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GEOGRAPHY

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Geography students at Sacramento State explore Earth’s natural and cultural environments using methods from the natural sciences and the social sciences.  They study climate, weather, landforms, water resources, and plants and animals, as well as peoples, societies, economies, and cities.  These phenomena overlap in intricate ways, giving rise to distinctive places and regions.  Geography’s approach emphasizes Earth’s spatial relationships and patterns, and the processes that govern them, whether found in nature or in human behavior. 

Students work with quantitative and qualitative data from a variety of sources, including published censuses and maps, aerial imagery, field and lab work, surveys, and interviews.  They use a variety of tools, including Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and other computer applications to collect, display, and analyze spatial data.  Geography students study and address complex issues, especially those with a human-environment interface, such as climate change, resource management, urban growth and design, globalization, immigration, ethnic identity, and territorial conflict.  Geographical understanding is applied at different scales, from the local to the global, and regional expertise is cultivated.

Lower division offerings in physical geography, cultural geography, and geographical techniques introduce students to the discipline. At the upper division level, students can choose among regional classes, topical classes on subjects from meteorology to transportation, and technique classes that include GIS, map making, quantitative methods, remote sensing, and field work. Majors select a concentration in a geographic subfield. Although not required, the department encourages students to take elective courses and/or pursue a minor complementary to their geographical interests. It also encourages and facilitates students going on Education Abroad.

Concentrations

  • BA: Geographic Information Systems and Analysis / Human Geography / Metropolitan Area Planning / Physical Geography
  • Certificates: Metropolitan Planning / Resource Planning

Special Features

  • Numerous internships and jobs in the Sacramento area, including many with state and local government
  • Many opportunities for field work in a variety of settings
  • A senior project class in which each student conducts his/her own research
  • A small major allowing for lots of interaction with faculty and fellow students, including attendance at state and regional professional meetings
  • Various pathways to complete the major, providing flexibility and the opportunity to make efficient progress toward graduation

UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS

Requirements - Bachelor of Arts Degree

Units required for Major: 46
Minimum total units required for BA: 120

Courses in parentheses are prerequisites.

Note: Every candidate must complete all of the Geography Core and one Concentration.

A. Required Lower Division Core Courses (10 units)

(3)

GEOG 1

Physical Geography: The Distribution of Natural Phenomena

(3)

GEOG 2

Cultural Geography

(3)

GEOG 3

Introduction to Maps and Geographic Technologies

(1)

GEOG 11

Laboratory in Physical Geography (GEOG 1; may be taken concurrently)

B. Required Upper Division Core Courses (21 units)

(3)

GEOG 102

Ideas and Skills in Geography (GEOG 1 or GEOG 2 or GEOG 3 or GEOG 11)

(3)

GEOG 118

Earth Transformed

(3)

GEOG 190

Senior Research Seminar in Geography (GEOG 1, GEOG 2, GEOG 3, GEOG 102; senior standing; GWAR certification before Fall 09; or WPJ score of 80+; or 3-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W; or 4-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X; or WPJ score 70/71 and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X; instructor permission)

One course from each of the following four areas:

Geographic Techniques

(3)

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

(3)

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

(3)

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

(3)

GEOG 193A

Field Geography: Urban-Metropolitan (Instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 193B

Field Geography: Suburban-Rural (Instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 193C

Field Geography: Physical (Instructor permission)

Human Geography

(3)

GEOG 141

Geography of Economic Activity

(3)

GEOG 145

Population Geography

(3)

GEOG 147

Urban Geography

(3)

GEOG 148

Urban and Regional Planning

(3)

GEOG 149

Transportation Geography (GEOG 141 or GEOG 147 or GEOG 148 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied GIS (GEOG 109)

Physical Geography

(3)

GEOG 111

Elements of Meteorology (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 113

Climate (GEOG 1 or GEOG 5 or GEOL 8 or GEOL 10 or ENVS 10, or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 115

Biogeography (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 116

Global Climate Change (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 117

Landforms (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

Regional Geography

(3)

GEOG 121

United States and Canada

(3)

GEOG 125

Geography of East Asia

(3)

GEOG 128

Geography of Europe

(3)

GEOG 131

California

Additional Requirements for Concentrations

Note: Courses cannot double count for the core and the concentration.

