Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Geography

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Attendance

Full-time

Part-time

With placement

Course

Three year

Six year

Four year

Next enrolment

September 2021

Introduction

In a nutshell

Mitigating the effects of climate change is vital to the survival of the human and natural world. With our BSc Geography degree, you can build an understanding of the processes that shape the natural environment and how they affect our planet - delivered in a dynamic and engaging way.

Accredited, engaging learning

Accredited by the Royal Geographical Society, our course is designed to immerse you in physical geography. Across a range of carefully-designed modules packed with real-world relevance, you will explore the ecological impact of changes in our natural world. Led by research-active practitioners, you'll learn about climate change and its effect on people and places. You'll explore glaciers and global water resources. You'll examine fluvial processes, river restoration and management strategies.

Out in the field

Fieldwork is at the heart of your learning. We've aligned trips with specialist modules, so you develop applied skills and gain practical experiences that reinforce your knowledge. Typical destinations include the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales, Sheffield and Liverpool. You'll also experience residential field courses across the UK and other international locations -  a recent trip took us to Scandinavia. You can also include a placement to boost your real-world experience.

Career-focused approach

With a focus on your future career, we'll nurture you to critically evaluate policy and research, and be confident with computer-based mapping and modelling using Geographical Information Systems and Science (GIS) and remote sensing techniques. You'll also experience small group teaching and support from our friendly, accessible academic team, who will include you in exciting environmental research projects at Salford.

You will:
  • Learn about climate change, glaciers, fluvial processes and river restoration and how they impact on people and the environment
  • Gain real-world, hands-on experience as you participate in fieldwork trips
  • Build a strong skillset as you benefit from a small group teaching approach
Placement

options available

International

students accepted

Course accreditations
Royal Geographical Society accreditation logo

This is for you if...

1.

You're passionate about the world around you and want a degree with fieldwork

2.

You're swayed towards the more physical and scientific aspects of geography

3.

You want to develop practical and technical skills opportunity and experience a broad range of field trips

Course details

All about the course

  • During the first year, you'll follow a structured suite of modules, carefully designed to increase your subject knowledge, develop your confidence and prepare you for the next level. Themes covered include fluvial and glacial processes, earth surface processes, sustainability and the effects of climate change in our natural world.
  • In years two and three, you can choose to specialise in areas of physical geography, or pick modules from across the whole geography spectrum. 

Fieldwork is a key element of this course and trips are aligned with the specialist modules to develop applied skills and gain practical experience. Residential field trips take place in the UK and the European Alps. Typical day trip destinations include the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales, and cities such as Sheffield and Liverpool. 

Small group teaching is another key course benefit, and there are strong links between course content and University research projects. Study and IT skills are embedded throughout the course, with a focus on managing field data and using Geographical Information Systems and Science (GIS) for environmental mapping and modelling.

Industry Placements

On this course, you'll have the option to take an industry placement year between years two and three. Although you'll be responsible for securing your placement, a tutor will support you, monitor your progress and assess your final placement report.

Year one

Academic Tutorial

The module develops your academic skills and helps you develop your personal and professional skills for study and for work. You will work on a range of geographical/environmental management problems linked to the core first year modules. Academic Tutorials module comprise lecture\workshop sessions and a weekly one hour tutorial with a member of academic staff in groups of between six and eight. The tutorials involve discussion, debate, and problem-solving, and provide you with a regular forum for monitoring your progress through your first year.

Sustainability and Environment

You will examine sustainability at local, national and global scales and explore a range of case studies. Sustainability is a concept that cuts across disciplines and provides a framework for managing environmental issues. Project work will allow you apply your knowledge of the principles of sustainable development to assess and classify real-world problems and suggest solutions.

Earth Surface Processes

An introduction to the physical processes operating across the geosphere and biosphere to provide a solid basis to understand their influence on the landscape and ecosystems. The module looks at the inter-relationships between both environmental and ecological processes with a focus on the impact on human activity. Case studies explore key concepts such as climate change, geohazards and biodiversity.

People, Place and Space

This module examines the role of people in shaping the human environment and focuses on key concepts such as place, power, scale and networks. You will learn about how the shape and form of cities is influenced by social and political issues, and how new technologies are changing the nature of human interactions in cities, states and across the world.

