Module Information

Module Identifier
GG13020
Module Title
Key concepts and skills for Geographers
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)
Mutually Exclusive
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 22 x 1 Hour Lectures
 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Semester 1: Literature review on prescribed geographical research theme (1,500 words)  30%
Semester Assessment Semester 2: Research project report (2,500 words)  70%
Supplementary Assessment Resubmission of failed components.  100%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  1. Describe the history and context of geographical research and the key concepts in human and physical geography.
  2. Identify types and sources of geographical data for research in both human and physical geography.
  3. Select appropriate methods for the collection, analysis, and presentation of data from both primary and secondary sources.
  4. Recognise the key concepts of space, place, scale, and time in geographical study.
  5. Integrate skills in data acquisition, analysis and interpretation to undertake effective geographical research
  6. Synthesize and present their research findings effectively in report format

Brief description

This module is designed to provide students with a broad introduction to the context and key concepts in geographical study, and to the issues and techniques in the acquisition, analysis and presentation of geographical data. The module comprises five sections which are linked together through the development of a prescribed geographical research project, introduced at the start of the course. The first section considers the context of geographical study, discussing the histories of geography and the application and relevance of geographical knowledge from both human and physical geography perspectives. The second section considers practical aspects of studying geography and University, including conducting literature searches, writing essays and reports, understanding assessment criteria and feedback, and ethical practice and health and safety issues in geographical research. These first two sections are assessed through literature review on the prescribed research topic submitted at the end of semester 1. The third section outlines some of the key types and sources of data for both human and physical geography, and the key techniques employed in data collection. The fourth section considers the analysis and presentation of both primary and secondary data from a science and social science perspective. The fifth section considers the key concepts of space, place, scale, and time for the study of geography. Throughout the course, students will be developing appropriate practical skills and the conceptual framework to complete their own research project effectively. The project topic is prescribed and appropriate datasets will also be provided for analysis. The aim of the project is to link the different elements of the course together and to provide a firm grounding in geographical research but without the pressure of having to devise a research question. This next step is developed further in year 2 through the revised practical modules and through dissertation preparation.

Content

The module is organized around five thematic sections and a research project which is introduced at the start of the course:
Section 1: The context of geographical study - histories of geography and the application and relevance of geographical knowledge
Section 2: Practical skills for studying geography at University - conducting literature searches, writing essays and reports, understanding assessment criteria and feedback, ethical and health and safety issues in geographical research
Section 3: Data sources - primary and secondary data sources and data collection
Section 4: Analysis and presentation of geographical data - introduction to analysis and presentation of primary and secondary data
Section 5: Geography: the importance of space, place, scale, and time - considering the key concepts that underpin geography
Research Project: The project is introduced at the beginning of the course and the skills developed during sections 1-5 will be applied to the prescribed project topic. Whilst students are expected to develop work on their project during the course, there is also specific project time allocated in Semester 2 timetable.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number The use of statistical analysis, including descriptive statistics, quantifying sampling error and introductory inferential statistics.
Communication By written assessments and graphical information
Improving own Learning and Performance Independent reading, self-directed learning and independent project work
Information Technology Competency in using the internet for sources of information, word processing, data analysis and presentation.
Personal Development and Career planning Many of the skills developed through this module are transferable to non-academic contexts and students are made aware of their wider applicability.
Problem solving The ability to identify and locate appropriate geographic information sources. Statistical treatment and interpretation of geographic data.
Research skills Writing, thinking and the presentation of information
Subject Specific Skills The context and process of geographical research, the acquisition, analysis and presentation of geographical data, key concepts in geography
Team work Team work and group discussion may be involved in some lectures and project sessions.

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 4