Geography

School of Natural Resources and Agricultural Sciences
UA Geography Program
907-474-7494
www.uagp.uaf.edu

B.A., B.S. Degrees; Minor

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Minimum Requirements for Degrees: 120 credits

Geography provides a holistic view of the earth, its distinct and varied regions, as well as the types of and interaction between human activities and the physical world. Geography is the two-way bridge between the physical and social sciences as it explores the interrelationships between the earth's physical and biological systems and how these environmental systems provide a natural resource base for human societies. Geography also provides the framework for the integration of new and emerging technologies such as GIS and remote sensing with studies in a broad range of academic disciplines.

Geographers are interested in patterns and processes of physical and social change, including climate change, geographic information science and technologies, human settlement patterns, natural resources distribution and management, environmental studies, and in the inherent "sense of place" among peoples throughout the world. Geographic methodologies include observation, measurement, description and analysis of places including likenesses, differences, interdependence and importance.

The geography B.A. degree provides broad cultural training and background in the liberal arts with an emphasis on the circumpolar North and Pacific Rim. The B.A. also provides a geographic perspective based on these regions and prepares students for careers in management, policy, teaching, field-based research, regional planning and private sector careers. The B.A. also provides an excellent foundation for advanced studies in a wide range of academic disciplines.

Three emphasis options are available to students pursuing the B.S. degree: environmental studies, landscape analysis and climate change studies, and geographic information science and technology.

Environmental studies provides the foundation necessary for understanding the natural and social environment, analysis of environmental issues from an interdisciplinary geographic perspective, a diverse technical and scientific approach to environmental issues, and the ability to find balanced solutions to environmental problems.

Landscape analysis and climate change studies integrate and synthesize courses in geography, climate change, physical and biological sciences, and geographic information sciences and technology. Students will gain a sound and interdisciplinary understanding of how environmental change influences landscape patterns and humans on both spatial (e.g. latitude, altitude) and temporal (e.g. past, future) scales. Senior practicum courses serve as integrating "capstone experiences" enabling students to apply what they have learned in real-world settings.

Geographic information science and technology emphasizes skills and practices in geographic information science, systems, technology and analytical aspects of geography. Courses in statistics, computer programming, GIS, GPS and remote sensing are integrated with the geography core curriculum and courses in natural sciences.

A minor in geography is also available.

Major -- B.A. Degree

  1. Complete the general university requirements.
  2. Complete the B.A. degree requirements.
  3. Complete the following required foundation courses:*
    GEOG F101--Expedition Earth: Introduction to Geography--3 credits
    GEOG F111X--Earth and Environment: Elements of Physical Geography--4 credits
    GEOG F312--People, Places, and Environment: Principles of Human Geography--3 credits
    GEOG F338--An Introduction to GIS--3 credits
    GEOG F490W,O--Geography Seminar--3 credits
  4. Complete the following program (major) requirements. Students will tailor their program through course selection from the categories below in consultation with their advisor to focus on a subspecialty in the Circumpolar North and/or the Pacific Rim.
    1. Regional Geography: Complete two of the following:
      GEOG F302--Geography of Alaska--3 credits
      GEOG F303--Geography of United States and Canada--3 credits
      GEOG F305W--Geography of Europe--3 credits
      GEOG F306--Geography of Russia--3 credits
      GEOG F311W--Geography of Asia--3 credits
      GEOG F410--Geography of the Pacific Rim--3 credits
      GEOG F427--Polar Geography--3 credits
    2. Physical Geography: Complete one of the following:
      GEOG F339--Maps and Landscape Analysis--3 credits
      GEOG F307--Weather and Climate--3 credits
      GEOG F412--Geography of Climate Change--3 credits
      GEOG F418--Biogeography--3 credits
    3. Human Geography: Complete one of the following:
      GEOG F203--World Economic Geography--3 credits
      GEOG F402--Resources and Environment--3 credits
      GEOG F404--Urban Geography--3 credits
      GEOG F405--Political Geography--3 credits
    4. Technique: Complete one of the following:
      GEOG F301--Geographic Field Studies--3 credits
      GEOG F309--Digital Cartography and Geo-Visualization--4 credits
      GEOS F458--Geoscience Applications of GPS and GIS--3 credits
    5. Electives: Complete two courses (six credits) from any of the above categories, or other courses appropriate to the student's chosen program of study. Both courses must be at F300-level or higher and approved by the student's advisor.
  5. Complete approved electives--open
  6. Minimum credits required--120 credits

