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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  Study  /  Undergraduate  /  Current Students  /  Degree Structure

Degree Structure

Aims and Objectives

The general aims of all Geography undergraduate degree programmes are:

  • To develop each student's intellectual skills of reasoning, analysis and critical thought through the application of geographical knowledge and methods; and to advance his/her investigative skills in the analysis of complex human and physical geographical problems.
  • help each student develop the means to communicate orally, in writing and numerically in a clear, concise and effective way;
  • help each student develop a range of transferable skills such as: time management and effective work strategies to meet deadlines, and to acquire library, fieldwork and laboratory research skills that allow the production of original pieces of work;
  • encourage appreciation of the interdisciplinary nature of geographical education by providing students with a coherent set of  course choices that demonstrate an explicit sense of intellectual progression over three years, ensuring that students graduate from a degree course best suited to their interests and career aspirations as: skilled social scientists – able to move into research or management positions in private and public sector organisations; or skilled environmental scientists – with career paths directed towards environmental research, specialist positions in environmental policy, or management positions in private and public sector organisations; or well rounded graduates in the 'liberal arts' tradition – who will leave with a comprehensive understanding of the nature of geography and its methods, and able to enter a wide range of employment.

Unit Requirements

Most Undergraduate modules in the Geography Department are weighted at 0.5 credit units. Students usually take 4 credit units per year. In the first year, students must pass 3 units in order to proceed to their second year. In the second year, students must pass a minimum of 7 units to proceed to year 3. In order to qualify for a classified Honours degree, students on a 3 year programme must complete 12 units and pass 11. Students on the International Programme must complete 16 units and pass 14.5 to be eligible for the honours degree.

BA/BSc

First Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total of which three half unit modules (1.5 units) are compulsory:
Compulsory modules
GEOG1003 Data Acquisition and Interpretation (including field class) (0.5 unit)
GEOG1006
Ideas in Geography (0.5 unit)
GEOG1008
Writing and Analysis in Geography (0.5 unit)
Module choices: The remaining 2.5 units can be selected from:
GEOG1001 London: a Geographical Introduction (0.5 unit)
GEOG1002 Environmental Systems and Processes (0.5 unit)
GEOG1004 Human Ecology: Geographical Perspectives (0.5 unit)
GEOG1005 Environmental Change (0.5 unit)
GEOG1007 Global Geographies (0.5 unit)
or one half unit ancillary courses chosen from other departments

Second Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total. Of these at least two 0.5 unit modules are compulsory
Compulsory modules
GEOG2001 The Practice of Geography (0.5 unit)
And at least ONE of the following:
GEOG2002 Methods in Physical Geography (0.5 unit)
GEOG2003 Methods in Human Geography (0.5 unit)
Module choices: The remaining 3 (2.5) units can be selected from a choice of SIX 0.5 unit second year Geography modules from second year Geography modules or FIVE 0.5 unit Geography modules and a 0.5 ancillary module from outside the Department.

Third Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total. Of these the 1.5 unit is GEOG3040 Dissertation is compulsory. Students can then select 2.5 units from third year Geography modules or 2 units from Geography and a 0.5 unit ancillary module from outside the Department.


Students going on the Erasmus exchange programme for one term, must register for 1.0 units from Geography in term 2 or a 0.5 unit from Geography and a 0.5 unit ancillary module from outside the Department. Erasmus modules count for 1.5 units.

BSc Env. Geography

First Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total of which five half unit modules (2.5 units) are compulsory:
Compulsory modules
GEOG1002 Environmental Systems and Processes (0.5 unit)
GEOG1003 Data Acquisition and Interpretation (including field class) (0.5 unit)
GEOG1005 Environmental Change (0.5 unit)
GEOG1006 Ideas in Geography (0.5 unit)
GEOG1008 Writing and Analysis in Geography (0.5 unit)
Module choices: The remaining 1.5 units can be selected from:
GEOG1001 London: a Geographical Introduction (0.5 unit)
GEOG1004 Human Ecology: Geographical Perspectives (0.5 unit)
GEOG1007 Global Geographies (0.5 unit)
or up to two half unit ancillary courses chosen from other departments.

