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Human Geography BA(Hons)

Attendance UCAS code/apply Year of entry
3 years full time L702 2017
4 years full time including sandwich year L704 2017
4 years full time including foundation year L703 2017
6 years part time Apply direct to the University 2017

Why choose this course?

This course is ideal if you are interested in the socio-economic aspects of geography, engaging with real life and real lives to examine and ultimately seek solutions to a range of human problems. An emphasis on practical fieldwork offers plenty of scope to travel both in the UK and overseas.

Geography course director Dr Annie Hughes talks about the geography programmes on offer at Kingston University:

Watch a video to find out why you should study at Kingston University:

What you will study

The course is designed to allow you to explore key geographical concerns and gives you a remarkable opportunity to seek solutions and make a difference. You will learn how to interpret and analyse a range of geographical information, and will acquire practical skills that employers recognise as important. These include data-handling and analysis, communication, time and task management and IT literacy, preparing you for employment. Subject-specific skills are developed through an extensive fieldwork programme as well as through an emphasis on geographical information systems (GIS).

Year 1 provides a thorough foundation in human geography. You will gain insight into the contemporary concerns of humanity in our globalised world. You will also be introduced to a broad range of key transferable skills.

Year 2 will offer you a more in-depth understanding of important contemporary geographical concerns. You will also develop your research, evaluative and practical skills through field studies at home and overseas. You will be encouraged to explore the discipline's diversity through a series of fascinating modules.

Year 3 enables you to specialise further, through the completion of an independent dissertation, as well as through captivating modules that cover a wide range of topics. You will also be encouraged to develop your geographical imagination through international fieldwork.

Module listing

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list.

Year 1

  • This module is designed to introduce you to key geographical theories and concepts and deals with the relationship of human societies to a range of economic, cultural, social and political processes.

    On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:

    • Engage with a range of theoretical and conceptual issues in human geography.
    • Show an understanding of current global patterns, trends and processes in relation to key geographical ideas and approaches.
    • Demonstrate a range of oral and written communication skills (oral presentations, essay, report, peer review).
    • Provide evidence of reading with a critical and analytic sensibility.
  • The introduction to the module will provide the overview starting with the concept of regional geography as a sub-discipline in geography, followed by a set of core lectures analysing the major regions of the world. An accompanying seminar programme will aid you in evaluating regional concepts and alternative definitions of regions. Workshop sessions will be provided as an arena for preparing assignments and formative assessment.

  • Spatial analysis introduces and develops the fundamental geographical skills of data collection, analysis and presentation and the solving of spatial problems using GIS. It concerns data types, representations of reality and key spatial analysis techniques.

  • This core module introduces techniques of fieldwork and the principles that form the basis of successful investigations within this, including statistics and subject specific to geographical, geological and environment degrees.

    On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:

    • prepare for and perform basic fieldwork techniques;
    • produce a field report in the appropriate format; underpinned by field observations and records;
    • undertake elementary data analysis;
    • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the fundamental scientific (and other) principles and techniques that are pertinent to the course; and
    • apply undergraduate-level academic skills.

Year 2

  • Students design, manage and execute a geographical research project in a 'real-life' setting. Students are tutored in aspects of research design: defining research questions, research philosophy and appropriate methodologies. Students learn practical aspects of research design such as logistical considerations of time and budget limitations as well as data archiving (including digital and mobile technology) and location-based analysis. They will design and manage a field-based research project in a UK and/or overseas setting. A tutorial system will run in parallel to the taught elements of the module whereby students will integrate and develop their learning from this module to the wider academic and professional/ workplace context. The tutorial system will provide the development platform for the production of an independent research proposal. In addition, students will develop skills in the analysis and modelling of spatial data exploring the application of spatial statistical techniques using GIS.

  • This module focuses on various approaches and philosophies underpinning geographical studies and how these inform different methods of geographical research and enquiry. It also teaches students a range of appropriate research techniques adopted in geographical investigation. It offers students practical instruction in collecting good quality data with these techniques and also introduces students to the analysis and interpretation of field data. In addition, it reflects on ethical components of research.