Note: Geography majors are encouraged to reinforce their program focus with a minor in one of the following areas:

Alaska Native Studies, Anthropology, Asian Studies, Economics, Environmental Politics, Foreign Languages, Geology, Geophysics, Global Studies, History, Journalism, Natural Resource Management, Northern Studies, Political Science, Rural Development, Russian Studies

Note: Students and faculty advisors should carefully review prerequisites for courses outlined in each required and/or optional area. In some instances courses, either in geography or other fields, require successful completion of from 1 - 3 prerequisite courses. Therefore, students and faculty should note minimum degree credit hours are 120, but the actual number of required course credits may exceed that number.

Major -- B.S. Degree

  1. Complete the general university requirements.
  2. Complete the B.S. degree requirements.
  3. Complete the following required foundation courses:*
    GEOG F101--Expedition Earth: Introduction to Geography--3 credits
    GEOG F111X--Earth and Environment: Elements of Physical Geography--4 credits
    GEOG F312--People, Places, and Environment: Principles of Human Geography--3 credits
    GEOG F338--An Introduction to GIS--3 credits
    GEOG F490W,O--Geography Seminar--3 credits
  4. Complete one of the following options:*
    Geography Option I -- Environmental Studies
    1. Complete the following:
      GEOG F207--Research Methods and Statistics in Geography--3 credits
      GEOG F307--Weather and Climate--3 credits
      GEOG F339--Maps and Landscape Analysis--3 credits
      GEOG F402--Resources and Environment--3 credits
    2. Complete 6 credits from the following environmental studies electives:
      GEOG F463--Wilderness Concepts--3 credits
      NRM F303X--Environmental Ethics and Actions**--3 credits
      NRM F407--Environmental Law--3 credits
    3. Complete 9 credits from the following environmental system electives:
      ANTH F428--Ecological Anthropology and Regional Sustainability***--3 credits
      BIOL F271--Principles of Ecology***--4 credits
      BIOL/NRM F277--Introduction to Conservation Biology***--3 credits
      GEOS F304--Geomorphology--3 credits
      NRM F375--Forest Ecology***--3 credits
      NRM F380W--Soils and the Environment***--3 credits
    4. Complete 3 credits from the following environmental management electives:
      FISH F487W,O--Fisheries Management***--3 credits
      NRM F365--Principles of Outdoor Recreation Management--3 credits
      NRM F430--Resource Management Planning--3 credits
      NRM/WLF F431--Wildlife Law and Policy***--3 credits
      NRM F450--Forest Management***--3 credits
      NRM F480--Soil Management for Quality and Conservation***--3 credits
    5. Complete one of the following techniques courses:
      GEOG F301--Geographic Field Studies--3 credits
      GEOG F309--Digital Cartography and Geo-Visualization--4 credits
      GEOG F435--GIS Analysis--4 credits
      GEOS F458--Geoscience Applications of GPS and GIS***--3 credits

