In this Master’s degree you will acquire conceptual ideas, theoretical approaches and analytical research skills needed to study social and cultural geography at postgraduate level. You will engage with questions that interrogate the foundations of inequality, the relationship between power and dissent, identity and belonging, race, gender, cultural change and conflict. Representations of cultural landscapes and critical cartographies are used to explore the geographical imagination of the world from local to global scales.
UK-focused and international case studies are used to illustrate critical, contemporary challenges, from understanding the dynamics of inequality in a city like London to the cultural processes underpinning the rise in populist politics and social movements across the world. To support the development of learning in areas that are of particular interest, you can choose option modules from a wide variety of subject areas such as urbanisation, culture and development, social anthropology, politics, religion and society.
In addition to core content, you will learn research methods that will enable you to specialise and undertake the researching and writing of a dissertation on a subject that appeals to you, as well as develop skills to conduct independent research in both academic and non-academic contexts.
At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.
Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading. Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.
Our distance-learning and blended-learning courses and modules are self-directed and we will provide you with interactive learning opportunities and encourage you to collaborate and engage via various learning technologies. These courses involve limited or no face-to-face contact between students and module tutors.
In addition, you will have access to pastoral support via a named Personal Tutor.
Teaching is via lectures, seminars, presentations and fieldwork.
On our taught courses, you will have scheduled teaching and study sessions each year. Alongside this, you will also undertake assessment activities and independent learning outside of class. Depending on the modules you take, you may also have additional scheduled academic activities, such as tutorials, dissertation supervision, practical classes, visits and fieldtrips.
On our taught courses, the actual amount of time you spend in the classroom and in contact with your lecturers will depend on your course, the option modules you select and when you undertake your final-year project.
On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, discussion, collaboration and interaction with your lecturers and fellow students are encouraged and enabled through various learning technologies, but you may have limited or no face-to-face contact with your module tutors.
Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to larger groups, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups led by a tutor.
On our taught courses, much of your time outside of class will be spent on self-directed, independent learning, including preparing for classes and following up afterwards. This will usually include, but is not limited to, reading books and journal articles, undertaking research, working on coursework and assignments, and preparing for presentations and assessments.
Independent learning is absolutely vital to your success as a student. Everyone is different, and the study time required varies topic by topic, but, as a guide, expect to schedule up to five hours of self-study for each hour of teaching.
On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, the emphasis is very much on independent, self-directed learning and you will be expected to manage your own learning, with the support of your module tutors and various learning technologies.
Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations, although this will vary from course to course - on some of our courses, assessment is entirely by coursework. The methods of assessment on this course are specified below under 'Methods of assessment on this course'. You will need to allow time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.
Where a course has unseen written examinations, these may be held termly, but, on the majority of our courses, exams are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June. Exams may be held at other times of the year as well. In most cases, exams are held during the day on a weekday - if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance - but some exams are held in the evening. Exam timetables are published online.
All assessment is by coursework. You also write a 15,000-word dissertation.
Cities are the vibrant and dynamic focal points of today’s society. These diverse agglomerations of people, companies and organisations are both locations for innovation and for conflict. Cities are regarded as creative places as well as conflictual places for divergent communities. In this Master's specialisation you will study how different actors influence the physical form of cities but also the way in which they present and understand the character and identity of cities and how they make use of the typical urban environment in their daily activities. They create and make cities.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/ucg
The requirements for admission include:
- a bachelor degree in Human Geography received from Radboud University or another relevant bachelor degree with at least 24 EC in conflict studies and/or political geography
- Having successfully completed a course in social scientific research methods is highly recommended and will increase your chance of getting selected for this specialisation
- excellent proficiency in English
- a letter of motivation
- two letters of recommendation
- list of your grades obtained during previous training
The Master's specialisation Urban and Cultural Geography prepares students for a professional career in government, semi-government, and business. It also provides a stepping stone towards a research career in academia or consultancy. You will be able to apply the scientific insights and the practical skills you have acquired to topics including the development and marketing of cities, multi-culturality and integration, innovative and creative urban milieus, urban identities, cultural industries.
This would qualify you for a whole range of different jobs. Some of you might find a job in a government agency, e.g. as city-manager, city marketeer, city planner, integration agent, city-network manager, PR- manager, etc. Others will end up in semi-government agencies such as development agencies, cultural planning agencies, but also research institutes, etc. Finally also private industry offers a number of opportunities for urban and cultural specialists. One might think of jobs such as event manager, museum director, city marketeer, consultant, journalist, innovation consultant, communication manager or media specialist.
See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/ucg
Tourism is based on the cultural appreciation and value of the cities and landscapes tourists visit. Tourism also has a major economic, social and environmental impact on places and regions. This Master's specialisation allows you to understand the processes involved and how to use them in practice. In this specialisation you will mainly learn to understand and interpret advanced theories and practices of leisure and tourism and their influence on the social and physical environment. Since tourism is mainly about experiencing places and events, you will learn to understand where these experiences come from, what effects they have and how they can be influenced.
Why study Cultural Geography and Tourism at Radboud University?
•Tourists travel to places which are different, attractive, challenging and special, and which provide them with a thrilling experience. Geographers study, how these experiences actually evolve, how they are created and produced, how these experiences differ from group to group and how places can be designed accordingly?
•Tourism also has a profound effect on places, on the local economy, on the culture of the people who live there and on the ecology and landscape. Also these aspects are of central interest for the scholars in this Master's specialisation. Finally, not just places are affected, but the movements, flows and related streams of people, goods, money, information, images, and traffic have an enormous effect on our global landscape, which we study in the framework of this Master's specialisation.