  • The module aims to introduce you to, and develop your understanding of, the core concerns of contemporary social and cultural geography: its substantive concerns, theoretical perspectives, and methodological innovations. The module evaluates the role of space and place in the construction of social relations and cultural identities and how these are differentiated according to the social constructions of class, gender, race and ethnicity, age, sexuality and disability. It aims to develop skills of critical social and cultural interpretation through your engagement with how geography is central to the construction of social and cultural difference.

  • The module is designed to introduce you to the basic principles of investigating a range of contemporary global issues in terms of their political economy. This includes a wide range of spatial issues from the local to the global and the inter-linkages and process that bind them together. The key focus is to understand how contemporary capitalism plays out across different spatial levels and to highlight the processes that underpin it and the implications for different communities. This includes exploring relations between, state, business and citizens.


Optional sandwich year

Year 3/4

  • This module provides experience in the design, execution and preparation of an independent but approved programme of research. Students will be required to identify and analyse a significant research problem and demonstrate an understanding of relevant arguments by presenting a coherent critique of the available research literature and materials, rigorous research methodology, data manipulation, analysis and interpretation.

    On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

    • identify and formulate research questions within an appropriate academic subject;
    • demonstrate the ability to develop a detailed, coherent and logical argument;
    • develop and implement an appropriate research methodology, including evaluation of safety and ethical considerations relevant to the proposed project;
    • demonstrate skills in the collection, analysis and interpretation of geographical data;
    • show an ability to organise a work programme effectively and independently, with support from a supervisor;
    • through the Personal Tutorial System, reflect on the variety of employability skills applied and further developed through their research project as a foundation for the consideration of further study and their professional/work place development.
  • This module introduces you to critical issues of development including cross-cutting themes of poverty, exclusion, inequality, famine, HIV/AIDS, natural hazards, gender and conflict. In addition, the module explores relations between developed states and the developing world contexts to explore some of the challenges of inequality and globalisation. The module will include a substantial fieldwork element.

    On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:

    • Critically assess contemporary approaches to development.
    • Explain the geographies of developing countries, including a critical assessment of the importance of the representation of places and the ways different  societies relate to them.
    • Explain contemporary problems in, and future prospects of, developing countries; including current geographical and region-specific issues affecting development.
    • Undertake field research on critical issues relevant to the study of development.
    • Demonstrate skills in sourcing and evaluating information and data on development issues from a variety of media sources.
  • The module reviews current perspectives on notions and understandings of what constitutes urban spaces and approaches to studying urban environments, exploring critical perspectives and intervention strategies that construct these environments. It also explores the relationship between urban form and identity and questions the links between cultural practices and concepts of community, with a particular focus on social processes, urban spaces and design within the built environment. Additionally, after completing this module, students should have further developed their ability to make and record accurate observations in the field; present conclusions in a logical, intelligible manner; and increased their ability to work as a part of a team.

  • This module aims to provide students with an understanding of contemporary debates relating to rural areas in both the developed and developing world. It examines the processes and patterns of contemporary change in rural regions and analyses the factors conditioning the restructuring of rural land use and rural economic, social and cultural systems across the world.


You will have the opportunity to study a foreign language, free of charge, during your time at the University on a not-for-credit basis as part of the Kingston Language Scheme. Options currently include: Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Study abroad as part if your degreeMost of our undergraduate courses support studying or working abroad through the University's Study Abroad or Erasmus programme.

Find out more about where you can study abroad:

If you are considering studying abroad, read what our students say about their experiences.

Key information set

The scrolling banner(s) below display some key factual data about this course (including different course combinations or delivery modes of this course where relevant).

We aim to ensure that all courses and modules advertised are delivered. However in some cases courses and modules may not be offered. For more information about why, and when you can expect to be notified, read our Changes to Academic Provision.

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This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

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This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

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