You are viewing this course for September start 2024
Aberystwyth University’s Department of Geography and Earth Sciences is one of the most established and experienced departments of its kind. Aberystwyth University offers you the unique opportunity to study geography in one of the most picturesque locations in Europe.
Set on the coast of Cardigan Bay and surrounded by a great diversity of beautiful environments, including marine, moorland, mountain and grassland, the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences is uniquely placed to make the most of the stunning landscapes that surround it, providing you with a fabulous variety of fieldwork and recreational opportunities. This degree accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) will equip you with the skills, abilities and expertise to face and engage with the challenges facing society today.
Why study Physical Geography at Aberystwyth University?
This programme has been accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG).
As a large dynamic Geography community we are able to offer you an extremely broad range of geographical specialism, opportunities and facilities:
- river catchment processes
- quaternary environmental change
- current trends in Geohazards
- remote sensing and geographical information systems
- fieldwork opportunities in New Zealand, Crete, New York, and Ireland
- travel awards to fund your own adventures (up to £400) that are available each year
- state of the art teaching facilities with the latest technology to enhance learning
- fully stocked laboratories with an array of analytical instruments e.g. mass spectrometers and core scanners of which can be used for fieldwork and independent study.
Department of Geography and Earth Science: lecturers are all qualified to PhD level or working towards a PhD.
Modules September start - 2024
Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.
|An introduction to Earth Materials
|Earth Surface Environments
|How to Build a Planet *
|Life on Earth
|Living in a Dangerous World
|Researching the World: data collection and analysis *
|Catchment Systems *
|Chemical Analysis of Natural Materials
|Geographical Information Systems
|Physical Analysis of Natural Materials
|Physical Geography and Environmental Science Research Design and Fieldwork Skills
|Quantitative Data Analysis
|Reconstructing Past Environments
|The Frozen Planet
|Advanced Earth Materials
|Fundamentals of Geochemistry
|Geographical Perspectives on the Sustainable Society
|Geography Dissertation *
|Applied Environmental Management
|Environmental geochemistry and biogeochemistry
|Glaciers and Ice Sheets
|Monitoring our Planet's Health from Space
|People, Climate and Environment: a Palaeoenvironmental Perspective
|Volcanic Activity: Hazards and Environmental Change
* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh
What can I do with a degree in Physical Geography?
Our graduates have, for example, found employment as environmental consultants, planners, civil servants, surveyors, in and in education among many other things.
Employability is embedded within all courses provided by us. Our degrees provide a solid foundation for a vast array of careers across a range of sectors. In a rapidly shifting global economy, our graduates are adaptable and able to draw on a range of transferable skills, ensuring that they are always in demand.
The skill sets include:
- Enhanced mathematical and computational skills;
- Effective problem solving and creative thinking skills;
- Information technology skills;
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team;
- Time-management, organisational skills;
- Communication skills both written and oral;
- Self-motivation and self-reliance.
If you're interested in taking part in a Year in Industry, then you may be interested in our sister course Physical Geography with Integrated Year in Industry (F846). The syllabus is identical to this course (F840), however you undertake your work placement in between your second and final year of studying.
International Exchange Opportunities:
For those who would like study with one of our partner Universities within Europe and the rest of the world, then the course Physical Geography with Integrated study abroad may appeal to you (F845). This course is identical to F840, however you will study abroad in between your second and final year.
Teaching & Learning
What will I learn?
The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three year degree scheme.
In your first year you will be introduced to:
- key concepts in geographical study
- issues and techniques in the collection, analysis and presentation of geographical data
- climate change
- landscape processes
- global environmental change
In your second year you will develop further in:
- laboratory and computer research skills in preparation for your independent research project
- analysing quantitative data sets
- producing maps and other graphical representations of geographical data
You will also participate in a residential field trip in the UK or overseas, and you can choose optional modules to specialise or simply maintain a broad interest across Geography.
In your third year:
- you will undertake an independent research project involving collection, analysis and interpretation of your own data
- you will be allocated your own advisor who will provide guidance
- optional modules as diverse as glaciology, hydrology, volcanic hazards, and past climate change, will enable you to tailor your study to suit your interests.
How will I be taught?
Our courses are taught through lectures, seminars, laboratory and computer practicals, small group tutorials, field courses and individual supervision of project work.
How will I be assessed?
We assess our students through a different range of methods. Some modules are assessed in part through traditional exams, but some have elements of coursework. We also have some modules that may require the student to produce practical reports, oral presentations, the design of web pages, production of short films, or contribution to online discussion forums. Some modules, notably the tutorials and field courses are assessed entirely through coursework.
Physical Geography starts with a love for the outdoors. It's brilliant because it's real, it's out there; you can't walk down a street without noticing geography. So many people have a fascination for the natural process which take place around us, but few truly understand them. By studying Physical Geography you can gain valuable knowledge about the world around you. By engaging with the world we live in we can understand it, promote it and conserve it for future generations, and that's pretty cool! Emily Brown
Physical Geography is EVERYWHERE - especially in Aberystwyth. You can't go far without catching glimpses of the sea, beaches, mountains or rivers, and what better subject to take than one that allows you to explore how these came to be and how they're changing today. It's a subject that will never cease to amaze me, and the course itself explains it in such an engaging way, and in such brilliant detail. Rachel Say
The thing I love about my course is that here in Aberystwyth, it's all around me - We have the sea, we have the mountains, we have the rivers, we have the valleys. My degree is the only one that wherever I am in the world, I can look and see it all around me. Jonathon Ackroyd
Typical Entry Requirements
UCAS Tariff 120 - 96
A Levels BBB-CCC
GCSE requirements (minimum grade C/4):
English or Welsh and Mathematics
BTEC National Diploma:
English Language Requirements:
See our Undergraduate English Language Requirements for this course. Pre-sessional English Programmes are also available for students who do not meet our English Language Requirements.
Country Specific Entry Requirements:
International students whose qualification is not listed on this page, can check our Country Specific Entry Requirements for further information.
The University welcomes undergraduate applications from students studying the Access to Higher Education Diploma or T-level qualifications, provided that relevant subject content and learning outcomes are met. We are not able to accept Access to Higher Education Diplomas or T-levels as a general qualification for every undergraduate degree course.
Our inclusive admissions policy values breadth as well as depth of study. Applicants are selected on their own individual merits and offers can vary. If you would like to check the eligibility of your qualifications before submitting an application, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for advice and guidance.