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Geography

Department of Geography, Geology and Planning 


For More Information

Geography Program Coordinator

Missouri State University
901 South National Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65897
Office: 417-836-5800
Fax: 417-836-6006
Email: Geography@missouristate.edu
http://www.geosciences.missouristate.edu/

Career Preparation

Numerous professions are open to graduates who have completed a four-year bachelor’s degree in Geography. Five major areas of potential employment include business, government, planning, cartography and teaching, offering a wide range of job possibilities.

Geographers pursue careers in business as specialists in environmental consulting, transportation, marketing or location analysis. Others use special geographical training to pursue careers in the travel industry. More than half of geographers who work for the federal government are employed in map making and regional research by the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Library of Congress. Careers in city planning and park and recreation work are open to geographers trained in environmental studies, spatial analysis and urban research.

Academic Program

Students considering degrees in Geography should take a college preparatory curriculum. High school course work in natural science, geography, history, political science and mathematics provide a good background applicable to this major.

At Missouri State, you have a choice of programs leading to either a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree or a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Geography. The B.S. offers three concentration options. The Cultural and Regional Geography option prepares students for careers in business, government or advanced graduate studies. The Environmental and Natural Resources option prepares students for careers in land use studies and natural resource evaluation. The Geotourism option prepares students for careers in tourism and the travel industry. Specific requirements for each of these options are described in the Missouri State Catalog online at www.missouristate.edu/catalog.

Courses

Required Courses for all B.A. and B.S. Programs in Geography

  • GRY 100: World Regional Geography
  • GRY 142: Introductory Physical Geography
  • GRY 363: Intro to Geographic Information Science
  • GRY 367: Research Methods in Geography and Planning
  • GRY 498: Placement in Geography, Geospatial Sciences, and Planning
  • One of the following statistics courses: MTH 340: Statistical Methods, or AGR 330: Statistical Applications in Agriculture, or PSY 200: Psychological Statistical Methods, or QBA 237: Basic Business Statistics, or REC 328: Statistical Applications in Recreation, Sport, and Park Administration, or SOC 302: Statistics for Social Research

Additional B.A. Program Requirements

  • One of the following: GRY 300 (Geography of the United States) or GRY 305 (Geography of Selected World Regions)
  • One of the following field-studies courses: GRY 301 (Geography of the Ozarks), GRY 353 (Geographic Field Studies), or GRY 470 (International Field Study in Geography)
  • An additional 12 hours from GRY/GEO/PLN courses
  • Minor required

Additional B.S. Program Requirements

Cultural and Regional Geography Option 
  • One of the following: GRY 300 (Geography of the United States), GRY 305 (Geography of Selected World Regions)
  • One of the following: GRY 320 (Cultural Geography), GRY 321 (Economic Geography), GRY 322 (Urban Geography), GRY 323 (World Political Geography)
  • One of the following field-studies courses: GRY 301 (Geography of the Ozarks), GRY 353 (Geographic Field Studies), or GRY 470 (International Field Study in Geography)
  • An additional 12 hours from GRY/GEO/PLN courses
  • Minor required
Environmental and Natural Resources Option 
  • GRY 135: Principles of Weather and Climate
  • GRY 348: Geomorphology
  • GRY 351: Conservation of Natural Resources
  • GRY 535: Global Climate and Weather Cycles
  • GEO 561: Intermediate Geographic Information Science
  • One of the following: GRY 300 (Geography of the United States), GRY 305 (Geography of Selected World Regions), GRY 320 (Cultural Geography), GRY 321 (Economic Geography), GRY 322 (Urban Geography), GRY 323 (World Political Geography)
  • One of the following field-studies courses: GRY 301 (Geography of the Ozarks), GRY 353 (Geographic Field Studies), or GRY 470 (International Field Study in Geography)
  • An additional 3 hours from GRY/GEO/PLN courses
  • Minor required
Geotourism Option
  • GRY 308: Geography of World Tourism
  • GRY 310: Fundamentals of Tourism
  • GRY 328: Principles of Geotourism
  • GRY 410: The Geotourism Industry
  • GRY 470: International Field Study in Geography
  • GRY 510: Applications in Sustainable Geotourism
  • One of the following: GRY 318 (Geography of National Parks), GRY 320 (Cultural Geography), PLN 372 (Community Development)
  • At least 3 hours from the following: GLG 171 (Environmental Geology), GRY 108 (Principles of Sustainability), GRY 301 (Geography of the Ozarks), GRY 305 (Geography of Selected World Regions), GRY 321 (Economic Geography), GRY 322 (Urban Geography), GRY 323 (World Political Geography), GRY 353 (Geographic Field Studies), GRY 399 (Internship in Geography), PLN 100 (Understanding Cities), PLN 573 (Urban Design and Preservation), PLN 574 (Open Space Planning), PLN 599 (Internship in Planning)
  • Minor required.

Faculty

The Department of Geography, Geology and Planning is staffed by 23 full-time faculty members, most of whom hold the Ph.D. degree. The faculty members stress excellence in teaching and are active in research designed to maintain their professional expertise.

Facilities

The department occupies lecture and laboratory space in Temple Hall. These facilities permit students to work in modern photogrammetry, cartography, GIS and remote sensing laboratories using the latest computers and software. The map library in the Duane G. Meyer Library holds more than 200,000 maps and an extensive collection of aerial photographs.

Special Opportunities & Services

Students majoring in Geography have opportunities for learning and social activities through membership in the Epsilon Chapter of Gamma Theta Upsilon, the international geographical honor society. Field trips and internships provide opportunities for direct observation and on-the-job learning. Geography interns obtain practical working experience in mapping, area analysis and regional study, data collection and interpretation and travel and tourism, while working for such diverse employers as mapping and surveying companies, planning agencies, travel agencies, other tourism industry employers, as well as other government and private sector employees. A senior seminar provides assistance with preparing placement materials and guidance for the job search.

Sample Schedule

Missouri State is committed to assisting students to graduate in four years--see sample graduation plans for this major.

The following is a sample schedule for this major--your actual schedule will vary.

Freshman Year

First Semester Courses Hours
GEP 101 First-Year Foundations 2
ENG 110 or COM 115: Writing I or Public Speaking 3
CSC 101 or CIS 101: Intro. to Computing 2
HST 121 or 122: U.S. History 3
GRY 100 World Regional Geography 3
Gen. Ed. -- Self Understanding (S & B or C & V) 3
Total Hours 16
Second Semester Courses Hours
COM 115 or ENG 110: Public Speaking or Writing I 3
KIN 100 Fitness for Living 2
MTH 135 College Algebra 3
GRY 142 Introductory Physical Geography 4
General Elective 3
Total Hours 15