Master of Arts in Geography
Why study geography?
The MA program develops a concentration in preparation for a career or further study. The student takes courses in several areas of the discipline, as well as at least three courses in an acceptable concentration. Our faculty are integral to graduate studies and have expertise in Human and Cultural Studies with a particular emphasis on Place, Economic Geography, Health and Diaspora, Environmental Policy, Borders and Border Conflicts, and more. Learn more about our faculty on our website.
Admission to Graduate Studies
An applicant seeking to pursue graduate study in the College may be admitted as either a degree-seeking or non-degree seeking student. Policies and procedures of Graduate Studies govern the process of Graduate admission. These may be found in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Please consult the Departments & Programs section of the online catalog for information regarding program-specific admissions criteria and requirements. Special admissions requirements pertain to Interdisciplinary Studies degrees, which may be found in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.
Applicants without prior training in geography are welcome but are required to improve their basic knowledge of the broad divisions of geography: systematic, methodological, and regional. Courses taken to remedy deficiencies may not count toward graduate degrees. Applicants should have a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants with a GPA of less than 3.0 may be considered for admission on a probationary or provisional status.
The following items must be received to complete the application file:
Items 1 through 5 can be submitted on-line.
- A completed Graduate Application Form.
- A current resume/CV.
- A Statement of Interest and Goals. This is included in the on-line application form. The Graduate Studies Committee places considerable importance on the thoughtfulness of your remarks – in particular, we are interested in learning about (1) your specific interests within geography or atmospheric science and why they are important and interesting to you, (2) what you envision as your educational and career objectives and how a degree from KU Geography & Atmospheric Science helps to meet those objectives, and (3) which of our faculty members you think would be an appropriate graduate advisor and mentor.
- A scanned copy of an official transcript can be uploaded at the time of application. Official, degree conferred transcripts will be required prior to the second semester of study. NOTE: Documents uploaded with your application are not considered official. KU does not consider transcripts that come from applicants or that have been in the applicant's possession as official.
- Three confidential letters of recommendation sent by referees who are familiar with your academic and/or professional activities and who can address your likelihood of success in graduate school. If possible, we prefer letters from professors, but applicants returning to school after a lengthy absence may substitute letters from supervisors. Note that it is the responsibility of the applicant to request and to confirm that the required letters have been sent by the deadline. When using the on-line reference form to list references, you must include valid e-mail addresses. Once you have completed and submitted your application, your references will be contacted directly via email with directions for submitting their letters of recommendation.
**Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are not required for the application. Applicants may choose to submit GRE scores if they feel it will help inform the department of their academic abilities. However, choosing not to submit scores will not affect your chances of admission.**
Non-native speakers of English must meet English proficiency requirements as described here.
NON-DEGREE SEEKING STUDENTS
Non-degree seeking students (NDS) are admitted on a rolling basis and must submit an application. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Applicants must include the materials below in their application.
- Copy of official transcripts including proof of a bachelor's degree.
- Proof of English proficiency, if it is a second language.
- Statement of purpose and interests.
Submit your graduate application online. For questions, contact:
Graduate Academic Advisor
Geography M.A. Degree Requirements
The program continues the general training of the undergraduate degree but also provides for concentration in preparation either for employment or further study. The 30-credit-hour minimum for the M.A. thesis program must include at least 6 additional hours within the department beyond the required courses and 6 hours of GEOG 899. A maximum of 6 credits of 500 and 600 level courses may count toward the required hours for the master's degree. If the student elects to take a 500 or 600 level Techniques/Research Methods course (see below), the maximum allowable is 9 credits. The M.A. degree requires a proposal defense and a final oral examination. Students with 6 or more hours of Incomplete are denied permission to enroll until these hours are reduced to the allowable limit (5 hours).
|GEOG 805||Perspectives in Geography||2|
|GEOG 980||Seminar in Geography: _____ (Colloquium for 1 credit hour during each of the first 2 semesters of residence at KU)||2|
|Orientation before classes begin in the fall semester (non-credit)|
|Non-credit 8-hour Responsible Scholarship session held before classes start in the spring semester|
|GEOG 899||Master's Thesis||6|
|One course from the Techniques/Research Methods Concentration:||3-4|
|Advanced Cartography and Geovisualization|
|Applied Multivariate Analysis in Geography|
|Remote Sensing of Environment I|
|Intermediate Geographical Information Systems|
|Qualitative Research Methods|
|Graduate Level coursework, chosen in consultation with an advisor. 6 credit hours of which must be in the home department.||17|
Handbook for Graduate Students
Detailed information on departmental regulations is included in Policies for Graduate Study in Geography at the University of Kansas, available on the department's website.