Environmental Resources

Environmental resources include food, energy and water. Spatial and temporal variation in the availability of these resources is arguably the most important issue for society in the twenty first century. This module introduces energy, water, minerals, and food resources as fundamental topics in environmental resources management and examines current problems related to climate change, food security, water availability and pollution. You will explore these themes through a combination of case study work, site visits, and field and laboratory work.

Applied Skills and Field Course

The Applied skills and fieldwork module provides lectures and associated practical activities (in trimester 1) to identify and source data, describe, and utilise environmental statistics to develop writing and analytical skills associated with spatial and temporal variations in real world data.

In Trimester 2 lectures investigate the role of qualitative research methods and build background detail before the residential field course takes place. Post field course sessions provide opportunities for feedback, questions and guidance before the final assessment. This module introduces water, glaciers, climate change and a mixed methods approach to both desk and field based activities. You will explore these themes through a combination of lectures, practical computer lab sessions and field work. 

Year two

Geographical Information Systems and Science

This module introduces you to the theory and practical implementation of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to solve environmental and geographical problems. The module will explore the principles relating to how we represent the world inside a computer, before looking at the analytical methods that can be applied to solve spatial problems. You will learn how to be a critical user and how to design and implement solutions using industry standard GIS software. Part of the module is delivered in conjunction with industry partners.

Research in Action

This module equips you with the range of research skills relevant for further study and the workplace and prepares you for your Dissertation in final year. You will learn about the research process, the nature of scientific writing, research design, risk assessment and ethical considerations, and how to write a research proposal. You will gain experience of international fieldwork in an environment relevant to thematic areas being studied. The work is supported by six, small-group tutorials with a member of academic staff.

Choose one option from

Applied Environmental Skills (Geography)

This module will provide you with the opportunity to critically evaluate applied environmental science concepts, practical methodologies and complex scientific issues using a range of primary and secondary information sources.      

Fluvial and Glacial Systems

This module introduces the concepts and theories that underpin fluvial and glacial systems including hill slope processes, fluvial network development and glacial teleconnections. You will explore the stability characteristics of fluvial systems in UK-based fieldwork and the hydrological and geochemical properties of rivers in Alpine environments. The learning will draw on case studies from AquaUoS the schools Environmental Consultancy to enable you to explore the relationships between regulatory frameworks, topography, environmental constraints, and sustainable river decision-making. Key agencies, such as River Trusts and the Environment Agency, will also play a role in delivery, providing students with a flavour of employment opportunities in the sector.

Environmental Protection

This module develops an understanding of planning and regulatory frameworks and their role in achieving environmental sustainability. You will learn through a combination of lectures, workshops, field and laboratory work. The learning will draw on case studies from the fields of planning, contaminated land, and noise regulation to enable you to explore the relationships between regulatory frameworks, environmental standards, and sustainable development decision-making. Key agencies, such as ARUP, Jacobs and others, will also play a role in delivery, providing students with a flavour of employment opportunities in the sector.

University Wide Language

Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Plus choose one option from

Economic Geography

In this module you will examine the connections between the global economy, and society and environment, in the developed and developing worlds. The scale of study is from local to global and the work involves coursework based on a 'dragon's den' activity where you will work on a project in a group, and the pitch and report your findings to a panel of experts.

Monitoring Environmental Change

Monitoring Environmental Change explores the concepts and provides the practical experience of contemporary techniques for environmental monitoring of human impacts in a range of environments. The module provides necessary skills and techniques to undertake field work in selected environments, generate data and explore its analysis and interpretation.

University Wide Language

Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

And one option from

New

Educational Principles and Practice in STEM

The module will provide you with an introduction to teaching and learning at key stage 4 (level 2 GCSE qualifications) through the application of core educational concepts. You will design and deliver an educational activity for a laboratory, workshop or through an online interactive system. The module will provide a taster for students considering teaching as a career.

Consultancy Project (BSc)

This innovative module supports the development of personal and professional skills. You will carry out a group-based project for an external client and learn about teamwork, project planning and time management. You will work with an academic advisor to write a project plan, allocate tasks to the team, carry out an investigation, and report the results to a client.

Year three

Dissertation (40 credits)

You will undertake independent research guided by the literature relevant to your chosen field of study, to deploy techniques of analysis and enquiry within the discipline. Provided by the practical skills you will be supported by an academic supervisor to design and execute a dissertation project with an understanding of the roles of ethics and risk assessment.

