Our fieldwork philosophy.
All core fieldwork is included within your tuition fees and includes an international residential trip. All optional field classes incur additional costs.
We believe that fieldwork is integral to a Geography degree. The subject fundamentally aims to understand the world we live in.
Experiential learning underpins and reinforces understanding of theory and concepts gained in the classroom: fieldwork stimulates academic curiosity, hones observation and measurement skills, exposes students to a range of challenges and processes with global societal importance and allows students to make connections between physical and social processes at range of scales.
Our fieldwork locations reflect our belief that fascinating Geography exists on our doorstep as well as further afield. At a local scale, the Peak District provides a natural laboratory ideal for studying a range of physical processes and phenomena, while Sheffield itself is a city shaped by a rich social, cultural and industrial heritage.
Within the UK, we run day trips to Spurn Point and the Humber Estuary to investigate coastal processes and management, and students also get the opportunity to spend the day volunteering at a local co-operative, learning about and getting involved in community activities such as gardening, brewing and cooking. We also run longer 4-5 day trips to explore creative, experimental and subversive ways of seeing urban geographies in Liverpool and the glacial, geological and environmental processes that have shaped the beautiful Lake District.
Internationally, students have the opportunity to study the impacts of earthquakes and melting glaciers in New Zealand, dryland, fluvial and coastal process in southern Spain, grass-root development issues in Uganda, geographies of memorialisation and urbanisation in Berlin and rural and urban geographies in Morocco. All of our core field classes at Levels 1 and 2 are included in the price of the University tuition fees. Optional field classes at Level 3 are not included in the fees: to be inclusive as possible we run trips at a range of prices, and also provide financial support for students via our departmental scholarship scheme.
At Level 1 you will learn and apply essential field skills such as qualitative techniques, environmental sampling and laboratory analyses in Sheffield and the surrounding Peak District. This includes a 3-day residential field class to the Peak District early in the first semester that also helps you to get to know staff and your fellow students.
At Level 2 you will be introduced to more advanced techniques and have the opportunity to develop and apply your research skills in an international location such as Morocco, Berlin, Spain or Ireland, depending on your course.
At Level 3 optional fieldwork provides advanced, in-depth experiences in locations such as the Galapagos, New Zealand, Uganda, Liverpool and the Lake District. Many of these include group data gathering and independent research projects, allowing you to develop crucial transferable skills, as well as specific subject knowledge.
Find out more about fieldwork specific to your course:
Costs for additional field classes
Costs for optional field classes vary, depending on a number of factors, including but not limited to destination and number of students participating. Current estimated costs for 2018/19 vary between £150 - £2400 per student, with the latter figure representing the cost of the Galapagos. Some factors which may impact on the cost of field trips are beyond our control such as airline fare increases. We try to keep the costs as low as possible, and to inform students as early as possible of the cost of any optional field trips that they have planned to take.