UFV Academic Calendar 2013/14

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Physical Geography Honours
(for Bachelor of Science degree students)

Entrance requirements

Students can apply to the Physical Geography Honours program when they have met the following criteria:

1. Completion of 90 credits that apply to the Bachelor of Science, including at least 26 credits in geography.

2. A minimum 3.33 GPA in all courses required for program completion.

Interested students are encouraged to seek out advice on the Physical Geography Honours program from Geography faculty or a Science Advisor as early as possible in their coursework, and to apply to the program at the earliest possible entry date.

How to apply

To apply, students will need to provide the following:

1. An honours program application package (available from the department assistant).

2. A portfolio that includes coursework (laboratory assignments, written papers, etc.) from select completed geography courses. The portfolio is a tool to be used by the student, the Geography Honours Advisory Committee, and potential faculty project advisor to identify areas of improvement and potential project topics, as well as writing and research strengths and weaknesses. Portfolio guidelines are available from the department.

Students should submit application materials to the department assistant. The Geography Honours Advisory Committee will then arrange for a project supervisor. Interested students are encouraged to approach a departmental faculty member appropriate to their research interests who may serve as their honours supervisor.

Program requirements

In addition to the requirements for the Bachelor of Science and for the Physical Geography major, Physical Geography Honours students will need to complete the following:

1. 132 credits, including:

  • A minimum of 64 credits of Geography;
  • A breadth requirement of 3 upper-level courses (9-12 credits) to be completed in another Science discipline (biology, chemistry, CIS, computing science, mathematics, physics); and
  • GEOG 354.

2. An original research project, completed as part of:

  • One of the following courses: GEOG 400G, 400J, 402, 410, 417, 458, or 491; and
  • GEOG 493.

3. Minimum CGPA of 3.33.

Research project

Successful completion of a research project is required prior to graduation. This project is developed in consultation with a faculty supervisor and demonstrates a student’s advanced skills and knowledge in a given area of physical geography. 

Students will complete this project in two courses. In the first course, the student will design and collect data for their project. This will be completed as part of GEOG 491 (Honours Research Design and Data Collection), or an equivalent third-year internship or fourth-year research-intensive course approved by the department. Students will then register in GEOG 493 (Honours Research Project in Physical Geography/GIS) to complete the data analysis and project write-up.

Each honours student will disseminate their research findings in a presentation to an academic audience (e.g. professional conference or department seminar) as well as through an academic research poster or alternative. Following project completion and presentation, the honours supervisor in consultation with a second reader, will assign a grade for GEOG 493.

GPA requirement

A CGPA of least 3.33 or higher, including the mark awarded for the final research project, must be attained in order for an honours designation to be awarded.

Program outline

This section specifies the honours requirements only. Please refer to the Bachelor of Science section for information on additional requirements.

Lower-level requirements: 49 credits

Course Title Credits
GEOG 101 Weather and Climate 4
GEOG 102 Evolution of the Earth’s Surface 4
 or GEOG 116 Introduction to Geology
GEOG 140 Introduction to Human Geography 3
GEOG 201 Introduction to Climatology 4
GEOG 202 Introduction to Geomorphology 4
GEOG 211 Environmental Science 3
 or GEOG 257/CMNS 257 Environment: Science and Communications  
GEOG 252 Explanation in Geography: Quantitative Methods 4
GEOG 253 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems 4
MATH 270/
STAT 270
Introduction to Probability and Statistics 4
PHYS 101 Introductory General Physics: Mechanics and Fluids  
 or PHYS 111 Mechanics 5
One pair of:   10
BIO 111 Introductory Biology I  
  and BIO 112 Introductory Biology II  
 or CHEM 113 Principles of Chemistry I  
  and CHEM 114 Principles of Chemistry II

Upper-level requirements: 52-56 credits

Course Title Credits
GEOG 353 GIS Applications 4
GEOG 354 Approaches in Human Geography 4
GEOG 433 Geography of Selected Regions 4
GEOG 491 Honours Research Design and Data Collection (see Note 1) 4
GEOG 493 Honours Research Project in Physical Geography/GIS
STAT 315 (formerly MATH 315) Applied Regression Analysis (see Note 2) 3
One of:   4
GEOG 302 Fluvial Geomorphology  
 or GEOG 304 Coastal Geomorphology  
One of:   4
GEOG 303 Principles of Hydrology  
GEOG 307 Urban Climatology  
   or GEOG 308 Climate Change and Variability  
One of:   4
GEOG 315 Soil Process or Function  
 or GEOG 317 Biogeography  
One of:   4
   GEOG 402 Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology  
   GEOG 410 Plant Ecology  
   GEOG 417 Wetlands  
   GEOG 419 Paleoecology  
   or GEOG 453 Remote Sensing of the Environment  
One of:   4-6
GEOG 396 Global Development Studies: Canada Internship  
GEOG 398 Global Development Studies: International Internship  
GEOG 452 Field Methods and Techniques  
 or GEOG 470 Field Studies in Geography  
One elective course: Physical geography (GEOG 302, 303, 304, 307, 308, 315, 317, 335, 402, 410, 417, 419, 453) (see Note 3)  
Electives Three upper-level science courses to be completed in a single discipline (i.e. biology, chemistry, CIS, computing science, mathematics, statistics, computer science, physics) (see Notes 4 and 5) 9-12

Note 1: Students are not required to complete GEOG 491 if they have already completed one of the following courses: GEOG 400G, 400J, 402, 417, 419, or 458.

Note 2: Students choosing Mathematics or Statistics as their breadth requirement cannot include STAT 315 (formerly MATH 315) as one of their breadth courses.

Note 3: Elective not required if the student has already completed GEOG 491 and met the requirement for at least 36 additional credits in upper-level Physical Geography.

Note 4: Students planning to apply for a Bachelor of Science, Physical Geography Honours, with a view to pursuing graduate studies should expect, in consultation with their honours supervisor, to take any additional Mathematics courses deemed applicable to their area of study.

Note 5: Students planning to apply for a Bachelor of Science, Physical Geography Honours, should consult carefully with a Science Advisor to ensure they satisfy any lower-level prerequisites required for the upper-level courses they expect to take to satisfy the breadth requirements.

Note 6: No more than eight credits may be in directed studies/directed readings (GEOG 480, 482, 483, 484).

Fees and additional costs

See the Fees and Other Costs section. Additional fees for course field trips and miscellaneous lab materials will apply to all students enrolled in Geography programs.

Course listings

For complete details on courses see the course descriptions section.

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