•This Master's specialisation is a concise and intensive one-year Master's programme preparing you as a full-fledged academic in this field and as such is unique in the Netherlands. Our Human Geography Master's programme, regularly ranks as the best Dutch master programme in this field in the Netherlands.
•This Master's specialisation has an international character, with students and lecturers from all over the world, and at the same time offers many opportunities to do research abroad or to gain professional experience abroad.
•Although the foundation of this specialisation is geographical, our approach to this theme is highly multidisciplinary to include related fields as cultural studies, psychology, anthropology, economics, spatial planning, environmental policy studies, etc..
•You’ll conduct your Master’s thesis research in the framework of a research internship at an organisation active in a field related to tourism. This will give you a taste of professional life in the field and enhance your chances on the job market.
•You’ll also benefit from the advantages of the Master’s programme in Human Geography in general.
The Master of Science in Geography is a two-year advanced study programme jointly organised by KU Leuven and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). The interuniversity master programme provides the students with comprehensive training in geography's approaches to social geographical and/or natural geographical phenomena. The objective of this programme is to provide a deeper understanding of geographical problems and methods, knowledge to the theoretical debate within the discipline, and training in the use of geographical working techniques.
The global aim of the master is to generate geographers that can play an active role in our contemporary society. Teaching is based on scientific research. Therefore the KU Leuven and the VUB work together for their master in geography, since their focal points of research are similar. The following specialties are offered in English:
This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.
The full programme comprises 120 ECTS. In addition to core courses on human-environment interactions and research methods in geography (27 ECTS), you take the compulsory courses within your chosen specialisation (33-34 ECTS) as well as a number of specialised electives in your field (29-30 ECTS). The remaining 30 ECTS are allocated to the master’s thesis.
The programme offers three specialisations:
Within this specialisation you can also opt to include a two-month GIS internship in your study programme.
Courses are taught at KU Leuven’s Arenberg Campus in Heverlee and at the VUB campus in Etterbeek. A joint degree will be awarded upon the successful completion of the programme.
This highly competitive programme is jointly offered by the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at KU Leuven and the Department of Geography at VUB and is firmly rooted in current research at both universities. Both departments continuously develop and maintain innovative and internationally recognised research programmes on fundamental and applied aspects of the geosciences, covering a wide range of spatial and temporal scales. Within the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at KU Leuven, geographical research activities are focused on earth surface processes and climate, human-environment interactions, society and space, tourism, and education in the geosciences. Research in the Department of Geography at VUB is focused on the dynamics of glacial systems, the study of hazardous geomorphological and volcanological processes, small-scale cartography and map projections, remote sensing, and the geography of world cities.
The Master of Geography aims to gain the analytical and synthetical ability, necessary to understand independently and critically the scientific and social aspects of the environmental problems in our country, in a European dimension and on global level. It aims to enable the student to approach the relation between society and environment in an integrated way. The student will learn to overview and to function within the realm of the geographer. This is possible in the area of fundamental and applied geographical research, as well as in the area of communication and education of geographical sciences.
In the master thesis the research activities are emphasized, next to the acquiring of knowledge and abilities on an advanced level.
The global aim of the master is to produce geographers that can play an active role in our current society. Teaching is based on scientific research. To be able to realize this the KU Leuven and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel work together for their Master of Geography, since their focusses of research are similar. The following specialties are offered in English:
Geographers study the interaction between human societies and their environments, characterize the regions and localities that result, and analyze the spatial distributions and processes of particular natural and human phenomena. Being equally a natural science and a social science equipped with geographical information science techniques, geography integrates the physical and human environments. Thus, geographers have long applied integrated multidisciplinary approaches to solve real-world problems at all spatial scales from local to global.
Undoubtely there exists a growing demand for competent professionals in the broad field of geo-sciences. As a graduate from the interuniversity master programme geography, you may be recruited by surveying companies, mapping agencies, service and utility providers and public entities. You will also be placed high on the recruitment list of international and national administrations dealing with urban and rural land use planning, disaster management, environmental conservation and management. Careers can also be perused in research and education, whereby this Master programme is most often complemented by a relevant PhD programme.
If you are interested in theoretical and empirical developments in cultural geography, this course will help you understand the cultural landscapes of rural and urban environments throughout the world.
You will explore key themes in cultural and historical geography, connecting theory and practice with disciplines throughout the humanities and social sciences.
This course is recognised by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as providing training appropriate for PhD research.
Academic English preparation and support
If you require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you may be able to attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education, which is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK.
Students who successfully complete the presessional course to the required level can progress to postgraduate study without retaking IELTS or equivalent. You could be eligible for a joint offer, which means you will only need to apply for your visa once.
This course comprises 120 credits of core and optional modules, plus a 60-credit dissertation. You will be allocated an appropriate dissertation supervisor who will oversee your progress.
You can choose from geography modules or options from other schools/departments across the University, subject to approval.
The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.
Recent graduates have gone on to pursue fully-funded postgraduate research and successful academic careers. Others are working in the creative industries, or public and voluntary sectors.
Employability and average starting salary
100% of postgraduates from the School of Geography who were available for employment secured work or further study within six months of graduation. £25,721 was the average starting salary, with the highest being £29,847.*
* Known destinations of full-time home postgraduates 2015/16. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.
Career and professional development
Whether you are looking to enhance your career prospects or develop your knowledge, a postgraduate degree from the University of Nottingham can help take you where you want to be.
Our award-winning Careers and Employability Service offers specialist support and guidance while you study and for life after you graduate. They will help you explore and plan your next career move, through regular events, employer-led skills sessions, placement opportunitiesand one-to-one discussions.