Geographic Information Systems and Analysis Concentration
Emphasizes student development of geospatial skills. Geographic Information Science, cartography, remote sensing, and quantitative methods prepare students to tackle any problem with a spatial dimension—from advising an individual firm on good locations for a new branch or supplier to modeling the spread of wildfires across a region to analyzing the global spread of diseases or new technologies. Students must take GEOG 109 Graphic Information Systems for the concentration.

In addition, students must take at least FOUR of the following courses, with at least one each from Data Analysis and Data Output categories.

1. Data Analysis

(3)

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

2. Data Output

(3)

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

(3)

GEOG 182

Internet Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109, CSC 1; or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 199

Special Problems (Approval of the faculty sponsor and Department chair)

It is recommended that students take GEOG 193A, GEOG 193B, or GEOG 193C to satisfy their Geographic Techniques core area requirement.

Human Geography Concentration
Examines how diverse human cultures and economies interact with natural environments to create distinctive places with unique achievements, challenges, and conflicts. Students acquire cross-cultural perspectives and knowledge relevant to globalization, international development, energy and other natural resource issues, hazards and disasters, migration and demography, and geopolitical situations.

TWO additional human geography courses from this list:

(3)

GEOG 141

Geography of Economic Activity

(3)

GEOG 145

Population Geography

(3)

GEOG 147

Urban Geography

(3)

GEOG 148

Urban and Regional Planning

(3)

GEOG 149

Transportation Geography (GEOG 141 or GEOG 147 or GEOG 148 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

TWO additional regional geography courses from this list:

(3)

GEOG 121

United States and Canada

(3)

GEOG 125

Geography of East Asia

(3)

GEOG 127

Geography of Africa

(3)

GEOG 128

Geography of Europe

(3)

GEOG 131

California

ONE additional technique course from this list:

(3)

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

(3)

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

(3)

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

(3)

GEOG 193A*

Field Geography: Urban-Metropolitan (Instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 193B*

Field Geography: Suburban-Rural (Instructor permission)

*The technique cannot be a field course if a field course was taken for the core.

Metropolitan Area Planning Concentration
Helps students understand how cities have evolved, with an emphasis on spatial patterns and the role of transportation in structuring settlements. The concentration provides students with skills for designing cities that address important issues such as sustainability, affordable housing and transportation, a strong civic life, and public health and safety.

Students must take:

(3)

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

(3)

GEOG 148

Urban and Regional Planning

TWO of the following urban elective courses, one of which must be GEOG 147 or GEOG 149:

(3)

GEOG 141

Geography of Economic Activity

(3)

GEOG 145

Population Geography

(3)

GEOG 147

Urban Geography

(3)

GEOG 149

Transportation Geography (GEOG 141 or GEOG 147, or GEOG 148 or instructor permission)

ONE of the following technique elective courses:

(3)

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

(3)

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

(3)

GEOG 193A*

Field Geography: Urban-Metropolitan (Instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 193B*

Field Geography: Suburban-Rural (Instructor permission)

*The technique cannot be a field course if a field course was taken for the core.

Additional Recommended Courses:
The courses below provide valuable additional knowledge and perspectives for students choosing the MAP concentration:

(3)

ECON 132

State and Local Government Finance (ECON 1A and ECON 1B, or ECON 104)

(3)

ECON 180

Urban Economics (ECON 1B)

(3)

ENVS 122

Environmental Impact Analysis: CEQA and NEPA

(3)

GEOG 131

California

(3)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

(3)

HIST 163

The City in US History

(3)

HIST 184/ART 118B

California Architecture and Urban History

(3)

RPTA 154

Sports and Recreation Facility Design and Administration

Physical Geography Concentration
Focuses on earth systems and human impacts on them, including global climate change. Students interested in natural science and environmental management study weather and climate, plant and animal communities, landforms, and water resources, emphasizing the growing human role in influencing and managing these complex interrelated systems.

FOUR additional physical geography courses from this list:

(3)

GEOG 111

Elements of Meteorology (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 115

Biogeography (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 116

Global Climate Change (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 117

Landforms (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

(3)

GEOG 193C*

Field Geography: Physical (instructor permission)

*The technique cannot be a field course if a field course was taken for the core.

GEOG 113 can be used to meet the physical geography breadth requirement in the core, but cannot be used in the concentration.

