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Department of Geography and Environmental Science

Frequently Asked Questions

Get the answers to the most frequently asked questions about geography and environmental science at Liverpool Hope University.

Why study Geography?

Geography is one of the most exciting and fast-moving academic subjects. It is also one of the most relevant to the world around us. A training in Geography helps us to understand how the physical world works; how people interact both with each other and with the physical world; how landscapes (both physical and human) evolve; and how people interact with the environment and the ways in which the environment needs to be managed and conserved. No other subject takes in so many different perspectives and brings them all together to create a unique way of looking at and understanding our world. Whether your interests are more towards physical geography or human geography or the environment, you will find that we offer you the chance to develop your interests and develop an enriched understanding of what is taking place on our planet.

Why study Tourism?

Tourism is the world’s largest industry, worth over $3 trillion annually worldwide, and has become one of its biggest sources of employment. Tourism is something which has shaped the world as we know it today and continues to have huge impacts on people, economy and the environment. 

Studying tourism opens the door to understanding one of the forces that has shaped the modern world.  In addition, there is no better city in which to study Tourism than Liverpool. The legacy of Capital of Culture in 2008 has made Liverpool one of the most dynamic and exciting cities in the country and it continues to develop new arts, heritage, and cultural attractions, retail developments and luxury hotels. It is an ideal ‘laboratory’ in which to study the changing nature of contemporary tourism

How will I be taught?

You will come across a wide variety of teaching situations on the Geography, Tourism and Environmental Science courses. During the first year, all students come together for formal lectures.

Students are also assigned to a small seminar group with a designated tutor who is responsible for their academic welfare throughout the year. In the second and third years, similar formats are adopted, depending on the number of students on a unit. Some units are largely run as lectures, others take a more workshop/seminar approach, others are entirely taught through fieldwork.

How will I be assessed?

Most units are assessed using a mixture of coursework and exams, although there are a number of units which are assessed 100% through coursework. There are many different types of coursework assessment, including essays, report writing, group and individual presentations, fieldwork assignments, poster presentations, and brochure analysis.

What are the Geography and Tourism tutors like?

We are a small and friendly team of tutors with a wide range of academic interests and specialisms. We take pride in being accessible to students and offering them a level of support which isn’t always found at larger universities. We have an established tradition of accepting students with a diverse range of entry qualifications and an excellent record of supporting them in attaining a degree at the end of three years study. One of the most common comments from our graduating students is how committed and helpful the tutors have been during their time at Hope. The quality of student support is indicated in the excellent scores the Geography Department receives in the National Student Survey.

Is fieldwork compulsory?

Yes! Fieldwork is an enjoyable and essential part of Geography, Environmental Science  and Tourism.  It is a way of gaining important skills and experience. In the first year, all students take part in a week’s fieldwork in North Wales.  Geography/Environmental Science students look at aspects of the physical and human environments in a remote rural area, while tourism students look at tourism demand and participation in a rural area.  There are also day visits to the local area (Liverpool, Chester,  New Brighton and the Sefton Coast).

In the second and third years, the fieldwork component depends on the individual options – some units have no fieldwork element, some have one-day fieldtrips and some include residential fieldwork. Students taking BSc Geography will take part in an ‘International Fieldwork’ course (residential fieldwork either in Malta or Romania).  Tourism and Tourism Management students will visit Malta for a week in their third year. 

Students with disabilities are not excluded from fieldwork, and special arrangements will be made for them depending on their particular needs.

Will I need to buy a lot of equipment and books?

Students need access to appropriate learning resources and for most courses there is a recommended course text. These are available in the library but students are advised to buy certain key books – many students share this expense or find second hand copies. On fieldwork, for safety and comfort reasons, students will need access to waterproof outer clothing, a rucksack and, for most locations stout, waterproof boots. In North Wales this equipment can be borrowed from Hope’s field centre. Students are advised on these needs early on the course.

What sorts of jobs can I get when I graduate?

A degree in Geography opens the door to a wide range of careers - some specifically related to Geography, or other more general careers in business, management and finance. Many employers value the 'all-round' abilities of Geography graduates.

In recent years our students have got jobs such as:

  • Local Authority Planning Officer
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Local Authority Environmental Officer
  • National Health Service Manager
  • Housing Officer with local Housing Association
  • Conservation Officer with local wildlife trust
  • Tutor with the Field Studies Council
  • Local Authority Geographical Information Systems officer
  • Environmental Health Officer
  • Police Graduate programme
  • RAF Graduate programme
  • Local Authority Regeneration Officer
  • Further Education Lecturer
  • Private sector Management Trainee programme
  • Tourism planning with Local Authority

In addition, many of our graduates go on to train as Geography teachers and a number of them are now Heads of Geography in schools around the country.

Increasing numbers of our students go on to postgraduate study. We offer a Masters courses within the Geography subject area in Environmental Management. Other students have gone on to Masters courses at other universities in subjects such as Hazard Management, Central and Eastern European studies, Planning Studies and Cultural Geography. A number of our graduates have also gone on to doctoral level (PhD) study.

A degree in Tourism or Tourism Management opens the door to a wide range of careers. Possible careers include:

  • Arts/Heritage Management
  • Tourism/Leisure Marketing
  • Sports and Leisure Centre Management
  • Public sector tourism/leisure planning and policy
  • Urban Regeneration
  • Attractions Management
  • Airline/Transport Management
  • Events Management
  • Resort/Destination Management
  • Tourism Marketing and Promotion
  • Hotel and Hospitality Management
  • Outdoor Recreation Management

In addition a degree in Tourism gives students a wide range of transferable skills which open up career opportunities in the wider private/commercial sectors. There are also increasing opportunities to study tourism and leisure at postgraduate level.