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BSc (Hons)

Geography (Physical)

Iceland Field Trip
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20
In the UK for Geography and environmental studies
in The Guardian University Guide 2020
  • UCAS code(s): F840 / F841
  • Level(s) of study: Undergraduate
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Sandwich
  • Location: Brackenhurst Campus
  • Starting: September 2020
  • Course duration: 3 / 4 year(s)
  • Entry requirements: More information

This course explores a range geographical issues important to the physical environment. You'll develop an understanding of the landscape around us, both in the UK and internationally.

More specialised than the BSc (Hons) Geography route, you will focus on environmental issues, including scientific knowledge of the Earth's surface, its spatial variation and its evolution over time.

Study Geography at NTU and you can split your time between our stunning, rural Brackenhurst Campus and the vibrant city of Nottingham, and explore a subject that is crucially important to today's world.

Why choose this course?

  • Get the best of both worlds! Immerse yourself in the subject in our stunning outdoor classroom at Brackenhurst, but still be completely connected to student life and all the events, entertainment, clubs and societies that Nottingham and NTU have to offer.
  • 100% of students on the full-time route were satisfied with their course (National Student Survey, 2018)
  • Learn from our experienced teaching staff who have expertise in a wide range of specialist areas including glaciology, natural hazards and water quality testing.
  • Experience the mixed habitats of wetland, woodland, streams and farmland all on our very own Brackenhurst Campus to support your study of natural geographical systems.
  • Use modern GPS equipment and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software to develop your surveying skills in the field and in campus computing suites.
  • Undertake fieldwork in the UK, south-east Spain and Tenerife.
  • Benefit from our strong links with employers and academic institutions by completing a year-long work placement.
  • Take advantage of subsidised field trips as part of your course fee.
  • This programme has been accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).

Accredited by:

RGS accreditation logo
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Field trip to Iceland
Find out more about the field trip to Iceland offered through the SPUR programme

What you'll study

This course has been designed for anyone interested in the physical and social processes that surround us. More specialised than the BSc (Hons) Geography route, you will focus on environmental issues, including scientific knowledge of the Earth's surface, it's spatial variation and its evolution over time. However, you will still cover broader issues, including climate change, globalisation and international security, ensuring you graduate with the skills and knowledge needed for a successful career in a variety of fields.

Other areas of the programme include:

  • land use
  • water resources
  • fieldwork
  • surveying
  • natural resource management
  • relevant ethical and legal issues.

These are all matters of public concern where geographers make a significant contribution to understanding and policy development.

  • Year One

    Earth Surface Processes and Landforms

    Learn about the Earth’s surface systems and processes, and develop your understanding of how the physical landscape is shaped.

    Geographical Fieldwork

    Develop problem-solving skills in a range of issues in human and physical geography. Gain an awareness of different environments, both locally and overseas. Fieldwork is currently undertaken in the province of Almería, south-east Spain.

    Skills for Geographers

    Develop an understanding of the range of skills required in geography, such as geographical data collection, data analysis, and report writing.

    Geographies of Global Change

    Explore the geopolitical and cultural framework in which the world moves today, and investigate trends, transactions and patterns in environmental governance. Topics include globalisation, the geography of trading, and the changing status of women in the global economy.

    Introduction to Global Environmental Issues

    Study contemporary global environmental issues and their underlying causes, including how humans impact the environment and how the natural environment impacts human society.

    Landscapes and Land Use

    Relate landscape evolution to the influences of human activity past, present and future. You’ll examine the value, opinions and policy aims of different stakeholders in the countryside, and look at contemporary issues that may affect rural and urban areas.

  • Year Two

    Environmental Hazards and Disasters

    Study natural and human-induced events that may directly threaten human life and economic wellbeing. Assess the actions needed to reduce disaster potential and to manage the aftermath of hazards.

    Fluvial Geomorphology and River Management

    Learn about the physical basis of landform development in fluvial environments. Examine the role of rivers, including the transport and storage of water and sediment.

    Quaternary Environments (Fieldwork)

    Explore the climatic and environmental changes that have taken place during the Quaternary Period (the last c. 2.6 million years of Earth’s recent history) with fieldwork in north Wales.

