Geography Degree: What to expect?


picture of Geography Degree: What to expect?

Knowledge is a powerful weapon when it comes to saving the planet. A geography degree goes beyond rock formations and mountain ranges, though that’s certainly part of your curriculum. You don’t study how old a landform is, but rather what its political and cultural implications are.

Didn’t know rocks could be political? While you won’t see them voting at the polls, the elements of nature nevertheless stir up controversy between government officials. Jobs for geography majors can fall on the scientific or political ends of the spectrum as you explore everything from cultures and their interactions with nature to the consequences of heavy deforestation.

Training

Geography degrees typically last three to four years. Your first year is a well-balanced blend of classes covering Earth systems, human geography, physical geography, and different philosophies on current geography-related events. As one of the more hands-on college degrees, geography takes you out of the classroom to explore different terrains. Who wants to take notes when you could earn your credits through field trips and study-abroad programs?

Once you’ve seen all that geography has to offer, it’s time to choose your specialty. In broad terms, geography falls into human geography and physical geography. So if you want to concentrate on cities and urbanization, human geography is for you. If the scientific aspects of global warming or drilling for oil call to you, then physical geography is the way to go.

Many, if not all, of your classes have online options for a more flexible schedule. Consider an online geography degree if you’re working while attending college, or simply prefer going to class at 3 a.m. in your bunny slippers.

Next Step

When it comes to graduates with a bachelor’s in geography, the field is split pretty evenly on who goes to graduate school and who jumps straight into a career. Many seek careers in law, research, or planning, and attend graduate school for a more focused geography degree in their field of choice. The science and math requirements, combined with the cultural and social issues you study both as an undergraduate and graduate, build a strong platform to springboard into virtually any field of your choosing. Consider seeking employment upon graduation and pursuing your master’s degree online so you can have the best of both worlds: a fulfilling, well-paid job and a higher education without all the extra debt.



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