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Undergraduate Study

BSc Geography with Applied GIS

UCAS code F809
Duration 3 years
Entry year 2021
Contact

Web: Enquire online
Phone: +44 (0)1392 725818

Entry requirements

A levels: AAA - AAB
IB: 36/666 - 34/665
BTEC: DDD

View full entry requirements

Campus Streatham Campus
Discipline Geography

Overview

  • Learn from leaders in their fields about critical global issues and challenges affecting environments and societies around the world
  • Develop a comprehensive grounding in physical geography with a specialism in GIS, plus optional modules across geography and beyond
  • Discover how mapping and analytics are accelerating our understanding of big data, empowering digital transformation and being applied in a growing industry crossing the business, government, science and leisure sectors
  • Develop the theoretical and practical skills required to capture, manage, manipulate, analyse and present a range of geographically-referenced data in GIS using industry standard software
  • Join a friendly and active student community: the Geography Society is one of the university’s largest and provides members with regular socials, sports teams, weekend trips and the famous GeogSoc ball

What is GIS?

GIS is a technology at the heart of spatial analysis, used to map things and locations to answer questions, detect patterns, tell stories and make insights that cannot be inferred from spreadsheets and charts.

It is a science and discipline in its own right, which is recognised by the new Geography with Applied GIS programme at Exeter and the success of its graduates. Find out how the University of Exeter is leading in GIS teaching.

Top 25 in the world for Geography

QS World University Rankings 2020

8th in the UK for Geography and Environmental Science

The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020

Learn from experts on field courses around the world

Spend a year studying abroad or on a professional placement

I used GIS in my dissertation to investigate the impact of hurricanes on sea surface temperature, something I couldn’t have imagined studying before university! The Geography with Applied GIS programme introduced me to web GIS and ways to visualise and present spatial information. The skills and knowledge I developed on the degree secured me a place on the Esri UK graduate program.

I’m now a year in and still excited be applying the GIS skills I learnt during my degree in my job.

Read more from Max

Max

BSc Geography with Applied GIS

Entry requirements

Qualification Required grades Required subjects
A-Level AAA - AAB

A*AA - AAA (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
B in a science subject*

A in a science subject* (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
IB 36/666 - 34/665

38/766 - 36/666 (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
HL5 in a science subject*

HL6 in a science subject* (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
BTEC DDD

D*DD - DDD (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
Applicants studying a BTEC Extended Diploma are also required to achieve A-level grade B in a science subject*

Applicants studying a BTEC Extended Diploma are also required to achieve A-level grade A in a science subject* (with Study Abroad/Professional Placement/European Study)
GCSE C or 4 English Language
Contextual Offer

A-Level: BBB
IB: 30
BTEC: DDM

Specific requirements must still be achieved, therefore where a grade A is required, offers will be ABC or ACC. Find out more about contextual offers.

Other UK, EU and International equivalences

View UK, EU and International equivalences

NB General Studies is not included in any offer.

*Accepted science subjects: Biology/Human Biology; Chemistry; Computing; Design and Technology; Electronics; Environmental Studies; Geography; Geology; Life and Health Sciences (Double Award only), Marine Science; Maths/Pure Maths/Further Maths; Physical Education; Physics; Psychology; Science (applied); Sport Science; Statistics.

Course content

Geographical Information Systems (GIS) are revolutionising geography through spatial analysis with mapping and geo-technologies to provide the technical means for data exploration, visualisation and dissemination of developed understanding.

In our BSc Geography with Applied GIS you will enjoy studying the breadth of geography while gaining knowledge and hands-on experience of how mapping and analytics is accelerating our understanding of big data, empowering digital transformation and how it is being applied in a growing industry crossing all sectors including business, government, science and leisure.

In the compulsory modules, you will develop skills such as statistical analysis, learning to code for data analysis, geospatial investigation and mapping through the use of GIS, image analysis of earth observation data and data collection in the field. Training is provided on industry-standard software packages for spatial data analysis which are important skills across all employment sectors.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

The first year of study on this programme is the same as for the BSc Geography programme. It provides an introduction to wide-ranging research areas in physical geography and core academic skills.

Building on content from the first year, you will undertake core modules in applied GIS, remote sensing and research modules including the physical geography field trip. Training and support enables you to start developing a proposal for a final year research project with applied GIS. In addition, you will have flexibility to select optional physical and/or human geography modules to suit your developing interests.

Find out more about placement and study abroad options under Course variants.

with Professional Placement

with Study Abroad

with European Study

A significant focus in your final year is the research-led dissertation which will utilise GIS for the data analysis. You will receive supervision from an expert in your chosen area of physical geography.

This year, you will continue to develop skills and understanding of GIS in modules including GIS for Professionals and Landscape Systems Management. We offer a wide range of modules for you to select in your final year covering both human and physical geography specialisms aligned to our research expertise.

I undertook a 10-month placement in Bristol at a company called TCarta in the role of GIS/Remote Sensing Analyst Support Technician. I help on a variety of projects across the company, with any GIS and remote sensing analysis required. The experience has been extremely beneficial for my career: it has given me an insight into working life and what to expect from a job in this industry.

I have been involved in several different projects, including a project on Air Quality monitoring, using machine learning and satellite imagery to detect moving vehicles in London in order to analyse emission estimates.

Read more from Amy

Amy

BSc Geography with Applied GIS with Professional Placement

Course variants

UCAS code: F814

Why choose a professional placement year?

In your professional placement year you will learn to apply the knowledge learnt during your first and second years, improve personal and transferable skills, make new contacts and enhance your employability. Work placements allow you to gain experience of a professional workplace prior to graduating and develop your career focus, and are extremely valued by employers.

Where can I do my placement?

On this four-year variant of the BSc Geography with Applied GIS degree you will spend your third year on a self-organised work placement with an organisation relevant to your degree, which we support you to secure. Students have worked with a variety of employers such as the UK Hydrographic Office, Ernst & Young and a wildlife conversation charity in Kenya, undertaking placements both in the UK and internationally.

What support is available during my placement?

You will be supported through your professional placement by a programme director who will provide high quality advice to ensure you get the most from your placement.

Does it count towards my degree?

The professional placement year counts towards your degree through the completion of your placement and associated coursework. It contributes to your final degree classification, and the words ‘with Professional Placement’ will appear in your degree title.

During your first, second and final years of study, you will follow the same programme of study as the BSc Geography with Applied GIS (see Course content). 

How does it affect my tuition fee?

If you spend a full year on a work placement (in the UK or abroad) you will pay a reduced fee. Find out more in the fees section

How do I apply?

You can apply to BSc Geography with Applied GIS with Professional Placement directly through UCAS using the code above. 

How are the placements organised?

You are responsible for organising your own placement; however, we have established collaborations with local, national and international organisations that you can consider when applying for placement positions.

UCAS code: F811

Why study abroad?

Students who have studied abroad demonstrate initiative, independence, motivation and, depending on where they stay, may also have gained a working knowledge of another language – all qualities employers are looking for.

Where can I study abroad?

On this four-year variant of the BSc Geography with Applied GIS degree you will spend your third year at one of our international exchange partner universities in Australia, New Zealand, the United States or Japan.

You can find a complete list of International Exchange partner universities on the Study Abroad website (click on the College of Life and Environmental Sciences link, then look under Geography).

What will I study whilst I am abroad?

Whilst abroad you will study approved modules at the host university equivalent to 120 Exeter credits; these will be credited towards your degree, which you would then complete after four years of study rather than three.

Does it count towards my degree?

Yes - Whilst abroad you will study approved modules at the host university to the value of 120 credits. Your work during the year abroad is assessed and contributes to your final degree classification. The words ‘with Study Abroad’ will appear in your degree title and be recorded on your degree certificate.

During your first, second and final years of study, you will follow the same programme of study as the BSc Geography with Applied GIS (see Course content).

How does it affect my tuition fee?

If you spend a full academic year studying abroad you will pay a reduced fee. Find out more in the fees section.

How do I apply?

You can apply directly to this programme through UCAS using the code above. To be eligible for a Study Abroad place, we would expect you to successfully complete your Year 1 studies with an average mark of at least 60%.

Occasionally it is possible to transfer onto this programme from the standard BSc Geography with Applied GIS course in your second year, if you have appropriate language skills and have achieved a mark of 60% or more in year 1.

Further information

For further information on where you can go and all the issues surrounding study abroad, see the Study Abroad website.

UCAS code: F810

Why choose European study?

Students who have studied abroad demonstrate initiative, independence, motivation and, depending on where they stay, may also have gained a working knowledge of another language – all qualities employers are looking for. Courses at some of the partner universities are taught in English.

Where can I study?

On this four-year variant of the BSc Geography with Applied GIS degree you will spend your third year studying at one of our European partner universities in Switzerland, France, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Finland, Belgium, Holland, Spain or Sweden. You can find a complete list of International Exchange partner universities on the Study Abroad website (click on the College of Life and Environmental Sciences link, then look under Geography).

What will I study whilst I am abroad?

Whilst abroad you will study approved modules at the host university to the value of 60 ECTS credits; these will be credited towards your degree, which you would then complete after four years of study rather than three.

Does it count towards my degree?

Yes - your work during the year abroad is assessed and contributes to your final degree classification. The words ‘with European Study’ will be on your degree certificate.

During your first, second and final years of study, you will follow the same programme of study as the BSc Geography with Applied GIS (see Course content).

How does it affect my tuition fee?

If you spend a full academic year studying abroad you will pay a reduced fee. Find out more in the fees section.

How do I apply?

You can apply directly to this programme through UCAS. Occasionally it is possible to transfer onto this programme from the standard BSc Geography with Applied GIS in your second year, if you have appropriate language skills and have achieved a mark of 60% or more in year 1.

Further information

For further information on where you can go and all the issues surrounding study abroad, see the Study Abroad website.

Fees

Tuition fees for 2021 entry

UK students: £9,250 per year
International students: £23,800 per year

Year abroad

If you choose the four-year version of this degree programme and spend a full academic year studying abroad, you will pay a reduced fee of 15 per cent of the maximum fee for that year.

Professional placement year

If you choose the four-year version of this degree programme and spend a full year on a work placement (in the UK or abroad) you will pay a reduced fee of 20 per cent of the maximum fee for that year.

Field work

Please note, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs. When participating in field courses, you will be required to cover any visa costs and, if necessary, purchase anti-malarial medication and relevant immunisations. You may also need to provide your own specialist personal equipment appropriate to the field course destination. You may incur additional costs dependent upon the specific demands of the research project chosen.

Scholarships

Esri UK Scholarships for Black and mixed Black heritage students

Esri UK is establishing a new scholarship programme to encourage and support Black African, Caribbean, Black or mixed Black heritage students in the study of geography and geoscience. The Undergraduate Award of £10,000/year can be spent on fees or maintenance. Applications will open on 15 January 2021 for UK-based students. Find out more on Esri UK's website.

Scholarships

The University of Exeter is offering scholarships to the value of over £4 million for students starting with us in September 2021. Details of scholarships, including our Global Excellence scholarships for international fee paying students, can be found on our dedicated funding page.

Find out more about tuition fees and funding

Fieldwork

Fieldwork is an integral part of your degree, and a crucial part of our teaching in Geography.

You will begin with a UK residential field course in your first year, where you will explore new and exciting ways of reading landscapes to research geographical issues. This will enable you to apply what you are learning about, learn how to conduct research as a geographer and observe geographical processes in action.

In second year, you’ll build on these experiences with a one week international field course to one of several international locations. Previous destinations have included the Bay of Naples, Brazil, California and Slovenia*.

We also make the most of our location in the South West of England organising around 15 day trips each year as part of modules. These provide fantastic opportunities to study a range of distinctive human and physical process.

*Field course destinations are subject to change. Please note, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs. Find out more in the Fees section.

Learning and teaching

How will I learn?

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Workshops
  • Tutorials – small group discussion classes of 6-12 students
  • Computer practicals
  • Laboratory classes
  • Field work
  • Independent study

Learn from the experts

You will join a large, energetic community of Geography students and staff presenting a thriving environment in which to study. Our academic staff are world leaders across many critical contemporary research areas, from the protection of the Great Barrier Reef and the tropical ecology of the Amazonian forest to the reduction of antimicrobial use in farming, the geopolitics of migration and refugee displacement, and the development of craft economies.

We have strong links with international, national, and local research projects around the globe, and staff draw upon the insights and examples these provide in their teaching.

Learning technology and facilities

All students have access to well-equipped laboratories and the latest geographical information systems (GIS), mapping statistics and coding software. In lectures we encourage you to contribute through the use of smart phone interactive technology to ask questions or submit feedback.

