F802 Geography MSci Undergraduate 2017
|Mode of study||Full Time|
|Please also check Requirements and Admissions.|
|Telephone||+44 (0)191 334 1883|
In first year Physical Geography we introduce the range of our research specialisms and research methods, including residential fieldwork in Portugal. Elective modules in the second, third and fourth years progressively lead to material that is specialist and at the cutting-edge of research. The majority of modules in second, third and fourth year focus on physical geography and environmental topics, with others that cross the human/physical geography interface. In the second year, students may take one module from the Geography BA list (subject to timetable compatibility).
- Physical Geography
- Introduction to Geographical Research (BSc) – double module including residential fieldwork in Portugal
- Human Geography: Space and Place in a Changing World.
Choose two optional modules from:
- Understanding Earth’s Principles
- Environment and Society
- Geographies of Crisis
- Level One Module(s) offered by another department, subject to approval.
You develop further practical and scientific research skills and through your choice of modules may start to specialise in a number of themes that may continue in third year or choose a broader approach. These include modules that cross the human/physical geography interface.
- Scientific Research in Geography (includes compulsory residential fieldwork in the UK) – double module, and a pre-requisite for your Dissertation in third year
- Handling Spatial Data.
Choose three modules (the modules may vary from year to year but typical options include):
- Climate Change: Geographical Perspectives
- Environmental Processes and Governance
- Fluvial Systems
- Geochemistry of the Environment
- Glaciers and Glaciation
- Global Environmental Change
- Mountain Landscapes
- One Level Two module from the BA list or from another department (with permission and subject to timetable compatibility).
In the third year, students will undertake their own Research Project, supervised by a member of staff alongside a selection of modules that involve material at the cutting edge of contemporary research.
Compulsory module (40 credits):
- Dissertation (individual Research Project based on scientific methods) – double module.
Optional modules (80 credits from the following):
(the modules may vary from year to year but typical options include):
- Dynamic Mountain Environments (California fieldtrip)
- Environmental Processes and Change Alpine Landscapes and Processes (Switzerland fieldtrip)
- Field Research in Glacial Environments (Iceland fieldtrip)
- The Arctic (Norway fieldtrip)
- Remote Sensing: Science and Environmental Management
- Natural Hazards in a Vulnerable World.
- Oceans Past and Present
- Quaternary of Glaciated Regions
- River Dynamics
- Sea Level Change and Coastal Evolution.
- Antarctic Environments
- Geochemical Applications: Across Continents and Oceans
- Integrated Catchment Modelling for Catchment Management.
- Martian Landscapes
- Peatland Geomorphology & Management
- Waterworlds and Wellbeing.
This additional fourth year will provide an innovative, research-led programme of study which allows students to develop advanced knowledge and practical skills at the frontiers of physical geography. Building on the first three years of the undergraduate programme, the MSci (Geog) will allow students to design and manage innovative Research Projects in collaboration with academic staff as well as enhancing the suite of transferable skills to improve all-round employability.
- Communicating Science in Physical Geography
- Advanced Methods in Physical Geography
- Research Project.
Students choose one of the three following substantive modules (the modules may vary from year to year but typical options include):
- Advanced Catchment Science
- Glacial Geology and Geomorphology
- Practical Skills in Sea Level Science
- Erosion and Orogenesis.
You will have the opportunity to study abroad during second year where we have exchange programmes and this can be a rewarding experience that is highly valued by employers. The latest information is as follows:
University Partner links:
- National University of Singapore
- University of British Columbia
- Queen's University, Canada
- University of Otago, New Zealand.
To find out more about the modules available to students studying at Durham University please click here.
Please note: Current modules are indicative. Information for future academic years may change, for example, due to developments in the relevant academic field, or in light of student feedback.
Course Learning and Teaching
Students on this programme learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops, practical classes, tutorials, fieldwork, group projects, student presentations, and self-directed learning, such as research, reading, and writing. All of these are informed by the interplay between theory and practice: bringing the real world together with the scholarly world. Seminars, tutorials, and practical classes are much smaller groups than lectures, small enough to allow one-on-one interaction with a professor or lecturer. Practicals also allow hands-on experience of the work professional geographers perform. The same is true of fieldwork, which at Durham is subsidized (academic year 2015-16), and consists of engaging in geographical work in the field with members of academic staff. Students can also attend an extensive programme of research-focused seminars where staff and visiting scholars present their cutting edge research.