ONE additional technique course from this list:

(3)

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

(3)

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(3)

GEOG 163

Applied Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109)

(3)

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

Requirements - Minor - Geography

Total units required for Minor: 18

(6) Two of the following lower division courses:

 

GEOG 1

Physical Geography: The Distribution of Natural Phenomena

 

GEOG 2

Cultural Geography

 

GEOG 3

Introduction to Maps and Geographic Technologies

(9) A minimum of 9 units upper division Geography, excluding GEOG 194, GEOG 195, GEOG 198, and GEOG 199.

(3) Three additional units in Geography, either lower division or upper division.

Courses must be selected in consultation with and approved by a faculty advisor in Geography. A minimum of 6 upper division units must be earned in residence.

Requirements - Minor - Geographic Information Systems

Total units required for Minor: 18

Courses in parentheses are prerequisites.

Required Courses (9 units)

(3)

GEOG 3

Introduction to Maps and Geographic Technologies

(3)

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

(3)

GEOG 110

Advanced Geographic Information Systems (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

(9) Select three of the following:

 

GEOG 105

Computer Cartography (GEOG 109 or instructor permission)

 

GEOG 107

Remote Sensing

 

GEOG 163

Applied GIS (GEOG 109)

 

GEOG 181

Quantitative Methods in Geography

 

 

Three units of upper division GIS coursework from another department with permission of the GIS Minor advisor.

Courses must be selected in consultation and approved by a faculty advisor in Geography. A minimum of 6 upper division units must be earned in residence.

Requirements - Certificate - Pre - Planning

The Pre-Planning program consists of 15-16 units in addition to the major and culminates in a certificate. Select either the Metropolitan or Resource Planning Concentration below. No more than two courses may be taken in any one department.

Courses in parentheses are prerequisites.
Metropolitan Planning
(15) Select five of the following:

ECON 104

Introduction to the U.S. Economy

ECON 120

Economics and Environmental Degradation

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

GEOG 145

Population Geography

GEOG 147

Urban Geography

 

GEOG 148

Urban and Regional Planning

 

GEOG 149

Transportation Geography (GEOG 141 or GEOG 147 or GEOG 148 or instructor permission)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

GOVT 170

Public Policy Development (GOVT 1 or equivalent; GWAR Certification before Fall 09, or WPJ score of 80+; or 3-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W; or 4-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X; or WPJ score 70/71 and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X)

GOVT 180

California State and Local Government

HIST 163

The City in U.S. History

Resource Planning
(15-16) Select five of the following:

ECON 120

Economics and Environmental Degradation

GEOG 109

Geographic Information Systems

GEOG 117

Landforms (GEOG 1 or instructor permission)

GEOG 161

California's Water Resources

GEOL 10

Physical Geology

GOVT 170

Public Policy Development (GOVT 1 or equivalent; GWAR Certification before Fall 09, or WPJ score of 80+; or 3-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W; or 4-unit placement in ENGL 109M/W and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X; or WPJ score 70/71 and co-enrollment in ENGL 109X)

GOVT 180

California State and Local Government

HROB 101

Management of Contemporary Organizations

Students must have an advisor and will not be allowed to proceed in the program without an advisor's signature. In some cases courses may be accepted that have already been completed. There can be no double counting from among courses used in the major.

Career Possibilities

Geographer · Cartographer · Climatologist · Resource Scientist · Meteorologist · Geospatial Intelligence Professional · Environmental Scientist · Geographic Information System Specialist · Geographic Consultant · Surveyor · Sustainability Coordinator · Water Resources Analyst · Redevelopment Specialist · Environmental Planner · Energy Analyst · Foreign Area Specialist · Land Economist · Recreation Planner · Locational Analyst · Environmental Education Specialist · Conservationist · Urban Planner · Transportation Planner · Aerial Photo Interpreter · Remote Sensing Specialist · Community Development Specialist · Land Use Planner · Demographer · Cultural Resources Manager · Air Resources Specialist · Real Estate Research Analyst · Pedestrian and Bicycle Advocate  · Teacher· Recycling Coordinator · Route Planner · Habitat Manager

Faculty

Robin Datel, Marsha Dillon, Bruce Gervais, Thomas Krabacher, Miles Roberts, Michael Schmandt, Mathew Schmidtlein, James Wanket

Contact Information

Michael Schmandt, Department Chair
Crystal Little, Administrative Support Coordinator
Amador Hall 550
(916) 278-6109
www.csus.edu/geog



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