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Geography and Earth Science

Welcome to the Geography and Earth Science program!

What is Geography? 

Geography is the study of the earth and the ways people interact with it and on it.  Geographers are deeply interested in the ideas of space and place. Geography involves more than memorizing states and capitals. It’s a unique way of looking at the world and finding answers to geographic questions. 

Physical geographers concentrate on the earth and topics such as weather, climate, soils, landforms, and the natural environment.

Human geographers concentrate on people and their activities, such as culture, economics, political systems, and history.

The technologies of Geographic Information Science, such as cartography, Geographic Information Systems, and remote sensing are used by both physical and human geographers to bring a spatial perspective to our knowledge of the World.

Become a Geography major! 

You can choose from undergraduate degrees in Geography (BA or BS), Geography and GIScience (BS), and a teaching subject endorsement for Education degrees. We also offer Minors in Geography,  GIScience, and Environmental Science.  See our new degree brochures below for more information!

The program is located in Copeland Hall, which includes laboratories for GIS, Remote Sensing, Cartography, and Physical Geography. There are six full-time faculty members with diverse teaching and research interests. 

For more information, please contact Geography at (308) 865-8355. 

7-12 Teaching Endorsement  BS Degree Brochure    BS Degree Brochure    GIScience Degree Brochure


News and Events 

2015 Student Research Day  

Ten Geography students presented research at the 17th Annual UNK Student Research Day on Wednesday, April 15.  Click here for more information.

2014 Student Research Day  

Seven Geography students presented research at the 16th Annual UNK Student Research Day on Thursday, April 10. Congratulations to Zach Davidson for winning Second Place in the Behavioral and Social Sciences division!  The title of his research poster is "College Student Debt by Region in the United States." Click here for more information.

2013 Student Research Day  

Twelve Geography students presented research at the 15th Annual UNK Student Research Day on Thursday, April 4. Congratulations to Nicholas Stoll for winning First Place in the Behavioral and Social Sciences division!  The title of his research poster is "Just What the Doctor Ordered: The Role of GIScience in the Market Area Analysis of an Omaha Health Care Clinic."  Click here for more information.


2012 Geography Day for Area 4th Grade Students 

On November 8, 2012 approximately 40 4th grade students from Park Elementary School in Kearney visited the Geography Department to learn more about Nebraska geography.  They enjoyed refreshments and a special lesson on our state. 


2012 Special Lecture Presentation  

Dr. Wiley Thompson will present "Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response: What I've Learned and What We Can Do Better” on Tuesday, April 10, in Copeland Hall Room 130. Dr. Thompson is an Army colonel, military aviator, and currently the head of the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering at West Point.  His field work includes leading the U.S. military aviation response to the 2005 Kashmir earthquake and working with NGOs in the 2010 Haitian earthquake response to study civil-military cooperation.  He is an environmental geographer with research interests in hazards, disaster response, development, and conflict.  Wiley is married, has two teenagers, and holds a PhD in Geography from Oregon State University.


2012 Geography Awareness Week Events  

Nov. 11-17th is Geography Awareness Week. Please join the Geography Program in celebration! We are excited to share the following lecture with UNK and the wider community.

Dr. Bob Watrel, from the South Dakota State University, will present "'The 2012 Presidential Election in Geographical, Historical, and Political Perspective" on Tuesday, Nov 13 at 2:30 p.m. in Copeland Hall Room 130.