Why study Geography at UNBC?

There are many good reasons to study Geography at UNBC, but here are four that stand out:

We put ideas to the test of practical experience.

So much of what is written in textbooks or policy documents looks one way on paper but appears as something different on the ground. Geographers are especially interested in understanding and explaining how things are situated in place and time as the result of the interaction of general and particular (i.e., contingent) processes.

We offer innovative and high-quality learning experiences.

The Geography Program at UNBC regularly offers Field Schools to intriguing places (e.g., Guatemala and South Africa). We recently offered a unique and highly successful Block Course Delivery Pilot in Human Geography that allowed students to take one course at a time in condensed three-week format, rather than five courses at a time spread out over 13 weeks. Students in Physical Geography learn in a wide variety of settings, including lecture and seminar rooms, dry labs, wet labs, and by capturing data out in the field, including such places as the Quesnel River Research Centre in Likely, BC.

Our faculty bring their internationally-recognized research and expertise to the classroom.

UNBC Geography places a high priority on faculty research. Our faculty are nationally and internationally recognized for research in things as diverse as glacial dynamics, critical development, remote sensing, Indigenous land rights, fluvial geomorphology, ecotourism, rural health care delivery, and community development.

This does not mean that we treat our programs of research as something separate from our undergraduate teaching. Instead, we bring the findings of our own work, as well as the latest developments in our respective fields, into our undergraduate courses. There are even opportunities in some senior-level undergraduate courses for students to undertake research of their own, under the supervision of expert faculty researchers.

We prepare our students to understand the world around them and to adapt and succeed in an ever-changing world.

Our curricula place a high priority in providing students with a wide set of skills they can apply in an ever-changing employment market. This includes analytical methods (e.g., GIS, statistics, qualitative inquiry, research design, field measurement techniques), oral and written communication skills, critical thinking, and time management.

Just as importantly, we prepare students to assemble and integrate a wide range of specialized expertise into practical knowledge that is of value to employers and clients. In an age where job titles and specializations can disappear in a flash, it is good to have a skill set that adapts well.