 credits from option modules including one dissertation ISP.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

None

 

Double Dissertation ISP

30

  

OR

 
  

Single Dissertation ISP

15

  

PLUS

 
  

Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology

15

  

Natural Hazards

15

  

Global Environmental Change

15

  

Water Resources

15

  

Coastal Environments

15

  

Applied GIS

15

  

Inspirational Landscapes

15

  

Postcolonialism in South Asia

15

  

Economic Development & Environmental Transformation

15

  

Geographies of Children & Youth

15

  

Rural Geographies

15

  

Trees in their Environment

15

  

Environment & Sustainability Case Study

15

 

For further information on the content of modules currently offered, including the list of elective modules, please visit: www.keele.ac.uk/recordsandexams/az






Download Course Information Document (PDF)




Geology and Physical Geography 

(2018 Entry)

BSc (Hons)

This popular combination focuses on the physical structure of the Earth, the processes that shape its surface and interior, and the importance of these to human activity.

Combined Honours degrees allow you to study two different subjects in one degree. Find out more about Combined Honours degrees.


Study abroad

Learn a language

International year

3 years/ 4 years with international year

Course Overview

The course includes a balance of physical geography and geology topics, as well as material from complementary disciplines such as geophysics, meteorology, geomorphology, and environmental science. You will learn about the history of the Earth, its past and present environments, and the planet’s resources and hazards. We look at the Earth as a global system, including the causes and effects of global environmental change. There is strong emphasis on developing both laboratory and fieldwork skills, with field courses in the UK as well as overseas (current students have visited Spain and Iceland).

What will this mean for my future?

Keele enjoys high rates of graduate employment, where in 2016, were recognised nationally as 1st for employability in the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey. As a graduate from this course you will have a wide range of skills that are currently in demand and, given current concerns around environmental change and natural resources, are likely to be in demand for a considerable time to come. You might choose to work in a subject specific role in geological or environmental consultancy, in planning, for a mining company, or in the oil and gas industry. Besides having strong subject specific skills, you will be an articulate communicator and confident problem solver, and these will be valuable attributes in a wide range of different careers.

Indicative modules

First year

  • Introduction to Mineralogy and Petrology (includes fieldwork)
  • Geology: Time and Space (includes fieldwork)
  • Geology: Planet Earth
  • Introduction to Sedimentology and Palaeontology (includes fieldwork)
  • Fundamentals of Physical Geography
  • Geographical Skills
  • The Practice of Physical Geography
  • People and the Environment

Second year

  • Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology
  • Reconstructing Past Environments (includes fieldwork)
  • Advanced Structural Geology and Geological Mapping Training
  • Geoscience Field Techniques
  • Dynamic Geographies
  • Practical PhysicalGeography
  • Regional Landsystems
  • Geographical Research Training

Third year

  • Independent Fieldwork Project
  • Structure and Geodynamics (includes fieldwork)
  • Natural Hazards
  • Hydrological and Engineering Geology
  • Micropalaeontology: Principles and Applications (includes fieldwork)
  • Economic Geology (includes fieldwork)
  • Advanced Topics in Sedimentology (includes fieldwork)
  • Exploration Geophysics for the Hydrocarbon Industry
  • Dissertation
  • Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology
  • Global Environmental Change
  • Water Resources
  • Inspirational Landscapes
  • Applied GIS
  • Coastal Environments

Course structure

Our degree courses are organised into modules. Each module is usually a self-contained unit of study and each is usually assessed separately with the award of credits on the basis of 1 credit = 10 hours of student effort.  An outline of the structure of the programme is provided in the tables below.

There are three types of module delivered as part of this programme. They are:

  • Compulsory modules – a module that you are required to study on this course;
  • Optional modules – these allow you some limited choice of what to study from a list of modules;
  • Elective modules – a free choice of modules that count towards the overall credit requirement but not the number of subject-related credits.

Modules Summary

The Geology programme is modular in structure and must be taken in Levels 4 and 5 in combination with another principal subject. Students may select to study only Geology modules at Level 6, or transfer to study M. Geology at Levels 6 and 7 (see M. Geology Programme Specification for details), or continue with the Combined Honours scheme at Level 6.

A summary of the total credit requirements per year is as follows, with a minimum of 90 subject credits (compulsory plus optional) required for each year across both of your Principal Subjects. This document has information about Geology modules only; please also see the document for your other subject.

Year

Compulsory

Optional

Electives

Min

Max

Min

Max

1

60

0

0

0

0

2

60

0

0

0

0

3

15

45

45

0

0

3*

45

75

75

0

0

* at Level 6 (year 3) there is the option to choose to specialise in one of your subjects. These are the credits if you choose to specialise in Geology in your final year.

 

Physical Geography A summary of the total credit requirements per year is as follows, with a minimum of 90 subject credits (compulsory plus optional) required for each year across both of your Principal Subjects. This document has information about Physical Geography modules only; please also see the document for your other subject. For Physical Geography Combined Honours:  

Year

Compulsory

Optional

Electives

Min

Max

Min

Max

1

60

0

0

0

0

2

60

0

0

0

0

3*

0

45

60

0

15

* in year 3 there is the option to choose to specialise in one of your subjects, taking a minimum of 90 credits in this subject rather than taking modules from both subjects

 

Modules - Year One

Year 1 (Level 4)

Geology Year 1 (Level 4)

It is assumed that students have no previous geological knowledge and therefore the programme starts from basics. The programme provides a broad-based introduction to geological topics at Levels 4 & 5 with emphasis on the characteristics of rocks, minerals and fossils, together with the processes that govern their formation and development.

 

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Minerals, Rocks and Fossils †

30

None

 

Earth Structure and History †

30

  

† Module contains fieldwork

Physical Geography Year 1 (Level 4)

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Fundamentals of Physical Geography

15

None

 

Geographical Skills

15

  

The Practice of Physical Geography

15

  

People and the Environment

15

  

Modules - Year Two

Year 2 (Level 5)

 

 

Geology Year 2 (Level 5)

During Level 5 particular attention is paid to first hand observation, recording and interpretation of geological phenomena in the field and laboratory. This year includes a major overseas field course. By the end of the level you will have been given a complete grounding in geology that will allow you to carry out your own independent studies.

 

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Petrology

30

None

 

Field Techniques

30

  

† Module contains fieldwork

 

Work Placement Year

Students taking the 4-year with ‘Work Placement Year’ undertake their work placement between Year-2 and Year-3 of their degree programme.  During the work placement year, students undertake a work placement (minimum 30 weeks full time (1,050 hours) or equivalent) with a geologically-focussed company or organisation. Students take the year-long, non-credit bearing module:

 

Core modules

Credits

Work Placement Year

n/a

 

International Year

Information relevant to students taking the International Year is available in Annex A.

Physical Geography Year 2 (Level 5)

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Dynamic Geographies

15

None

 

Practical Physical Geography

15

  

Regional Landsystems

15

  

Geographical Research Training

15

  

 

 

Modules - Year Three

Year 3 (Level 6)

Geology Year 3 (Level 6)

This year starts during the summer vacation when you will carry out an independent field project, which normally takes 3 weeks. During the autumn semester you will prepare a dissertation based upon this field project. In addition, there is a choice of option modules from a wide range of geological subject areas. The method and approach to teaching changes emphasis from staff-centred instruction at Levels 4 & 5 to more student-oriented activities, with components of several modules based upon independent or team-based project work.

 

There is also a change from modules based upon pure aspects of geological study to more applied aspects. It is intended that students should select their option modules according to their interests and career aspirations. Much of the content of these Level 6 option modules is based on research at the forefront of the discipline and helps to strengthen links between teaching and research.

 

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules (Choose 45 Credits)

Credits

Independent Fieldwork Project (ISP)

15

Structure and Geodynamics

15

  

Natural Hazards

15

  

Hydrological and Engineering Geology

15

  

Exploration Geophysics for Hydrocarbons

15

  

Micropalaeontology: Principles and Applications

15

  

Economic Geology

15

  

Advanced Topics in Sedimentology

15

 

Physical Geography Year 3 (Level 6) (Combined Honours)

Students take either 60 credits from the options below, or 45 credits from this list plus 15 credits from an elective outside this list. Students may take no more than one of the ISPs on this list, and do not need to take a Geography Independent Study Project (ISP) as long as there is an ISP included within their overall combined honours module diet.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

None

 

Double Dissertation ISP

30

  

Single Dissertation ISP

15

  

Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology

15

  

Inspirational Landscapes

15

  

Global Environmental Change

15

  

Water Resources

15

  

Applied GIS

15

  

Coastal Environments

15

  

Environment and Sustainability Case Study

15

  

Natural Hazards

15

 

 

Modules - Year Four

If you choose to specialise in Geology in your final year you will study the following modules:

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules (Choose 75 Credits)

Credits

Independent Fieldwork Project (ISP)

15

Structure and Geodynamics

15

Geological Communication Skills

15

Natural Hazards

15

Volcanic and Magmatic Processes

15

Hydrological and Engineering Geology

15

  

Exploration Geophysics for Hydrocarbons

15

  

Micropalaeontology: Principles and Applications

15

  

Economic Geology

15

  

Advanced Topics in Sedimentology

15

  

Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology *

15

  

Global Environmental Change *

15

  

Water Resources *

15

  

Coastal Environments *

15

* No more than two of these Physical Geography modules may be taken

† Module contains fieldwork

 

If you choose to specialise in Physical Geography in your final year you will take either 120 credits from the list below, or 105 credits from this list plus 15 credits from an elective outside this list. Students must take one of the two Dissertation ISP options below.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

None

 

Double Dissertation ISP

30

  

Single Dissertation ISP

15

  

Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology

15

  

Global Environmental Change

15

  

Water Resources

15

  

Natural Hazards

15

  

Inspirational Landscapes

15

  

Applied GIS*

15

  

Coastal Environments

15

  

Trees in their Environment*

15

  

Contemporary Topics in Environmental Science

15

  

Environment & Sustainability Case Study

15

 

For further information on the content of modules currently offered, including the list of elective modules, please visit: www.keele.ac.uk/recordsandexams/az




Download Course Information Document (PDF)




Download Course Information Document 2 (PDF)


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