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What is Geography?

Ancient geographers coined the word geography meaning “to study the earth.” Geography is the study of Earth’s landscapes, peoples, places and environments. It is quite simply, about the world in which we live.

Why major in Geography?

Geography is more than just locating places on the map. Geography is unique in bridging the social sciences with the natural sciences and provides a holistic insight into the world. It is an interdisciplinary science by nature and provides an ideal framework for relating to other fields.

A person with a geography degree can find exciting careers in the following areas:
Emergency Management Environmental Manager
Demographer Meteorologist / Climatologist
Marketing Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
National Park Ranger Transportation Management
Urban Planning Cartographer
Real Estate Education


This area of study might be for you if:
  • Are you curious about places in the world?
  • Do you like to look at maps?
  • Do you prefer the window seat on airplanes?
  • Are you interested in foreign areas?
  • Do you like to work outside?
  • Are you a problem solver?
  • Are you good at seeing connections among seemingly unrelated processes?
  • Can you adapt to rapid technological change?
  • Do you try to see the big picture?
  • Are you interested in connections between humans and the environment?

What skills will I gain from having a Geography Emphasis?

  • The ability to develop a spatial perspective.
  • The ability to develop a global perspective.
  • The ability to view problems from a number of angles.
  • The ability to write a professional standard document, as well as use effective verbal communication.
  • The ability to work within deadlines by completing projects and fieldwork.
  • The independence gained from working abroad.
  • The ability to work within a group through fieldwork or projects.
  • An analytical approach to people and their environment, which means a geographer should also have developed an objective aptitude for management.



Book Icon Available Programs

For program specific information click on the program below:

Associate of Applied Science
Geospatial Technology

The Associate of Applied Science degree in Geospatial Technologies will prepare students for careers and transfer degrees in geographical information systems (GIS). In this interdisciplinary program, students select a pathway specific to their interest – GIS Analyst, GIS Programming Specialist, GIS Coordinator, or Aerial Sensing Data Analyst. In this profession, graduates are responsible for collecting geospatial data, producing maps, analyzing spatial data, coordinating GIS projects, providing technical expertise to clients or users, and providing programming and software development expertise.

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Associate of Arts

Geography is the study of Earth's landscapes, peoples, places and environments. It provides a knowledge of the Earth's physical and human systems and of the interdependency of living things and physical environments. The Associates of Arts Degree in Geography is designed for students who are planning to transfer to a four-year college or university and pursue baccalaureate degree programs in geography or related fields. The curriculum fulfills the freshman and sophomore general education requirements for most four-year colleges and universities. In addition, the program offers a one-year certificate in Geographic Information Systems. As part of this degree program, students must complete the requirements of the Ohio Transfer Module in order to graduate.

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Short-term Technical Certificate
Geographic Information Systems

The Geographic Information Systems (GIS) short-term certificate will provide students with both theoretical and practical applications of GIS. The certificate will cover the foundational concepts in GIS, including the principles of cartography and GIS, database management and analysis, data acquisition, and manipulation of georeferencing and geocoding.

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Specialized Learning Spaces

Center for Applied Social Issues (CASI) Research Center is a computer classroom/lab in Building 12, Room 363 that supports the program/course outcomes of quantitative literacy in Geographic Information Systems and in Geography (GIS).

Description of the specific services or activities of the center or lab:
  • Interactive, computer generated assignments and assessments are provided by Full-time and Part-Time faculty members associated with each of the disciplines.
  • Globes & Maps essential to the completion of Map Quizzes in all Geography courses.
  • Students access ESRI software essential to all Geographical Information Systems related courses.
  • Course textbooks for all Geography courses that are offered for the semester are available for students to use.
  • Student workers with an advanced knowledge of Geography help with course materials and assignments, including GIS software.
Other Learning Resources:

Geography LibGuide

Service Learning Projects

What is learning that sticks? How can we teach in a way that students can carry learning with them as they navigate life? One way to deepen the learning is to integrate service learning into our courses. In our GIS courses (GEO1107, 1209, 2210), students completed service learning as a part of individual projects (regular coursework and honors), class projects, and team collaborations. The projects focus on technical and professional course outcomes and competencies related to individual courses and each is assessed using a detailed rubric. The service learning experience comes in many flavors  and our students have completed a wide range of projects. One project provides a glimpse into learning that is happening right now. This term, students in advanced spatial analysis are consulting with Tony Kroeger, Senior Planner with the City of Dayton, to create a walkability index for a section of downtown Dayton.  Walkability studies are a tool useful in urban planning, but are labor intensive and have never been done in Dayton’s planning department. For this project, the students reviewed academic papers to ground their walkability index in past studies, organized their methods and work, collected and compiled data, analyzed the data and now are in the process of documenting their findings and creating maps. This work was presented to Dayton’s Community and Planning Department and will be used in local project planning.

Honors Program

Sinclair has an Honors program and all of the geography courses are offered for honor’s credit.  Qualified students have in the past done service learning projects, presented in professional conferences, and have gone on international trips.

More Information

Gamma Theta Upsilon Honor Society

Gamma Theta Upsilon (GTU) is an international honor society in geography. Gamma Theta Upsilon was founded in 1928 and became a national organization in 1931. Members of GTU have met academic requirements and share a background and interest in geography. GTU chapter activities support geography knowledge and awareness.

GTU’s Goals are:

  1. To further professional interest in Geography by affording a common organization for those interested in the field.
  2. To strengthen student and professional training through academic experiences in addition to those of the classroom and laboratory.
  3. To advance the status of Geography as a cultural and practical discipline for study and investigation.
  4. To encourage student research of high quality, and to promote an outlet for publication.
  5. To create and administer funds for furthering graduate study and/or research in the field of Geography.
  6. To encourage members to apply geographic knowledge and skills in service to humankind.