shortcut to content
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


Page address:

During your undergraduate career in Geography at Minnesota State-Mankato you will become trained as a scientist who studies the distributions and interrelationships of all phenomenon observed on out planet. Geography is a spatial science that endevours to understand the nature and character of physical space, its measurement, and the distribution of things within it. Geography is also an integratve science meaning it draws on all other disciplines of knowledge to answer questions about our world. Geographers specialize in many different subdisciplines like Biogeography (draws on knowledge from the field of Biology), Geomorphology (draws on knowledge from the field of Geology), Historical Geography (draw on knowledge from the discipline of History), Economic Geography (draws on knowledge from the field of Economics) and many more. It is the spatial and integrative mindset/methods you will learn that will make you a Geographer and allow you to understand more and to answer the important questions about our world.

As an undergraduate Geographer you will be exposed to the realms of Geographic study focused on both physical and social science. Through this you will be exposed to a unique bridge that Geography serves as it links the natural and social sciences through its examination of people and their environment. This linkage has become increasingly relevant as issues like resouce availability, climate change, natural hazards, urban development, environmental protection, agricultural practices and energy production/useage/efficiency, are some of the most important issues we face today. Geography seeks to understand and solve the problems of modern society like these. The department's courses are especially suitable for students interested in how Geography can be used to understand and address many of our modern issues.

We offer four Bachelor's degree pathways in Geography in this Department. We offer both a traditional B.A. and B.S. in Geography and a more highly focused Professional B.A. or Professional B.S. All of these degrees may be fine-tuned towards specific areas of interest and for prospective teachers. There are several options available within the degree program with three clear concentrations available to students.

  • Resource and Environmental Studies, incorporating courses in Environmental Resource Issues, Conservation and Environmental Assessment
  • Geographic Techniques incorporating Cartography, Air-Photo Interpretation, Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Climatology and Weather Analysis incorporating Meteorology and Applied Climatology courses

For those students interested in landforms and surface processes (Geomorphology) in the Earth Science Progam (administered by the Geography Department) is also available. This would include students interested in the processes that shape landscapes (rivers, glaciers, landslides, wind, rock weathering, etc.).

Students may also consider a more general training where specific regions of the world are studied including Asia, Europe, Africa, Russia and its neighbors, Latin America and Anglo America. Within most of the courses offered in the Department you will acquire a global literacy. Students have often taken a double major option, of have followed an open studies program. Each option prepares the student for a different career track. In recent years, an increased emphasis is being placed on the rapidly expanding fields of computer mapping, geographic information systems, resource use, evaluation and management, and environmental assessment. ...In short, Geography is a HOT field with many opportunities. Click on this link to see the kinds of jobs Geographers are getting today!

Picture left: Geography undergrads digging a snowpit to analyze seasonal accumulation in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado, with Professor Don Friend (Geography 440 Field Studies: Colorado)