This is an integrated geography programme which combines physical and human geography as well as offering opportunities for specialisation. Those choosing the BSc will usually have studied science subjects at A level or equivalent, but it is possible to transfer to the BA if your interests develop differently.
- UCAS code
- 3 years
- Application deadline
- 15 January 2017
- Applications per place
- 4 (2015 entry)*
- Total intake
- 130 (2017 entry)*
- Geography grade A required.
- English Language and Mathematics at grade C. For UK-based students, a grade C or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at: www.ucl.ac.uk/ug-reqs
- A total of 17-18 points in three higher level subjects including grade 6 in Geography, with no score below 5.
UK applicants qualifications
For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:
Not acceptable for entrance to this programme
Pass in Access to HE Diploma, with a minimum of 18-23 credits awarded with Distinction in the Level 3 units, the remainder of the Level 3 units awarded with Merit.
D3,D3,D3 - D3,D3,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects, including Geography grade D3
AAA-AAB at Advanced Highers (or AA at Advanced Higher and AAA at Higher - AA at Advanced Higher and BBB at Higher), including Geography grade A at Advanced Higher.
Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A-Levels at grades AAA-AAB, including Geography.
In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.
Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates
The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.
Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.
For more information see: www.ucl.ac.uk/upc.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.
- You will gain a broad range of practical skills enabling you to work successfully in the public and private sectors in the UK and around the world.
- We offer an exceptionally wide range of optional modules and have a particularly low staff-student ratio, encouraging individual choice and personal supervision.
- We are proud of our research record which has been very highly rated in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014).
- Our resources include specialist computing facilities for geographical information and satellite image analysis; world-class science laboratories enabling soil, water and microscopic analysis; a reference map collection; a dedicated reading room; and first-class library facilities.
Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Geography.
- 81% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
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In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 0.5 or 1.0 credits, adding up to a total of 4.0 credits for the year. Modules are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional modules varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 1.0 credit is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).
The Geography BA and BSc share core elements and it is your personal interests, and the options you wish to pursue, that should shape your choice. In your first year you take three core modules and five optional modules.
In your second year, two compulsory modules are supplemented by six modules chosen from a substantial pool of options. It is possible to focus your module selection around systematic themes such as development geography, environmental and conservation management, social geography and climate change.
Your dissertation is the main focus of year three. In addition you take further optional modules, which may include participation in exchange programmes with universities in Australia, Canada, Europe or Singapore.
Fieldwork throughout the programme can take place both in the UK and abroad, and it is possible to base your dissertation on an overseas project. Recent destinations include Australia, Belize, India, Montserrat and Papua New Guinea. Financial support for overseas fieldwork expeditions may be available through expedition funds.
An indicative guide to the structure of this programme, year by year.
Data Acquisition and Interpretation
Ideas in Geography
Writing and Analysis in Geography
Core foundational modules
You will select 2.5 credits from a range of year one Geography modulesas given below and can include 0.5 credits from a relevant year one ancillary module outside of Geography:
Environmental Systems and Processes
Human Ecology: Geographical Perspectives
London: A Geographical Introduction
Methods in Physical Geography
The Practice of Geography
Core intermediary modules
Students then select 3.0 credits of intermediary modules from the specialised areas below:
Human Geography: Cultural and Historical Geography; Development Geography; Environment and Society; GIS and Geodemographics; Political Geography and Geopolitics; Urban Geography
Physical Geography: Ecological Patterns and Processes; Environmental Remote Sensing; Geomorphology; Hydroclimatology; Reconstructing Past Environments.
In addition students may also take Statistics for Environmental Geographers or 0.5 credit units from outside of Geography.
Core advanced modules
Students then select up to 2.5 credits of advanced modules from the specialised areas below. In addition, students may attend a field class (0.5 units), undertake a study abroad term (1.5 units), or enrol for independent study (0.5 units).