This emphasis on research-led small-group and practical teaching reflects a conscious choice to enhance the quality of the learning experience rather than the quantity of formal sessions. The degree programme is designed to feature fewer formal sessions and more independent research as students move from their first to their final year. Small-group teaching and one-on-one attention from the personal academic advisor (provided for all students when they enter the programme) are part of the learning experience throughout, but by the final two years, classroom time gives way, to some extent, to independent research, including a capstone dissertation—supported by one-on-one supervision—that makes up a third of the third year credits and then a further independent research project in the fourth year. In this way the degree programme systematically transforms the student from a consumer of knowledge in the classroom to a generator of knowledge, ready for professional or postgraduate life.
Subject requirements, level and grade
In addition to satisfying the University’s general entry requirements, please note:
- We welcome applications from those with other qualifications equivalent to our standard entry requirements and from mature students with non-standard qualifications or who may have had a break in their study
- One science subject is required at A-level or equivalent
- Geography is accepted as a science subject
- We do not include General Studies or Critical Thinking as part of our offer
- The standard offer for entry on to the BSc and MSci is AAA or equivalent. The Department does occasionally make offers that are less than AAA
- If you do not satisfy our general entry requirements, the Foundation Centre offers multidisciplinary degrees to prepare you for a range of specified degree courses.
- Please consult the University website for required evidence of English language proficiency
- We are pleased to consider applications for deferred entry.
Applicants taking Science A-levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This applies only to applicants sitting A-levels with an English examination board.
English Language requirements
Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.
How to apply
Information relevant to your country
Fees and Funding
Full Time Fees
|EU Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|Home Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|Island Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|International non-EU Student||£17,400.00 per year|
Note: Fees are subject to review and change in-line with inflation.
Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.
Scholarships and funding
Open days and visits
Pre-application open day
Pre-application open days are the best way to discover all you need to know about Durham University. With representatives from all relevant academic and support service departments, and opportunities to explore college options, the open days provide our prospective undergraduates with the full experience of Durham University.
Please see the following page for further details and information on how to book a place: www.durham.ac.uk/opendays
Discover Durham Tours
Overseas Visit Schedule
You will study some of the world’s major challenges.
Climate change, environmental governance, landslides, natural hazards, geopolitical conflict and territorial dispute, migration, sea level rise, energy poverty, flooding, debt, austerity, an urban century: these are just a few of the significant challenges that are confronting us today, and few departments are better placed than Durham Geography to study them. Our Department is one of the leading centres of geographical scholarship in the world.
Drawing on a breadth of internationally recognised expertise, we deliver degree programmes that enable you to study human activity and the physical environment as well as the interactions between them. We teach and research across the discipline from Antarctica to Bangladesh, from spatial theory to flood modelling, and from GIS to health and wellbeing. We endeavour to enthuse and stimulate you from the seminar room to the field site, stretching you to realise your intellectual potential.
Our aim is to sustain a world-class research, teaching and learning environment with high-quality laboratories and IT facilities in a supportive and collegiate atmosphere. As a result of this our graduates are eminently employable.
- Students on the BSc programme registered an overall satisfaction rate of 97% in the National Student Survey 2015 (4th highest among Russell Group Universities).
- Students on the BA programme registered an overall satisfaction rate of 93% in the National Student Survey 2015 (equal 5th highest among Russell Group Universities).
- 1st in The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2015.
- 2nd in The Complete University Guide 2016.
- 5th in the world in the individual subject tables in the QS World University Rankings® 2015–16.
- Durham Geography is among the top 4 Departments in the UK for employment prospects (The Telegraph 2015).
The Department is opposite the main Bill Bryson Library, conveniently situated between the older colleges in the vicinity of the Cathedral and the newer colleges on the gentle wooded slopes to the south. We are housed in our own building, which contains large lecture theatres, smaller teaching rooms, and is very well-equipped with computing facilities for remote sensing, data analysis and graphic display. There are also excellent facilities for satellite and automated cartography, and world-class laboratories for sediment analysis and palaeo-environmental studies. Indeed, all our laboratories have recently been refurbished with state-of-the-art equipment. In addition to the above, our meteorological observatory has one of the longest data sets in Britain.