aerial view of garden of stones hong kong

Human Geography BA

3-4 years

As a Human Geographer, you will learn to think critically and creatively about the world we live in. This degree combines human geography with optional modules from related subjects to provide a deep understanding of the place of geography in the contemporary social sciences.

Human Geography BA, 3-4 years

As a Human Geographer, you will learn to think critically and creatively about the world we live in. This degree combines human geography with optional modules from related subjects to provide a deep understanding of the place of geography in the contemporary social sciences.

Start date:

2024

Course information

Typical offer ABB

UK fee £9,250

UCAS code L720

International fee £20,250

Institute code L34

Taught by School of Geography, Geology and the Environment

Course description

Course description

This degree is perfect for you if you want to focus exclusively on the social science elements of geography. It allows you to study human, digital and environmental geographies alongside Sociology, Politics and International Relations, and Modern Languages. By doing so you will explore pressing contemporary geographical questions like migration, environmental governance, sustainability, and to also consider them from a wider interdisciplinary social science perspective.

Throughout your degree, there will be an emphasis on critical thinking and the development of a suite of quantitative and qualitative research skills. We encourage and train our students to be both critical and creative in their research approaches and methods.

We use innovative teaching and assessment methods and encourage our students to reflect upon the role Human Geographers play in the modern world.

This degree involves no physical geography, although some modules operate at the interface of physical and human geography (e.g. Climate Change). If you like the sound of this degree, but do not want to ignore physical geography completely (e.g. you would like to retain the option to focus on physical geography later), you should also consider the Geography BA course.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

  • A/AS-levels: ABB. Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level. Geography not essential.
  • EPQ with A-levels: BBB + EPQ at grade B.
  • GCSE: Grade C/4 in English Language and Maths.
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass relevant diploma with a minimum of 45 credits at level 3, 30 of which must be at Distinction.
  • BTEC Nationals: Pass Diploma with DDM.
  • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 30 points. Must include a minimum of grade 4 in SL Maths or 3 at HL if 4/C not held at GCSE. Must include a minimum of grade 4 in English A or 5 in English B if minimum of grade 4/C not held in English Language at GCSE.
  • T Levels: Distinction in Science (with an Occupational Specialism in Laboratory technician).

Other official national and international qualifications considered from across the world. You can review some of the qualifications we accept on our countries page and English Language equivalencies.

If your qualification or country is not listed, please contact us for more information, including the name and result of the qualification you have studied.

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year – Society and Culture run by the Global Study Centre. The GSC provides academic support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester.

Second year entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

Contextual offers

The University of Leicester is committed to providing equitable opportunities for all applicants from all backgrounds. We make contextual offers to support students who may be impacted by the area they live in, their personal circumstances or who have completed one of our progression programmes. These offers are usually one or two grades lower than the standard entry requirements. To qualify for a contextual offer, you must apply for an eligible course and meet specific criteria – check if you’re eligible.

Selection Process

When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

Applicants are not normally interviewed. If you receive an offer you will be invited to visit the department.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.5 or equivalent, with at least 6.0 in each component score. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability.

If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries list

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

UK Students

Starting in 2024

  • £9,250 in your first year. Tuition fees are subject to government regulations and may change in future years
  • Year Abroad: your fee will be £1,385 for that year
  • Year in Industry: your fee will be £1,850 for that year

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

Additional costs

If you choose the field trip to Berlin as one of your third year option modules, the cost is expected to be about £650.

There is an additional cost to students as a contribution towards core fieldwork modules in years one and two. In year one this is a maximum of £100. In year two this is a maximum of £250. These are the total contributions for the academic year, regardless of the number of fieldcourses (i.e. they are not the costs or contributions per fieldcourse)

International Students

Starting in 2024

  • £20,250 per year
  • Year Abroad: £5,062.50, which is 25% of the full-time tuition fee
  • Year in Industry: £3037.50, which is 15% of the full-time tuition fee

If you are resident outside the UK and the Republic of Ireland, you will need to pay a deposit of £3,000 to secure your place. This will be subtracted from your total tuition fee.

From 2022 onwards, EU nationals will pay the International fee. If you are an EU national with settled or pre-settled status under the EU settlement scheme, you may qualify for the UK fee (subject to criteria).

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

Additional costs

If you choose the field trip to Berlin as one of your third year option modules, the cost is expected to be about £650.

There is an additional cost to students as a contribution towards core fieldwork modules in years one and two. In year one this is a maximum of £100. In year two this is a maximum of £250. These are the total contributions for the academic year, regardless of the number of fieldcourses (i.e. they are not the costs or contributions per fieldcourse)

Careers and employability

Careers and employability

Geography and Environmental Scientists are highly competitive in the job market as their degrees furnish them with a range of highly sought-after skills. As well as studying topics that consider all of the major global challenges of the 21st century, our graduates are equipped with a range of subject specific and transferable skills (e.g. teamwork, communication, resilience, planning, problem solving).

Key statistics

  • 97% of graduates in work or further study after 15 months
  • Average salary 10 years after graduation is £40,100
  • Recent employers include: Environment Agency, Yorkshire Water, Aon, National Library of Scotland, KPMG, NHS, Cabinet Office, Department of Work and Pensions, HSBC

Supported by the University’s Career Development Service, employability is embedded in all of our curricula from year one:

  • The Leicester Award for Employability personal development programme is embedded in core year one and year two modules, providing students with opportunities to reflect on their motivations, personality traits, transferable skills, and future career goals
  • All students have lifetime access to and support from our award-winning Career Development Service.
  • The year two Geography in Education module provides specific work experience within local schools, ideal for students interested in teaching or working with young people in their future careers
  • We have a dedicated School Careers Tutor who works with the Career Development Service to support careers fairs, disseminate job opportunities and career development courses, and to provide practical information.
  • We run a School-wide annual careers day; recent speakers have included the Civil Service, Selfridges & Co, Hatch Regeneris, the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, the Environment Agency, Ordnance Survey and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.
  • All of our degrees allow include a four year “with a Year in Industry” option, where the third year of the degree is spent on a work placement.

The School has established links with many businesses and Government departments, including Natural England, the European Space Agency, the Home Office and the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission.

Case studies

Small profile picture of Megan

Megan Hudson (BSc Geography) is now a General Manager at Fenland SOIL; a farmer-led, multistakeholder research organisation that aims to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from lowland agriculture. Her work involves a wide range of activities, spanning finance and marketing, meeting and day to day work with growers and stakeholders, through to working on research projects with universities and organisations like Natural England.

Small profile picture of MominMomin Ashraf (BA Geography) is a member of the GIS intelligence team at the Satellite Applications Catapult in Didcot. His work is focused on international development and humanitarian aid. He uses satellite and spatial data to monitor issues such as water security, internally displaced people and conflict zones. His skills and interests in GIS allowed him to work in a range of industries during his year in industry, and it was his GIS, Remote Sensing and Information Visualisation courses that provided the key skills shaping his career (skills in critical industry-standards such as QGIS, ArcGIS, Tableau, SQL, Python).

Small profile picture of TaraTara Ahmad (BA Human Geography) joined the Lidl UK Graduate Programme. Tara had a particular interest in economic geography and during her BA Human Geography degree she particularly enjoyed the Economy Society and Space module, which focuses on the commoditisation of foodstuffs.  During her second and final years she was a course representative and a co-chair of the student-staff committee. This meant lots of scope to present, collaborate and share her work, providing the confidence to move forward into her future career.

Career Development Service

Get career-ready at Leicester with guidance from our award-winning Career Development Service. We're here to give you a lifetime offer of support, even after graduation. Our team of specialist careers advisers and mentors will help you every step of the way. From supporting you with CVs and interviews, to volunteering opportunities and placements, we’re here to help you reach your professional goals.

Related courses

Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Development Goals

We are committed to providing skills and knowledge to help prepare you tackle global challenges. We have mapped our undergraduate degrees for learning which aligns to the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

This degree includes learning which relates to the following UN Sustainable Development Goals:

Find out more about the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Course structure

Year 1

Year 1

This degree is focused on the social science elements of Geography (Human Geography) and the place of Geography within the wider social sciences. As such, it combines Human Geography modules within complementary courses from Politics, Sociology and Modern Languages. There are no Physical Geography modules on this course. Please note that the number of Geographers taking some supplementary subjects may be subject to a cap in numbers. 

Core modules

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

In year 2 you will study a diversity of Human Geography themes, including environmental justice, gentrification, and the politics of development. Your second year will also involve an international field trip.

Core modules

* Qualifying mark of 40% in dissertation proposal is required for progression into year 3

Option modules

Choose five option modules from:

* Students can only choose this module if they have completed French Language (Beginners) in their 1st year.

** Students can only choose this module if they have completed Spanish Language (Beginners) in their 1st year. Places on this module are not guaranteed due to limited provision.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year Abroad or in Industry (optional)

Year Abroad or in Industry (optional)

If you want to, you can spend your third year studying abroad at one of our partner institutions or working in an industrial placement (eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2). Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in three years.

NB. A year spent abroad or on an industrial placement still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

Year Abroad

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our Study Abroad team.

Year in Industry

A Year in Industry gives you the opportunity to stand out from the crowd when it comes to applying for graduate jobs with work experience incorporated into your programme of study. If this is for you, in Year 2 you will take a module in which we prepare you for that year in work and support you with your search for a placement in an industry or organisation relevant to your career aspirations. After your year in industry you will return to university for your final year of study.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

Your final year incorporates a blend of teaching and research and is constructed largely from optional modules. These allow you to build you degree in a way that most interests you. There is scope to develop specialisms, or remain a generalist. In semester 1 you will develop you own research project with your supervisor as part of the final year dissertation. You will then choose from a wide range of optional modules.

Core modules

Option modules

Semester 1

Choose two option modules from:

Semester 2

Then choose four option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Fieldwork

Fieldwork

Fieldwork is integral to any Geography degree. In the field you develop new skills and apply learning from the classroom to real world problems. Our field trips will be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences for both Human and Physical Geography students. 

All of our core field course costs are subsidised by the University of Leicester. Optional field courses in Year 3 do come with an additional cost, although there are bursaries available.

If you study on the Geography BA or Human Geography BA, your field trips can include: 

Sheffield (Core - Year 1)

On this residential field trip, you will study Sheffield's fascinating environmental and industrial heritage, via urban exploration and training in creative visual methods.

International field course (Core - Year 2) 

In previous years this course has been run in New York City and Vancouver. In this module students examine topics like multiculturalism, gentrification, migration and settlement in the city. This week-long residential field course includes a variety of day trips that interrogate the composition and evolution of global cities.

Berlin (Option - Year 3)

The Berlin field course is an optional course that considers geopolitics at the urban scale and the ways in which Berlin’s (and Germany’s) geopolitical history continues to shape the geography of the city. The field trip considers Cold War geopolitics, the Berlin Wall and the division of Germany on the city. It also examines Germany’s colonial legacies; the geopolitics of nature; sexual geopolitics; and, everyday life in the DDR (East Germany). The module is an opportunity to apply critical and creative geographical approaches to researching the politics of housing and migration in Berlin.

students on a geography field trip

And you’ll be pleased to know our staff are involved in field-based research worldwide, ensuring that our teaching draws on active field experience.

Fieldwork locations may vary and are subject to availability.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Why Leicester?

Hear from our Geography BSc graduate Lucy, as she talks about module flexibility, worldwide field trip opportunities, and reflects on her time studying at Leicester.

You will definitely want to join the Students' Union's Geography Society which offers a great mix of academic support and social events. Leicester GeogSoc is affiliated to EGEA, a massive European network providing great opportunities for exchanges and professional development.

Our School operates an Open Door policy, meaning you can access support when you need it.

Fieldwork is integral to all of our degrees. Our field trips will take you to some of the world's most remarkable environments, such as the Amazon Rain Forest and Death Valley in California.

Job prospects for graduates of the School of Geography, Geology and the Environment are excellent: 97% of our Geography students and 95% of our Geology students are employed (or studying for a Masters degree) six months after graduating. (DLHE)

Geography and Environmental Science field work highlights

Teaching and learning

You will be taught through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, seminars, practicals and fieldwork. All lecture material is available online through our virtual learning environment Blackboard. Contact time typically averages about 11-13 hours per week. Residential field trips are run by academic staff throughout the degree and provide extended periods of small group teaching in field contexts.

Your work will be assessed through a mixture of methods including, essays, learning diaries, oral and poster presentations, mock journal articles, popular science articles and a final year individual (supervised) dissertation project. Coursework is mainly undertaken on an individual basis. However, a number of modules (especially field-based modules) involve assessed group project work.

Fieldwork

Fieldwork is integral to any Geography degree. In the field you develop new skills and apply learning from the classroom to real world problems. Our field trips will be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences for both Human and Physical Geography students. All of our core field course costs are subsidised by the University of Leicester. Optional field courses in Year 3 do come with an additional cost, although there are bursaries available.

If you study on the Geography BA or Human Geography BA, your field trips can include:

Sheffield (Core - Year 1)

On this residential field trip, you will study Sheffield's fascinating environmental and industrial heritage, via urban exploration and training in creative visual methods.

International field course (Core - Year 2) 

In previous years this course has been run in international locations such as New York City. In this module students examine topics like multiculturalism, gentrification, migration and settlement in the city. This week-long residential field course includes a variety of day trips that interrogate the composition and evolution of global cities.

Berlin (Option - Year 3)

The Berlin field course is an optional course that considers geopolitics at the urban scale and the ways in which Berlin’s (and Germany’s) geopolitical history continues to shape the geography of the city. The field trip considers Cold War geopolitics, the Berlin Wall and the division of Germany on the city. It also examines Germany’s colonial legacies; the geopolitics of nature; sexual geopolitics; and, everyday life in the DDR (East Germany). The module is an opportunity to apply critical and creative geographical approaches to researching the politics of housing and migration in Berlin. 

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. To help with your independent learning, you can access the Library and our social study spaces in halls of residence.

Academic support

Our Centre for Academic Achievement provides help in the following areas:

  • study and exam skills
  • academic writing
  • presentations
  • dissertations
  • numerical data skills
  • referencing sources

Our AccessAbility Centre offers support and practical help for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties, including physical, mental health or mobility difficulties, deafness, or visual impairment.

Teaching staff

This is a research-led degree. You will be taught by an internationally recognised experts in their fields, whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. Our third year specialism modules map closely to staff’s current research and to our cutting edge facilities where you will get hands on experience. PhD research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is informed by the research we do. You can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff profiles.

Apply now

Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
Course Human Geography Qualification BA Duration 3 years full-time UCAS Code L720 Availability How to apply
Course Human Geography with Year Abroad Qualification BA Duration 4 years full-time UCAS Code L720 Availability How to apply
Course Human Geography with a Year in Industry Qualification BA Duration 4 years full-time UCAS Code L720 Availability How to apply

Data about this course

student stood outside on a residential street

Studying at the University of Leicester has allowed me to go to some amazing places! Getting the chance to actually visit the places we were studying made the course so much more engaging and exciting.

Isobel

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