    Living with Climate Change

    Study the science of climate change, consider the ethical conflict, analyse political arguments, and apply reasoning to the resolution of this pressing environmental problem.

    Principles and Practice in Geography

    You’ll use a number of case studies – including a local one you’ll conduct yourself – to become familiar with, and learn the key approaches and issues associated with, practising geography

    Geographical Information Systems and Spatial Analysis

    Study the mapping and analytical techniques used in geographical information systems (GIS). Explore the applications of technology across a wide range of topic areas.

  • Year Three

    Placement year for students on the four-year course.

  • Final year

    Geographical Politics, Issues and Ethics

    Through fieldwork in Tenerife, you’ll explore issues in, and the perceptions of, environment and society. This will allow you to systematically identify and evaluate the philosophies influencing geography.

    Glaciology and Glacial Geomorphology

    Study the physical basis of landform development in glacial and former glacial environments. Topics include glacial thermal regime, glacial motion and erosion, and the development of glacial landforms.

    Dissertation

    Undertake independent research under supervision. Focus on your own area of interest within Geography.

    Example optional modules (choose two of the following):

    Applied Hydrology and Water Resources

    Study the process by which water and solutes move through a drainage basin, alongside basin management, land use management, and water quality issues. You’ll also look at sustainable drainage basin management for supplying drinking water, covering current national and international concerns in water resources.

    Natural Resource Management

    Throughout this module, you’ll study the exploitation of natural resources in a range of environments. You’ll also explore both the scientific principles and political, economic and social structures needed to explore the management of natural resources.

    Drylands

    Drylands embrace a number of environments, ranging from sandy deserts to temperate grasslands and savannas. This module explains why the myth that drylands are empty, barren places with little economic value is flawed, and explores their global socio-economic importance.

    Applications of Remote Sensing

    This module will build on your knowledge of managing geographical information learnt in your first and second year. You’ll learn how to process, analyse and interpret information from a range of existing remote sensing techniques. You'll also obtain information for mapping and spatial analysis using data from both historical and the very latest high resolution sensors.

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

96% of students agreed the staff are good at explaining things (School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences, National Student Survey 2020)

How you’re taught

You will be taught through a variety of methods including group seminars, lectures and practical sessions.

Covid-19 Planning

We will be adopting a range of blended teaching and learning techniques including online and face-to-face (where practical) to ensure that students can meet their learning outcomes in full. We will respond proactively to any national or local policy changes (including lock down) to ensure student safety as our primary concern whilst continuing to focus on offering a comprehensive student academic experience and will work flexibly with our students to ensure they are not disadvantaged by Covid 19.

Assessment methods

  • Year 1 coursework (67%), written (33%) and practical (0%).
  • Year 2 coursework (67%), written (33%) and practical (0%).
  • Year 3 coursework (67%), written (33%) and practical (0%).

Contact hours

A full-time student on average can expect to spend 1200 hours a year learning which will typically be broken down as follows:

  • Year 1 lectures/seminars/workshops (26%), independent study (74%) and placements (0%).
  • Year 2 lectures/seminars/workshops (26%), independent study (74%) and placements (0%).
  • Year 3 lectures/seminars/workshops (20%), independent study (80%) and placements (0%).

A placement year may be taken between year 2 and year 3 of study.

Our geography courses include opportunities to go on residential field trips, both in the UK and overseas. Currently, these include visits to south-east Spain and Tenerife.

Careers and employability

Your future career

You can use this degree to make a significant contribution to issues of public concern. Our graduates have gone on to work for:

  • local or national government bodies
  • environment agencies and consultancies
  • water companies
  • insurance and other private companies concerned with the environment.

Your Geography degree can also lead to a career in teaching, or further specialist postgraduate study.

Placement opportunities

Included within the BSc (Hons) Geography (Physical) course is your chance to complete an optional placement of at least 38 weeks in industry. This can lead to a Certificate or Diploma in Professional Studies, helping you to stand out in the graduate job market.

These placements enable you to gain additional skills and vital experience in a working environment and are highly valued by employers.

Previous students like you on this course have undertaken paid placements with organisations including:

  • The Environment Agency
  • Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
  • Wildlife Trusts.

