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What is Geography?
Geography is the science of place and space. Geographers ask where things are located on the surface of the earth, why they are located where they are, how places differ from one another, and how people interact with the environment.
Bachelor of Science in Geography
The Bachelor of Science with a Major in Geography degree at PSU focuses on those elements of geography that are most critical in today's society: Environmental Geography Urban Planning & Community Development Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
View the Geography major Program Guide, Program Requirements, and Program Checksheet.
Environmental Geography: This concentrates on the interaction of people and the environment. It includes the study of the human dimensions of global change, the environmental impacts of development, and issues related to sustainability, environmental planning and management. Topics such as air pollution, global climate change, hazards and disasters, deforestation and water pollution are discussed in the context of how human activities impact on the physical environment and the nature and complexities of the driving forces behind them.
Urban Planning & Community Development: Planning is an applied science that involves decision-making about the future of the city and the location of its future activities. Community development is a rapidly growing field that is integrated with planning decisions, and focuses on locally-driven social and economic development at the community or neighborhood level. Both areas are now seen as critical for the sustaining and improvement of our living environments. Support courses include material on the geography of transportation, land use planning and the technological knowledge now required by people employed in the planning field, particularly GIS (Geographical Information Systems: see below).
Geographic Information Systems: Also known as GIS, this computer-based technological application combines data management, modeling and statistical analysis with the explanatory powers of maps, spatial distribution and digital display. It involves cutting-edge computer technology and advanced skills that are in high demand in many professions. GIS skills are highly desirable for many types of employment, including community planning, environmental planning and environmental management.
Follow the menu items on the left for information about Geography courses, faculty, students, and careers.
Minoring in Geography
A minor in Geography is very complementary to many different major degree programs. Marketing, business, history, foreign languages, family and consumer sciences, biology majors: these are only a few of those that would benefit from a Geography minor.
View the Geography minor Program Guide and Program Requirements.
Geographic Skills and Employment Opportunities
Our Geography majors acquire superior skills in critical thinking and analysis, dynamic communication skills and competence in computer skills and analysis in a number of software areas. We strive to keep you on the cutting edge of technology. These technological skills, critical thinking skills and the overall applied nature of a geography education provide you with abilities that are in demand at public and private agencies. You also gain the superior knowledge and training necessary for the pursuit of admission to graduate programs, if that is part of your career plan.
Careers in Geography and Planning include:
Urban Planner Crime Analyst Land Developer GIS Analyst Geographer for the CIA Economic Development Analyst Real Estate Planner Land-Use Analyst Cartographer Traffic Manager Demographer
Land Use Planner University Professor Geographer for the FBI Health Care Planning Park Ranger Surveyor Location Expert Market Research Analyst Travel Agent/Specialist Wildlife Manager International Business Representative
Geographer - U.S. Bureau of Census Geographer - U.S. Department of Agriculture Geographer - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Geographer - U.S. Economic Development Administration Environmental Impact Analyst Natural Resources Specialist Community Development Analyst Environmental Planner Market Researcher/Analyst Transportation Planner
To learn more about Geography: