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Fieldwork in your final year is linked to the optional specialist modules that make up our different degree programmes, including what you choose to focus on in your dissertation project. Which modules you select will determine the nature and frequency of the fieldwork you undertake. We will give you all the help and guidance you need to make the right selection for you mid-way through Year 2.

Geography (Single Honours)

In your final year, the Single Honours Geography programme focuses on geographical enquiry and provides you with distinctive insights into both natural processes that shape our physical landscape, and the social, economic, cultural and political forces that mould the societies in which we live.

Almeria, Spain

If you have a particular interest in physical geography, a visit to one of the driest parts of Europe, Almeria province in South East Spain, will provide you with first-hand experience of the features and processes of semi-arid landscapes.

This is one of the driest parts of Europe and thus provides a starkly contrasting landscape to that of the UK. The area is geologically very young, with much of it only emerging from the sea during the past few million years.  The combination of recent and contemporary tectonic activity, drainage development on soft, young sediments and an extreme semi-arid climate will provide you with a fantastic outdoor laboratory as a budding physical geographer.

We begin with tutor-led excursions that provide an introduction to key aspects of the region’s geology, geomorphology and ecology. You will then be able to participate in project days during which you will investigate specific aspects of surface forms and processes distinctive to the area, such as the ecology and micro-geomorphology of a gypsum plateau, river capture-induced slope instability and the geoecology of Badlands. We will then conclude the fieldtrip with student-led excursions to your project sites to enable you to describe and explain your findings onsite.

This field course is led by staff with long-standing research interests in the region and you will benefit from both an expert introduction to the area as well as the opportunity to conduct field projects that are linked to contemporary, cutting-edge research.

Barcelona, Spain

If your interests lie in human geography, the urban cosmopolitan landscape of Barcelona could become a focus of your study. Here your project work would focus primarily on the political, cultural, urban and/or economic geographies of this vibrant city.

You may explore, for instance, contemporary issues of Catalan identity and nationalism; the growth of the knowledge and cultural economies in Barcelona, or the extent to which growth in the city is environmentally as well as economically sustainable.

This field trip comprises a combination of guest lectures and site visits given by academic and practitioner experts in the social, cultural and economic landscape of Barcelona (including representatives from the metropolitan authority).  Following these, students work in project groups to design their own enquiry into one of the urban challenges faced by Barcelona. The projects are presented by each group in formal assessed presentations in the field, and written up as individual project reports upon your return to the UK.

Natural Hazard Management

If you choose to study Natural Hazard Mangement (NHM), you will investigate a wide range of hazards such as flooding, land instability, windstorms, earthquakes and volcanoes.  

Vesuvius and the Bay of Naples 

We offer this exhilarating field experience as one of the core field activities of the third year Natural Hazard Management (NHM) programme. On this week long fieldtrip you will be provided with the ideal opportunity to study volcanic and earthquake hazards, their potential impact on one of Europe's most vulnerable populations and the challenges of effectively managing these hazards.

A team of highly experienced academic staff will guide you on visits to a number of different volcanic sites, including Mt Somma-Vesuvius and Solfatara. You will also have the chance to see the towns of Pompeii, Ercolano and Puzzuoli, which have all been devastated by these natural phenomena in the past.  As a consequence you will gain a deep understanding of the destructive power of volcanoes and earthquakes.

International Development Studies

We offer an International Development Studies (IDS) programme that seeks to provide you with the ideal environment in which to develop a wide range of transferable skills, knowledge and experience needed for a career in the development sector.

United Nations, Geneva

If you choose to study the International Development Studies (IDS) programme, in your final year you will be able to visit the United Nations (UN) in Geneva as part of a core double module, Development in Practice. Over a period of five days you will hear a series of presentations from officers of key UN agencies, which will centre on their work and the challenges with which they are currently faced.

The agencies often include UNHCRWTOPeacekeepingUNICEFUNDPUNEP and WHO. All students have valued the experience of being in the Palais des Nations with its spectacular setting, huge auditoria, galleries, meetings rooms and library. You will be provided with an invaluable opportunity in which to meet diplomats and experience at first-hand what the UN is all about. It's also great for networking!