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Department of Geography and Geographic Information Sciences

Geography Courses Support Learning About Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

 

UNDERGRADUATE COURSES

GEOG 111 INTRODUCTION TO GEOGRAPHY
This course introduces students to the diversity of our world both in terms of the physical environment and the human population.  Students improve their geographic literacy by learning to identify, analyze, and explain physical and human processes and know where they occur on Earth. In addition, they will learn to think critically about local and global issues and how they interact. Issues often are often rooted in inequality and exclusion.

GEOG 201 WORLD REGIONS
This  course  is  an  introduction  to  the  regions  of  the  world  from  a geographic perspective. Topics explored often relate directly to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion and include cultural diversity and conflict, urbanization, environmental change, resource availability, development, population growth, and the preservation of political independence and new territorial organizations. Students learn to recognize and explain the significance of locations  around  the  world  and explore commonalities and issues that shape and define major world regions.

GEOG 202 NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY
Access to, and the use of, resources is often at the root of inequality.  This course focuses on natural resources and explores the history of human relationships to and use of natural resources. The components of and importance of environmental systems and ecosystem services is discussed along the environmental problems we face in the 21st century. In addition, aspects of natural resources and sustainability within a local, regional, and global context are explored, and the resource use choices we face and the consequences of those choices are examined and discussed. Becoming an informed citizen who can develop and critique ideas about how to be part of the solution with a focus on sustainability and equity is part of the course objectives. 

GEOG 205 HUMAN GEOGRAPHY
In this course a wide range of topics concerning the human population are explored, many of which relate directly to diversity, equity, and inclusion. The focus is on population and health, migration, culture, language, religion, race and ethnicity, political geography, food and agriculture, development, industry and energy, services and settlements, and urban patterns.  The goal is to explore, understand, and appreciate  the diverse human geography of our planet, and to begin to understand our complex world and the issues we face.

GEOG 210 PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY
While the main focus is on the physical diversity of our world, the environment in which people live is connected to the possibilities and limitations faced by human populations. Our society is increasingly aware of a complex variety of environmental problems and interdependencies that are important to understanding multiple aspects of diversity.

GEOG 300 POPULATION GEOGRAPHY
As of January 2020, the world’s population is approximately 7.62 billion people. No matter what your interest – economics, politics, culture, or the environment – this number of people cannot be ignored. Such a large number of people strain resources that are unevenly distributed resulting in multidimensional inequality. In this course, we examine the three processes that cause population to change –fertility, mortality, and migration –from a geographic perspective.

GEOG 301 ECONOMIC GEOGRAPHY
Economics is often at the heart of inequality both within the United States and across the world. Economic Geography covers geographies of major economic sectors and the related theories, including agriculture , industry and manufacturing, services and cities, transport geography, spatial interaction, and trade and spatial exchange. Radical economic geography is also discussed.

GEOG 303 INTRODUCTION TO URBAN GEOGRAPHY
Geographical principles are used to investigate historical, social, cultural, political, economic, and environmental factors related to the distribution, interrelations, and internal spatial organization of cities. Course topics will include: introductions to the study of urban geography and to the topic of urbanization; foundations and history of urbanization; contemporary urban systems; urbanization in less developed countries; neighborhood change, urban development, and urban governance; urban policy, planning, and design; social and cultural dimensions of cities; and problems of urbanization.

GEOG 499 SENIOR ASSIGNMENT
Every Geography major completes a research project (paper or poster) as the culminating experience prior to graduation. Virtually any topic can be viewed spatially and so falls in the realm of Geography, and senior assignment projects reflect that.  Recent Senior Assignment topics that relate directly to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion include:

