|Martin Roberge, Ph.D., Program Director||Phone: 410-704-5011|
The program prepares graduates for a variety of geographically oriented applied positions in private business and government agencies and for doctoral programs. The program develops a broad knowledge of physical and human geography as well as the ability to analyze and synthesize spatial data and information from a number of fields.
The Master of Arts in Geography and Environmental Planning has two tracks: Track 1: General Geography, and Track 2: Environmental Geography and Planning. Each track has a thesis and non-thesis plan. Students in the Environmental Geography and Planning Track must select at least one-half of their electives from planning or spatial analysis and techniques courses.
A bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 9 credits in geography, with at least a 3.00 average in all geography courses.
A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00 is required for full admission to the program, and 2.50 is required for conditional admission. All GPA calculations for admission are based upon the last 60 credits of undergraduate and post-baccalaureate study. Send the following admission materials to the Graduate School Office, Towson University,
8000 York Road, Towson, MD 21252:
Two letters of recommendation. Use the Recommendation Form found in the Graduate School Application Packet.
A one- to two-page essay discussing career goals and the planned emphasis within the program.
The Master of Arts degree program in Geography and Environmental Planning is designed to prepare students for doctoral programs as well as for career opportunities in private business and public agencies. The program is oriented toward applied geography and presents possibilities for an emphasis in the following areas: urban and regional planning, urban studies, public policy issues, physical geography, environmental assessment, energy resources, cultural and historical geography, medical geography, population, area studies, cartography and geographic information systems. Graduate students in Geography and Environmental Planning are encouraged to take pertinent course work in other departments. Students may pursue either the thesis program (30 units and a 6-unit thesis) or the non-thesis program (36 units). Detailed information is given in the Graduate Catalog.
Newly admitted graduate students must take diagnostic examinations to demonstrate their knowledge of basic physical and human geography. Diagnostic examinations are administered during the fall and spring semesters. The examinations are used for advising purposes, and to determine whether students are competent or deficient in their mastery of basic geographical knowledge. Should any deficiencies be noted, a course of study will be prescribed by the graduate studies committee. This course of study must be successfully completed before candidates are approved for graduation.
Evidence of quantitative competency. Successful completion of GEOG 375/516 Quantitative Methods in Geography, or an approved equivalent, plus at least one other approved course in computer techniques, statistics, or mathematics are assumed to constitute quantitative competency.
All degree candidates must meet with their academic advisers to file intended programs of study. This should be done prior to, or during, the first semester of course work. The program can be amended in consultation with the adviser.
All graduate students must complete the following Required (12 credits)
GEOG 601 Seminar on Geographical Perspectives (to be taken the first year of graduate study) (3)
GEOG 621 Research Techniques (to be taken the first year of graduate study) (3)
One 600-level human geography seminar or course on any of the following topics: regional, economic, urban, azards,
human ecology, or other course approved by the program director.
One 600-level physical or environmental geography seminar or course on any of the following topics: advanced physical geography, environmental impacts of land use, water resources, or other course approved by the program director.
Courses that satisfy the advanced human and physical/environmental requirements do not include planning oriented
and techniques-oriented courses or seminars.
Graduate students may pursue either a thesis or non-thesis plan of study.
Plan A: Master of Arts with Thesis (minimum 36 credits)
Required (12 credits)
GEOG 898 Thesis (6 credits)
Planned elective courses (18 credits)
Plan B: Master of Arts without Thesis (minimum 36 credits)
Required (12 credits)
Planned elective courses (24 credits)
The non-thesis option requires the presentation of a research paper before the graduate faculty or at an approved professional meeting. The paper must be submitted to the graduate committee for approval for presentation. The graduate faculty will judge the quality of both the paper and the presentation, and vote as to whether the student’s presentation satisfactorily meets the requirement. If the presentation is judged as unacceptable, the student may re-present the paper at a later date set by the faculty
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