Choose two options from

Environmental Remote Sensing

This module will explore the principles and applications of remotely sensed data with an emphasis on terrestrial applications and optical remote sensing systems. You will learn about the use of satellite and aircraft sensor data to solve environmental problems. You will carry out a real-world, group-based, problem-driven project for a client using remotely sensed imagery.

Development and Global Challenges

In the first part of the module, we will critically engage with the evolution of development theories and approaches, and their relationship with wider global phenomena such as colonialism and globalization. In the second part, we will understand the concept of Sustainable Development and investigate a range of global challenges such as food security, poverty, inequality, migration, energy security and climate change. The module will draw upon a range of diverse case studies from the global south and the global north and will allow students to focus more in depth in the study of one of the indicated global challenges.  

Modelling Environmental Systems

This module will give you an introduction in the role and implementation of models to solve environmental problems. Environmental modelling is an important tool across policy and decision making in fields such as conservation, wildlife management, biodiversity and climate change.  The module consists of a combination of lectures and computer practicals where you will get hands on experience of different types of models and how they are used to inform environmental decision making. The module is focused on the use of models rather than on mathematical or technical aspects of model development, and so will benefit anyone interested in the rapidly increasing role of models in environmental policy.

Mitigating Climate Change

You will develop a detailed understanding of the scientific principles underlying how changing climate has an effect on the natural world, urban environments and society. Through this knowledge you will be able to appreciate the implications of climate change on biodiversity, ecosystems and society, and identify what adaptions can be made to mitigate climate change.

University Wide Language

Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Plus two options from

River Restoration and Management

You will learn about the relationships between fluvial processes, and river restoration and management strategies. Underpinning theory on river hydromorphology, fluvial geomorphology, and sediment processes provides a sound basis for evaluating the success of different river engineering strategies. Field work in UK rivers provides practical experience of the impacts of river management, and an appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches.

Sustainable Cities

Overall, Sustainable Cities is a broad module covering a wide variety of topics, allowing you to focus on elements relevant to your specific field of study. This module will engage with a host of ideas and concepts, from urban agriculture, which involves farming in cities, to methods for greening cities and the role of key actors in managing these spaces. Semester two focuses on the rise of megacities, with a specific focus on the social and environmental issues present in such complex environments; it builds on the themes from semester one and enables you to focus on a topic which is of interest to you.

Environmental Decision Making Systems

This module examines the role of decision-making in the management of natural resources and ecosystem services. You will investigate the role of environmental modelling in supporting environmental decision-making and assess the effectiveness of decision-making tools including Environmental Impact Assessment, hazard and risk analysis, and life-cycle analysis.

Environment and Wellbeing

This module explores the relationships between human health and environment and the epidemiology and geographical distribution of disease. You will assess the availability and accessibility of health services and their influence on well-being in communities and explore the principles and techniques for health promotion. The module is set in the context of the impacts that environmental factors (including socio-economic factors) have on health and wellbeing.

University Wide Language

Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?

TEACHING

Teaching is through a combination of methods. These include:

  • Lectures
  • Fieldwork
  • Tutorials
  • Practical classes
  • Computer based learning
  • Assignments
  • Project work

ASSESSMENT

Assessments will be based on a combination of examinations and continuous assessment. This will include:

  • Field reports
  • Reflective diaries
  • Essays
  • Problem-solving exercises
  • Data analysis
  • Seminars
  • Research projects

Assessments will involve a mixture of group and individual work.

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Rising to the challenge of a changing world, our degree courses are designed to shape the next generation of urbanists, scientists, engineers and industry leaders. 

Driven by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the knowledge and skills to become unstoppable in your career.

Facilities

 

You will experience a modern learning environment, enriched with accessible lecture theatres and AV-equipped classrooms, computing suites and multimedia libraries, with access to industry journals, databases, and simulation software. 

As a geography student, you will have access to our state-of-the-art, integrated teaching laboratory known as the Bodmer Lab. The Bodmer Lab is a specialist, purpose-built facility and ensures our students benefit from the latest technologies to support their learning and remain on the cutting edge of innovation and discovery.

