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What is a Geography Degree?
Geography is the area of study and practice that deals with the land survey, including the mapping of structures and formations, both natural and man made. Geography has several specializations and subfields that relate to various aspects and functions of geographic study, including utilizing current information to identify trends, occurrences and possibilities. More specifically, geographers may be tasked to study the human and physical geographic characteristics of a region or locale. This information is often gathered and filtered through a lens that helps shed light on political and cultural constructs of that defined area and time.
College Requirements for Geographers
An education in geography is often obtained at the bachelor or master degree level. Individuals will learn about the variety of tool, systems, methods and techniques necessary to gather data and analyze it accordingly. Based on the type of geography one choose to specialize in, their area of expertise is further augmented by relevant analytical aids and models. In addition to gather information, geographers must be able to present their findings through sufficient writing skill.
A curriculum may include:
- Distribution and Environment
- Environmental Science
- Data modeling
- Tools and Techniques
Schools that offer real world experience through the practical application of learned knowledge are generally ideal for potential geographers. Additionally, the desired specialization in the field, be it urban, medical, physical or otherwise, should be offered by any potential school a student considers. By researching one's options, an individual should be able to form a short list of school they find desirable, and make their final decision based on specific offerings and opportunities available to them. The AAG and AGS may be worthy of additional research for students serious about a career in geography.
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Employment Opportunities in Geography
Geography as a profession will see significant growth over the next decade, though the field itself is expected to remain relatively small. This growth is due to increased accuracy of information due to technology, leading to better planning and business practice and a need for professional who can assist in making informed environmentally safe decision. Environmental concerns are expected to increase rapidly over the next decade, and geography provide actual mapping and data of how sprawl and human growth affects land and water resources. The annual median income of a geographer is $74,260 which is $35,70 per hour.
Top Paying States for Geographers
- Virginia $96,280
- Maryland $84,730
- Washington $80,860
- Oregon $79,860
- Colorado $77,950
Top Employers of Geographers
- Federal Executive Branch
- Architectural & Engineering Firms
- Colleges & Universities
- State Government
- Scientific Research Centers