    Geography Option II -- Landscape Analysis and Climate Change Studies:
    1. Complete B.S. degree options, STAT F200X or 300, and prerequisite courses BIOL F115X, BIOL F116X, and CHEM F105X.
    2. Complete the following Processes requirements (geomorphology, climate, ecology, systems):
      GEOG F307--Weather and Climate--3 credits
      GEOG F412--Geography of Climate and Environmental Change--3 credits
      GEOG F418--Biogeography--3 credits
      BIOL F271--Principles of Ecology***--4 credits
      GEOS F304--Geomorphology***--3 credits
    3. Complete one of the following Processes electives:
      BIOL F467--Ecosystems of Alaska***--3 credits
           or BIOL F469 O--Landscape Ecology and Wildlife Habitat (3)***
           or NRM F370--Watershed Management (3)***
           or NRM F380 W--Soils and the Environment(3)***
           or a processes-oriented content course approved by Geography faculty advisor.
    4. Complete the following Patterns requirements (Field Methods, GIS/Remote Sensing Tools):
      GEOG F309--Digital Cartography and Geo-Visualization--4 credits
      GEOG F339--Maps and Landscape Analysis--3 credits
      GEOG F435--GIS Analysis--4 credits
      GEOS F458--Geoscience Applications***--3 credits
    5. Complete at least one of the following Patterns electives:
      GE F471--Remote Sensing for Engineering***--3 credits
           or GEOS F422--Geoscience Applications of Remote Sensing***--3 credits
           or GEOS F434--Remote Sensing of the Cryosphere***--3 credits
           or NRM F641--Remote Sensing Applications in Natural Resources***--4 credits
    6. Complete the following Senior Practicum requirements (program synthesis):
      GEOG F488--Geographic Assessment and Prediction of Natural Hazards--3 credits
      GEOG F489W--Senior Practicum: Field Studies in Landscape Analysis and Climate Change--4 credits

    Geography Option III -- Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIS&T)
    1. Complete B.S. degree options, including prerequisite course, PHYS F103X.
    2. Complete the following GIS&T breadth:
      CS F103--Introduction to Computer Programming***--3 credits
      STAT F200X--Elementary Probability and Statistics***--3 credits
      GEOG F339--Maps and Landscape Analysis--3 credits
      GEOG F435--GIS Analysis--3 credits
      GEOG F300--Internship in Natural Resources Management and Geography--3 credits
    3. Complete at least two courses of remote sensing electives:
      GE F471--Remote Sensing for Engineering***--3 credits
      GEOS F422--Geoscience Applications of Remote Sensing***--3 credits
      GEOS F434--Remote Sensing of Cryosphere***--3 credits
      NRM F641--Remote Sensing Applications in Natural Resources--4 credits
    4. Complete at least two courses of GIS electives:
      GE F376--GIS in Geological and Environmental Engineering***--3 credits
      GEOG F309--Digital Cartography and Geo-Visualization--4 credits
      GEOS F458--Geoscience Applications of GPS and GIS***--3 credits
      NRM F638--GIS Programming‡--3 credits
    5. Complete at least two courses in Landscape electives:
      BIOL F469O--Landscape Ecology and Wildlife Habitat***--3 credits
      GEOS F304--Geomorphology***--3 credits
      GEOS F408--Photogeology***--3 credits
      GEOS F430--Statistics and Data Analysis in Geology***--3 credits
  5. Minimum credits required--120 credits

* Students must earn a C grade (2.0) or better in each course.

** If used to fulfill core requirements, NRM F303X may not also count towards geography major.

*** Prerequisites required.

‡ Graduate level credit used to complete this undergraduate degree program may NOT be applied towards future graduate degree programs.

Note: Students and faculty advisors should carefully review prerequisites for courses outlined in each required and/or optional area. In some instances, courses, either in geography or other fields require successful completion of from 1 - 3 prerequisite courses. Therefore, students and faculty should note minimum degree credit hours are 120, but the actual number of required course credits may exceed that number.

Minor

  1. Complete the following:
    GEOG F101--Expedition Earth: Introduction to Geography (3)
         or GEOG F203--World Economic Geography (3)--3 credits
    GEOG F111X--Earth and Environment: Elements of Physical Geography--4 credits
    GEOG electives--8 - 9 credtis
  2. Minimum credits required--15 credits

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