Human Geography: Cultural and Historical Geography II; Development Geography II; Environment and Society II; Mining Social and Geographic Datasets; Political Geography and Geopolitics II; Urban Geography II
Physical Geography: Coastal and Estuarine Environments; Global Environmental Change; Principles and Practices of Remote Sensing; Restoration and Management of Freshwater Ecosystems; Wetland Environments.
Your timetable will include lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical classes and fieldwork. As you progress, the focus shifts to independent and critical learning, with student-led discussions and presentations becoming more important.
First year assessment combines independent coursework completed throughout the year, with end-of-year written examinations. In years two and three, assessment may vary - some modules combine written examinations with independent projects, some assessed solely by written examination. Your dissertation carries significant weight in your final year.
Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Geography BSc.
Having been trained in both sciences and humanities, UCL geographers are skilled in taking different perspectives on an issue, working independently to complete a project and adapting to changing circumstances.
Geographers embark on many diverse careers: from teaching and research to commerce, planning and administration. Their expertise is valuable for environmental and physical planning, surveying and employment in government, industry and the financial sector.
First career destinations of recent graduates (2012-2014) of this programme include:
- Forensic Accountant, KPMG
- Policy Officer, Darlington Hall Trust
- Social Researcher, Department for Communities and Local Government
- Research Assistant, UCL
- Full-time student, MSc in Water Science, Policy and Management at University of Oxford
*Data taken from the 'Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education' survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2012-2014 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.
“I chose to study geography at UCL because I wanted to experience quality teaching and learning in a diverse, dynamic city with a rich geographical story. Geography at UCL provided great flexibility in terms of the study choices I could make. I was attracted by the fact that I could shape my own degree around my own interests. I felt that a degree programme at UCL would allow me to take control of my own learning so that I could follow my interests. I definitely made the right choice!”Craig Adams - Environmental Geography BSc (2012)
“The opportunity to study at a leading global university in the heart of such a vibrant and energetic city cannot be underestimated. Whilst studying I was a committee member of both UCL Boat Club and the Raise and Give (RAG) society. Both of these positions gave me experience and confidence entering my professional career. I undertook an APMP project management module in my final year which has been of great use.”Thomas Curtress - Geography BSc (2012)
“At UCL I went on two field trips abroad: to Mallorca in my second year and Greece in my third year. These were real opportunities to engage with lecturers and researchers on a different level, and contextualise what you were learning in a lecture theatre. These field trips have assisted in my career, providing the experience of working on a team project from start to finish, and the presentation, communication and teamwork skills I developed have proved invaluable in the work place.”Hugo Watkins - Geography BSc (2014)
Fees and funding
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2017/18 academic year and are for the first year of the programme only.
- UK/EU students
- £TBC (2017/18 - see below)
- Overseas students
- £23,710 (2017/18)
UK/EU undergraduate fees are currently (August 2016) capped at £9,000 and UCL charges fees at the level of that cap. This cap on UK/EU undergraduate fees is currently under review by the UK Government and may be subject to increase for the year commencing 2017 and for each year of study thereafter. Fees for overseas students may be subject to an annual increase in subsequent years of study by up to 5%.
Please see the full details of UCL's fees and possible changes on the UCL Current Students website
Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.
The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.
Application and next steps
In the selection process we aim for there to be two-way communication so both you and the department can make the right choices. In addition to looking at your qualifications we will also be examining your personal statement for evidence of your interest in and enthusiasm for geography and for proficiency in key skills.
How to apply
Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.
Application deadline: 15 January 2017
Most students are invited to attend an open day once they have been made an offer based on their predicted or actual A level (or equivalent) performance and their potential and aspirations. Our open days include student-led seminars, a tour of UCL and a tutorial with a member of staff.
We are happy to consider applications for deferred entry, especially where interesting and productive plans are being made for the 'gap' year.
The Geography BA and BSc degrees follow similar paths. Although it makes no difference to the module choices open to you, most applicants base their degree choice on the A level (or equivalent) subjects they have followed: BA if they have taken arts or social science, BSc for those with sciences. It is possible to transfer if your interest develops in a different direction.
For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students