We have a virtual learning environment, where the details of all modules are stored in an easily navigable website. Here you can access detailed information about learning outcomes, and interact through discussion forums, blogging and virtual field trips. The virtual field trips integrate video and audio data, maps, datasets, documents and published research to help you develop field work and analytical skills that are firmly grounded in the real world.

Assessment

Your progress is monitored through tutorial work and practical assessments. Your final degree mark is based on approximately 50 per cent exam-based and 50 per cent coursework-based assessments. This is however, dependent on your module choices where some optional modules might be 100% coursework for example. You can therefore pick modules by topic but also based on what you think will best allow you to demonstrate your learning. In your final year you will undertake a dissertation, which is an independent research project on the topic that excites you most.

You must pass your modules in the first year in order to progress, but your marks in this year do not influence your final degree classification.

Academic support

We are committed to providing you with a supportive learning environment in which you can build confidence and mastery of Geography.

You will have a personal and academic tutor who is available for advice and support throughout your studies and to support the transition to university-level learning. You will also be represented through Student-Staff Liaison Committees and have regular opportunities to feedback on your course and modules.

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Your future

Employer-valued skills this course develops

Students studying Geography develop both a depth and breadth of knowledge, skills and experiences that make them highly employable across a diverse range of careers.

These skills include:

  • Data gathering
  • Information retrieval
  • Problem solving
  • Project planning and management
  • Organising and communicating information
  • Report production and presentation (written and oral)
  • Plus the ability to work effectively on your own and as part of a team.

Supporting your career in Geography

We put on a range of employability sessions for students which include:

  • Career talks with visiting alumni and employers from a range of backgrounds,
  • Career conversations and employability seminar series events with employers,
  • A Careers in Sustainable Development and Environmental Protection Careers and Networking event
  • Visits to the Met Office and UKHO
  • The College of Life and Environmental Sciences annual Careers Fair
  • Opportunities to access high-quality work placements through an employability optional module.

Careers services

We have a dedicated, award-winning Careers Service ensuring you have access to careers advisors, mentors and the tools you need to succeed in finding employment in your chosen field on graduation. We offer the Exeter Award and the Exeter Leaders Award which include employability-related workshops, skills events, volunteering and employment which will contribute to your career decision-making skills and success in the employment market.

The University of Exeter has an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and our students and graduates compete very successfully in the employment market. Whatever path you wish to follow, we’re here to help and support you with all your career and employability needs.

Royal Geographical Society (RGS) Ambassador Scheme

You will have the opportunity to apply for the RGS Ambassador Scheme. The scheme recruits, trains and supports geographers currently at university and graduate geographers from the work place to act as ambassadors for geography in the classroom. Ambassadors act as positive role models for pupils and can illustrate, with enthusiasm, both the specific and transferable skills they have developed as a geographer. For more information you can visit the RGS Ambassador Scheme website.

Career paths

The breadth of career opportunities open to Geography graduates is vast, with recent graduates starting careers in planning, environmental and sustainability projects, water analysis, insurance, teaching and more – both in the UK and overseas.

Whatever you choose to do after graduation, your Geography degree will stand you in good stead, with excellent employment prospects and transferable skills.

Recent graduates

Below are a few examples of initial jobs undertaken by graduates from our Geography undergraduate programmes. This information has been taken from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Surveys 2016/17. Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Recent graduates are now working as:

  • Asset Information Technician
  • Assistant Quantity Surveyor
  • Business Analyst
  • Environmental Technician
  • Forestry Contractor
  • Graduate Soil Scientist
  • Graduate Teacher Training Scheme
  • Marketing Executive
  • Project Support Officer
  • Qualitative Research Executive

Recent graduates are now working for:

  • British Red Cross
  • Civil Service
  • Defra
  • Ecosavers
  • KPMG
  • Natural England
  • South West Water
  • The Carbon Trust
  • The National Trust
  • Unilever

Further study

Further study is a popular choice for a number of students following graduation from a Geography undergraduate degree. Below are a few examples of further study undertaken by recent graduates of undergraduate programmes. This information has been taken from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Surveys 2016/17.

  • MA Climate Change: History, Culture, Society
  • MA Environment, Development and Policy
  • MRes Critical Human Geographies
  • MSc Applied GIS and Remote Sensing
  • MSc Sustainability, Planning and Environmental Policy
  • MSc Oceanography
  • PGCE Geography
  • MSc Spatial Planning and Development
  • MSc International Management
  • MSc Environment and Human Health

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