Second Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total. Of these at two 0.5 unit modules are compulsory.
Compulsory modules
GEOG2001 The Practice of Geography (0.5 unit)
GEOG2002 Methods in Physical Geography (0.5 unit)
Module choices: The remaining 3 units can be selected from a choice of SIX 0.5 unit second year Geography modules from second year Geography modules or FIVE 0.5 unit Geography modules and a 0.5 ancillary module from outside the Department.

Third Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total. Of these the 1.5 unit GEOG3040 Dissertation is compulsory. Students can then select 2.5 units from third year Geography modules or 2 units from Geography and a 0.5 unit ancillary module from outside the Department.

Students going on the Erasmus exchange programme for one term, must register for 1.0 units from Geography in term 2 or a 0.5 unit from Geography and a 0.5 unit ancillary module from outside the Department. Erasmus modules count for 1.5 units.

Econ:Geog

First Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total: two in Economics and two in Geography.
Economics:
ECON1001 Economics (1.0 unit)
ECON1004 Introduction to Mathematics for Economics (0.5 unit)
and EITHER:

ECON1003 Statistical Methods in Economics (0.5 unit)
(This must be taken in the first year if ECON1002: Applied Economics is
to be taken in the second or third year).

OR

ECON1005 The World EconomY (0.5 unit)

OR

ECON1006 History of Economic Thought (0.5 unit)

OR

ECON1009 - Introduction to Economic Thinking

Geography:
Students must take:
GEOG1006 Ideas in Geography (0.5 unit)
GEOG1007 Global Geographies (0.5 unit)
GEOG1008 Writing and Analysis in Geography (0.5 unit)
plus ONE of the following:
GEOG1001 London (0.5 unit)
GEOG1002 Environmental Systems and Processes (0.5 unit)
GEOG1004 Human Ecology (0.5 unit)
GEOG1005 Environmental Change (0.5 unit)

Second Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total: normally two in Economics and two in Geography.
Economics:
There are two compulsory modules in the second year.
ECON2001 Microeconomics (1.0 unit)
ECON2004 Macroeconomic Theory and Policy (1.0 unit)
Students have the option of taking one extra 0.5 unit
ECON1002 Applied Economics (0.5 unit) must be taken as the extra 0.5 unit in the second year if ECON2007: Quantitative Economics and Econometrics is to be taken in the third year.
An extra 0.5 unit in Economics can only be taken if at least ONE AND A HALF units of Geography are taken in the final year. This guarantees that it is not possible to obtain a combined-studies degree without having done at least 3.0 units of Geography in the second and third years.
Geography:
Students must take a minimum of 1.5 units from the second year Geography modules. Normally, students will NOT take a dissertation in their final year but exceptions may be made if a reasonable case is put forward in writing to the Geography combined-studies degree tutor by the end of the first week of the second year.  Students wishing to write a 1.0 unit final-year dissertation must take GEOG2001: The Practice of Geography and GEOG2003: Methods in Human Geography in the second year plus two other 0.5 units from the second year Geography options.

Third Year

Students are required to take 4 units in total
Economics:
At least 1.0 unit and not more than 3.0 units can be selected from any of the second/third year modules in Economics although ECON2007: Quantitative Economics and Econometrics may also be taken if ECON1002: Applied Economics was taken in the second year.
Geography:
At least 1.0 unit and not more than 3.0 units must be chosen from all final year Human Geography modules.

Ancillary modules

Ancillary modules are elective modules taken from outside the Department of Geography. Ancillary modules must not exceed 0.5 units for each year (with the exception of Environmental Geography) and must be the same level as other Geography modules and relate to the degree programme. All ancillary modules are subject to final approval from the Departmental Tutor.

Given that the Geography and Economics degree is a combined-studies degree and students are expected to reach a certain level of competence in both Economics and Geography, Economic:Geography sutdents are not permitted to take modules outside Economics or Geography.  If non-UCL modules are selected a convincing case must be made in writing to the Geography combined-studies degree tutor by the end of the preceding academic year.