  • Recreation of the Historic St. Louis Flood; Impacts and Demographics
  • Crime, Nature, and Society: A Spatial Analysis of Crime, Temperature, and Socioeconomic Conditions in Chicago, Illinois
  • Urban Land Use Changes on St. Louis’ Washington Avenue
  • Spatial Analysis of Homicides in Chicago, Illinois
  • Access to Care for Breast Cancer in Missouri
  • Urban Sprawl in the United States
  • Evolution of the Delmar Divide: Segregation Patterns and the Policies that Shaped Them
  • Patient access to Veterans Affairs facilities in Illinois
  • A geographical investigation into socioeconomic inequality of golf courses in the St. Louis area
  • Landfills in Metro East Illinois: Spatial Analysis of Landfills and Their Relationship to Disadvantaged Neighborhoods
  • Access to Local Farmers Markets for Lower Income Communities in Madison and St. Clair Counties
  • Urban Park Accessibility: Assessing Inequity in the City of St Louis, MO
  • Louis City Neighborhoods at Greatest Earthquake Risk
  • A Geographical Analysis of One Bedroom Apartment Costs: Madison, WI
  • Comparing St. Louis MetroLink & Portland MAX Stations’ Capacity for Transit-Oriented Development
  • Risk of Lead Exposure from Mining near Southeast Missouri’s Big River
  • An Investigation of the Geographical Association between Golf Course Quality and Socioeconomic-Demographic Characteristics of the Surrounding Communities in the St. Louis Area
  • Pedestrian Accessibility Under ADA Guidelines in Illinois Department of Transportation District 6

Visit our Senior Assignment poster gallery

GRADUATE COURSES and UNDERGRADATE COURSES AVAILABLE FOR GRADUATE CREDIT

GEOG 401 GEOGRAPHY OF DEVELOPMENT
We live in unequal world at the global, regional, and local levels. This course covers major theories, practices, and examples in development studies. Topics include concepts of development and country classification, measurement of development, major theories of development, as well as topical issues such as population, globalization, gender, culture and institutions in relation to development, and resources, environment and sustainable development. Examples of regional and national development such as found in Russia, Sub-Saharan Africa, China, India, Latin America, Europe and the United States are discussed in the context of the topical issues or special regional topics.

GEOG 402 CULTURAL LANDSCAPE
Landscapes reflect culture including aspects of inequality. This course examines the cultural landscape. Cultural landscapes are the result of the interaction  between  people  and  places.  Landscape  studies involve  a  number  of  disciplines,  including geography, architecture, history, art history, and literature. Upon completion of this course, you should be able to answer the following questions: How do ordinary environments reflect the values, beliefs, and ideas of a particular culture? How have different cultures made sense of and exploited their natural environment? What methods can be used to interpret cultural landscapes?

GEOG 404 MEDICAL GEOGRAPHY
Health is a fundamental aspect of human well-being which varies significantly spatially and culturally. This course examines medical geographic principles to help you understand the diversity of health and disease around the world and the processes connecting them. Throughout this course, you will improve your geographic literacy by learning to identify, analyze and explain issues pertaining to health and where they occur across Earth. In addition, you will learn to think critically about local and global issues and how they interact together.

GEOG 405 GEOGRAPHY OF FOOD
Food is a necessary component of life –we cannot survive without it –and, it is often one of life’s great joys. The production of food changes landscapes, the distribution of food brings a variety of cultures into contact with one another, and what foods are consumed (or avoided) are often a cultural identifier. In this course, we will consider the question “who eats what where?” and “why?” Students who successfully complete this course will be able to explain the complex and changing relationship between food and geography, and apply that knowledge to real-world situations.

GEOG 406 POLITICAL GEOGRAPHY
In this course we will be investigating political concepts, patterns, relations, and processes from a geographical perspective and across local, national, and global scales. Topics covered will include states and nations; colonialism and decolonization; electoral geography; geopolitics, international relations, and conflict; the seas, the poles, and outer space as the world’s remaining frontiers; and the political geography of everyday life. Geography is about more than just knowing where places are. It builds from this knowledge toward a deeper understanding of the spatial patterns and processes that constitute the global system. By the end of this course you should be able to identify, analyze, and explain a variety of spatial patterns and processes, both in general and as they pertain to political geography. You should also be able to apply geographical theories and concepts in analyzing how human perceptions, values, and actions contribute to those patterns and processes. Finally, this course will offer you an opportunity to cultivate and expand your geographical imagination, and you will be encouraged to reflect upon and think critically about the global system and your own place in it.

GEOG 598 GRADUATE RESEARCH PROJECT and GEOG 599 THESIS
Every Geography graduate major completes a research project or thesis as the culminating experience prior to graduation. Virtually any topic can be viewed spatially and so falls in the realm of Geography, and projects and theses reflect that.  Recent topics that relate directly to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion include:

Watch this space as we add information about more classes

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