This course is accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).

100% of students agreed they had course-related resources when they needed them (BSc (Hons) Geography (Physical), National Student Survey 2020)

Entry requirements

What are we looking for?

  • A-levels – BBB, including Geography or a relevant Science subject
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DDM including relevant modules; or
  • 120 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications, including an A-level equivalent in Geography or a relevant Science subject; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths grade C / 4.

Relevant science subjects include: Environmental Studies, Environmental Science, Geology, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics. We will also accept History.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations. Please see our website or UCAS Course Search for more details.

If you are unsure whether the qualifications you have, or are currently studying for, meet the minimum entry requirements for this course, please contact us before submitting an application through UCAS.

The UCAS Tariff

We've created a UCAS Tariff calculator to help you work out how many UCAS points your qualifications relate to.

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

NTU may admit a student with advanced standing beyond the beginning of a course, through an assessment of that student's prior learning, whether it is certificated or uncertificated. Our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy outlines the process and options available to these prospective students, such as recognising experiential learning or transferring to a similar course at another institution, otherwise known as credit transfer.

All prospective students who wish to apply via Recognition of Prior Learning should initially contact the central Admissions and Enquiries Team who will be able to support you through the process.

What are we looking for?

We accept qualifications from schools, colleges and universities all over the world for entry onto our courses. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

Foundation courses

If you need to do a foundation course to meet our course requirements please visit Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC). If you’re already studying in the UK at a school or college and would like to know if we can accept your qualification please visit our foundation courses page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please email our International Team for advice.

NTU may admit a student with advanced standing beyond the beginning of a course, through an assessment of that student's prior learning, whether it is certificated or uncertificated. Our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy outlines the process and options available to these prospective students, such as recognising experiential learning or transferring to a similar course at another institution, otherwise known as credit transfer.

All prospective students who wish to apply via Recognition of Prior Learning should initially contact the central Admissions and Enquiries Team who will be able to support you through the process.

How to apply

Ready to join us? Then apply as soon as you can. Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow the instructions for applying. Make sure you check the entry requirements above carefully before you do.

Writing your application and personal statement

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. So include all of your qualifications and grades, including resits or predicted grades.

Your personal statement is a really important part of your application. It’s your chance to convince us why we should offer you a place! You’ve got 4,000 characters to impress us. Make sure you use them to show how your skills and qualities are relevant to the course(s) you’re applying for. For more hints and tips, take a look at our page on how to write a good personal statement.

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU on our Your Application page. Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

You can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year. If you are applying to more than one UK university you must apply through UCAS.

Apply as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies. If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

Apply now

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Fees and funding

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there’s no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding pages will answer all your questions.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service.

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

Additional costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

Library books

Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

Field trips

You will be charged a maximum of £60 for any compulsory residential trips in the UK, and a maximum of £300 for compulsory overseas residential field courses, as a contribution towards travel, accommodation and entrance fees where applicable. Non-residential day excursions are included in the tuition fee and other non-compulsory opportunities, in the UK and abroad, may also be offered, and these will be charged at full cost to students. A valid passport and any associated visas will also be required for field trips outside of the UK.

Placements

If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.

Print and copy costs

The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Other costs

All students will also be expected to provide their own appropriate fieldwork clothing, including walking boots (with ankle support), wellingtons and waterproof trousers and coat.

International fees and scholarships

For information on international and EU fees and advice on how to pay, please visit our international fees page.

We offer prestigious scholarships to new international students holding offers to study at the University. For details and an application form please visit our international scholarships information.

Additional costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

Library books

Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

Field trips

You will be charged a maximum of £60 for any compulsory residential trips in the UK, and a maximum of £300 for compulsory overseas residential field courses, as a contribution towards travel, accommodation and entrance fees where applicable. Non-residential day excursions are included in the tuition fee and other non-compulsory opportunities, in the UK and abroad, may also be offered, and these will be charged at full cost to students. A valid passport and any associated visas will also be required for field trips outside of the UK.

Placements

If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.

Print and copy costs

The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Other costs

All students will also be expected to provide their own appropriate fieldwork clothing, including walking boots (with ankle support), wellingtons and waterproof trousers and coat.

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418