 

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

EMPLOYMENT

The course is designed to help you to develop a range of personal and professional skills which will make you highly-employable. These include report writing and presentation skills, data interpretation and IT skills and team work and project management skills.

There is growing demand for professionals with environment-based skills. A wide range of organisations need skilled professional to help them to comply with legislation and conform to standards. Many environment-focused not-for-profit organisations are also increasing the range of roles to help tackle the impact of climate change.

Geography graduates typically secure roles with environmental consultancies, utility companies, and not-for profit organisations. Global interest in the natural world often takes many overseas. Some graduates have chosen to share their knowledge through education and teaching. A growing number are also choosing to progress their subject knowledge through postgraduate studies in a geographical discipline.

FURTHER STUDY

You might find you want to learn more about geography and the environment through further study. We offer a range of environment-focused postgraduate courses where you can build specialist knowledge and take your subject interest even further. Salford graduates and alumni also receive a significant fees discount. 

MSc Sustainability

MSc Environmental Assessment and Management

 

 

A taste of what you could become

a cartographer

a Surveyor

an Environmental consultant

a Planning surveyor

a Town planner

and more...

Career Links

This course includes modules that allow you to work with external agencies including companies, research organisations and voluntary groups. Specific modules where you will work directly with external organisation are the Consultancy Project in the second year, where you work exclusively with real world organisations to solve real world problems; the GIS modules in the second and third year, where you will work with an international company involved in providing digital mapping; and the River Restoration and Management module, where you will work with a range of external agencies and consultancies on real world projects.

 

    Requirements

    What you need to know

    APPLICANT PROFILE

    We welcome those coming from school or college, with or without an A level in geography but with interests in geography and a passion for fieldwork. We also welcome those returning to education, either via Access qualifications or by taking the foundation year route.

    ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

    All of our courses are taught and assessed in English. If English is not your first language, you must meet our minimum English language entry requirements. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this, and we also accept a range of equivalent qualifications.  

    Read more about our English language requirements, including information about pathways that can help you gain entry on to our degree courses. 

    Standard entry requirements

    GCSE

    English language and mathematics at grade C or 4 or above. Equivalents are accepted.

    You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below

    UCAS tariff points

    104 - 112 UCAS points - Geography preferred but not essential.

    A level

    104 - 112 UCAS points - Geography preferred but not essential.

    BTEC National Diploma

    DMM - Geography preferred but not essential.

    BTEC Higher National Diploma

    Possible entry to year three

    Foundation Degree

    Possible entry to year three

    Access to HE

    104 - 112 UCAS points from QAA approved Access to HE Diploma

    Scottish Highers

    104 - 112 UCAS points from Higher Level. Geography preferred but not essential.

    Irish Leaving Certificate

    104 - 112 UCAS points from Higher Level. Geography preferred but not essential.

    European Baccalaureate

    Pass in Diploma of at least 60% including at least one science subject

    International Baccalaureate

    30 points. Geography preferred but not essential.

    Alternative entry requirements

    Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

    We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

    There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

    How much?

    Type of study Year Fees
    Full-time home 2021/22 £9,250per year
    Full-time international 2021/22 £15,600per year
    Part-time 2021/22 Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying.
    Full-time home 2022/23 £9,250per year
    Full-time international 2022/23 £15900per year
    Part-time 2022/23 Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying
    Additional costs

    All field trips are funded by the school but you may need to consider additional costs such as food and spending money. 

    International field trips that are part of core modules are also funded by the school but you will need to pay towards international field trips that are part of optional modules (although these are subsidised by the school) and you will be made aware of these costs before selecting the module. 

    You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

    Scholarships for international students

    If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our scholarships.
     
    We have a range of scholarships available for students applying for courses in 2020-2021 and 2021-2022. Our Global Gold Excellence Scholarship is worth £3,500 and our Global Silver Excellence Scholarship is worth £3,000 - both are available for students studying in our 2021/22 intakes.

    We also offer the Salford International Excellence Scholarship which offers up to £5,000 discount on tuition fees. As this is a prestigious award we have a limited number of these scholarships available.

    See the full range of our International Scholarships.

    Apply now

    All Set? Let's Apply?

    Enrolment dates

    September 2021

    September 2022

    UCAS information

    Course ID F800

    Institution S03

    Interested in starting university in September 2022? Book your place on our next Open Day.