B.A. in Geography

The Bachelor of Arts with a major in geography requires a minimum of 120 s.h., including at least 38-42 s.h. of work for the major. Credit required for the major depends on a student's choice of track. Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 2.00 in all courses for the major and in all UI courses for the major. They also must complete the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences General Education Program. Transfer students must earn a minimum of 15 s.h. for the major in residence at the University of Iowa. 

Geography majors may not earn the minor in geographic information science.

The major in geography is appropriate preparation for advanced training or careers in geographical and sustainability sciences.

Students choose one of three tracks in the major: environmental studies, geographic information science (GISci), or health and society. All students majoring in geography complete a common set of foundation courses in addition to the requirements for their choice of track.

Consistent with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences maximum semester hours rule, students may count a maximum of 56 s.h. earned in their major department toward graduation.

The B.A. with a major in geography requires the following work.

Course List
Code Title Hours
Common Requirements 17-22
Statistics Courses 3-4
Track Courses 15-19

Common Requirements

Students may not use a course to fulfill more than one major requirement.

Course List
Code Title Hours
One of these:  
GEOG:1010 Introduction to Human Geography 3
GEOG:1090 Globalization and Geographic Diversity 3
All of these:  
GEOG:1020 The Global Environment 3
GEOG:1021 The Global Environment Lab 1
GEOG:1050 Foundations of GIS 3
One of these:  
GEOG:1060 Geography of Asia: From Japan to Pakistan 3
GEOG:1070 Contemporary Environmental Issues 3
GEOG:1090 Globalization and Geographic Diversity (if not chosen above) 3
GEOG:2110/GHS:2110 Seven Billion and Counting: Introduction to Population Dynamics 3
GEOG:2130 World Cities 3
GEOG:2910 The Global Economy 3
GEOG:2950 Environmental Conservation 3
One of these (not required for GISci track students):  
GEOG:3340 Ecosystem Services: Human Dependence on Natural Systems 3
GEOG:3500 Introduction to Environmental Remote Sensing 3
GEOG:3520 GIS for Environmental Studies 3
GEOG:3540 Introduction to Geographic Visualization 3
GEOG:3560 Spatial Analyses of Wind Energy 3
GEOG:3570 Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR): Principles and Applications 3
GEOG:4010 Field Methods in Physical Geography 3
GEOG:4020 Field Methods: Mapping and Mobile Computing 3
GEOG:4150/GHS:4150 Health and Environment: GIS Applications 3
GEOG:4650 Simulation in Environmental Geography 3
GEOG:5129/CEE:5129/ECE:5129/IE:5129/ME:5129 Information Systems for Resource Management 3
One of these:  
GEOG:4030 Senior Project Seminar 3
GEOG:4995 Honors Thesis (must enroll for 3 s.h.) 3
One of these (at least 1 s.h. required):  
GEOG:3400 Iowa Environmental Policy in Practice 3
GEOG:3992 Undergraduate Research (including ICIGO or independent research) arr.
CCP:1201 Academic Internship 1-3

Senior Project Seminar (GEOG:4030) is offered only in spring semesters. Students who choose GEOG:4995 Honors Thesis must make arrangements with a faculty advisor.

The Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences is a participant in the University's internship program, which provides opportunities for students to participate in paid and unpaid activities related to their academic programs. The Pomerantz Career Center works with students to develop appropriate internships.

Statistics Courses

Students must earn a minimum of 3 s.h. in statistics by completing one of the following courses or a statistics course equivalent to or numbered above one of these.

Course List
Code Title Hours
GEOG:1065 Introduction to Spatial Analysis: Patterns and Processes 3
PSQF:4143/STAT:4143 Introduction to Statistical Methods 3
STAT:1020/PSQF:1020 Elementary Statistics and Inference 3
STAT:1030 Statistics for Business 4
STAT:2010 Statistical Methods and Computing 3
STAT:2020 Probability and Statistics for the Engineering and Physical Sciences 3
STAT:3510/IGPI:3510 Biostatistics 3


Track Requirements

In addition, all majors must complete one of the four programs of study described above under Health and Society, Environmental Studies, or Geographic Information Science (GISsci)  Students should pay close attention to prerequisites for the upper-level courses in each sequence so that they can develop and complete their programs in a timely fashion.

See also: