Course details

A Levels AAA Other entry requirements
UCAS code F804
Duration 4 years
Fee Look up tuition fee and additional costs
Related subjects Geography

Any questions?

Undergraduate Programmes Officer
Department of Geography
Telephone +44 (0)114 222 7900

Course description

This course is about physical geography. It's focused on the processes that underlie changes in our environment, from glacial processes to atmosphere and ocean dynamics. We teach the practical skills you need to investigate real-world problems such as desertification and sea-level rise.

In the first year, about half the course is made up of compulsory modules in physical geography.

The second and third years are a mix of compulsory and optional modules. Third year options include international field class modules.

In the fourth year, you'll conduct your own advanced research project as part of an active research group. This is excellent preparation for PhD study or a research-related career.

This course is accredited by the Royal Geographical Society.

Modules: what you study and when


Accredited by the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) for the purpose of recognising the delivery of geographical knowledge, understanding, skills, approaches and attributes expected of high quality geography graduates.

Financial help from the University - bursaries

If you're a UK student, you could be entitled to a University bursary. A bursary is the same as a grant - you don't have to pay it back.

How our bursary scheme works

Entry requirements

Qualification Grades
A Levels AAA including Geography or another science subject
A Levels + additional qualifications AAB, including Geography or another science + B in a relevant EPQ; AAB, including Geography or another science + B in Core Maths
International Baccalaureate 36, 6 in Higher Level Geography or another science subject
BTEC D*DD in a relevant subject
Cambridge Pre-U D3 D3 D3, including Geography or another science subject
Scottish Highers + 1 Advanced Higher AAAAB + A, including Geography or another science subject
Welsh Baccalaureate + 2 A Levels A + AA including Geography or another science subject
Access to HE Entry requirements for mature students
Other qualifications Other UK qualifications
Other EU/international qualifications
Other requirements
  • GCSE Maths grade 4 or grade C
  • Science subject includes Biology/Human Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science/Studies, Further Mathematics, Geography, Geology, Mathematics, Physics, Statistics
  • You must demonstrate that your English is good enough for you to successfully complete your course. For this course we require: GCSE English Language at grade C/4; IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component; or an alternative acceptable English language qualification
  • Equivalent English language qualifications
  • Access Sheffield - find out if you're eligible for additional consideration or an alternative offer
If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the department

Modules - what you study and when

The modules listed below are examples from the last academic year. There may be some changes before you start your course. For the very latest module information, check with the department direct.

Course information on Department of Geography website

First year

Core modules:

Geographical Skills
Earth, Wind, Ice and Fire
Living with Environmental Change
New Horizons in Geography

Optional modules:

Exploring Human Geographies
Housing, Home and Neighbourhood
Exploring the Peak District and Sheffield (L1)

Second year

Core modules:

Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing
Geographical Data in the World
Research Design for Geography and Environmental Science
Spain Fieldclass

Optional modules:

Atmospheres and Oceans
Cities and Modernities
Earth Surface Processes
Environment, Society and Politics
Environmental Pollution and Quality
Geographies of Development
Glaciers and Ice Sheets
Past Environmental Change
Political Geographies
Social and Cultural Geographies
Exploring the Peak District and Sheffield (L2)

Third year

Core modules:

Dissertation for Geography& Environmental Science

Optional modules:

Advanced Geospatial Analysis
Advances in Cryosphere Science
Applied Volcanology
Coastal Systems: Processes and Management
Critical Ecologies
Decolonising Geographies
Development and Global Change
Geographies of Consumption
Geographies of Democracy and Citizenship
Geospatial Applications of Drones
Hong Kong Fieldclass
Independent Extended Essay (L3)
Lake District Fieldclass
Landscape Evolution
MATLAB Coding for Geoscience
New Zealand Fieldclass
Philosophy, Aesthetics and Place
Planetary Geoscience
Professional Skills for Environmental Science
Uganda Fieldclass
Urban Exploration
Urban Transformations
Exploring the Peak District and Sheffield (L3)

Fourth year

Core modules:

Research Project
Research Design in Physical Geography and Environmental Science

Optional modules:

Current Issues in Geography and Environmental Science
Independent Extended Essay (L4)
Key Issues in Environment and Development
Managing Climate Change
Sustainable development: a critical investigation
The Science of Environmental Change

The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers.

In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption.

Learning and assessment

These figures give an indication of how you'll learn and be assessed. They're a combined average of all the years of the course. The learning and assessment percentages could vary depending on the modules you choose.

Scheduled teaching 18%
Independent study 83%
Placement 0%

Exams/tests 34%
Coursework 54%
Practical 12%

Department of Geography

Geography is a key discipline for the 21st century. Our Royal Geographical Society accredited degrees offer specialisms that reflect our research expertise and the international agenda. Your course is also highly flexible: you tailor it to your interests. All students are able to choose modules from across our human and physical geography specialisms. But you can also study modules from other disciplines, regardless of the degree you take. Our programmes include training in key skills, such as Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and policy analysis. You'll also receive practical training through fieldwork.

Fieldwork is embedded throughout our programmes. As an international department, we ensure you'll have the opportunity to undertake fieldwork in another country in Year 2, with the option of further international field classes in Year 3. Recent destinations for our fieldclasses include Berlin, California, Greece, Morocco, New York, New Zealand, Uganda and Spain.

As well as group study areas, we have our own computer suites that are equipped with the latest remote sensing, GIS and modeling software packages. We also have state-of-the-art laboratories, including an environment centre in the Peak District and a field centre in Tanzania.

Department of Geography website

What our graduates do

Our programmes will develop your ability to analyse global problems from a range of perspectives and at different scales. Our students gain benchmark geographical skills as well as transferable skills that are highly valued by employers. Your Geography degree can take you into a wide range of careers throughout the world: from policy and government, business and consultancy, to science, sustainability and the environment.

Student profile

"We've just got back from a field class in California where we were in the Mojave desert looking at the landscape...we went with three lecturers who were extremely knowledgeable on drylands."

Bryony Smith

Fieldwork is an important part of the course right from the start. You'll have opportunities to undertake fieldwork in Berlin, California, Greece, Morocco, New York, New Zealand, Uganda, and Spain.

All costs for compulsory field work are included in your tuition fees including an international trip in Year 2.

Additional costs for fieldwork

The costs of all compulsory fieldwork and classes are covered by the department. You will only need to pay for food, spending money, etc.

Costs for optional field classes vary. In 2016/17 they ranged from £1,500 to £2,000 per student.

Some factors, such as airline fare increases, are beyond the department's control and might impact on the cost of field trips. We try to keep the costs as low as possible, and to inform students as early as possible about the costs of optional field trips that they have planned to take.

Apply for this course

Make sure you've done everything you need to do before you apply:

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When you're ready to apply, see the UCAS website: >

Contact us

Undergraduate Programmes Officer
Department of Geography
Telephone +44 (0)114 222 7900

Department website >

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