Honour School of Geography

A

  • 1. The examination in the Honour School of Geography shall always include, as stated subjects to be offered by all candidates:

    • [For students starting before MT 2017: Geographical Research] [For students starting from MT 2017: Geographical Thought: Histories, Philosophies, Practices ]

  • 2. Candidates shall be required to offer, in addition to the above subject, two foundational courses chosen from the following list:

    • (i) Earth System Dynamics

    • (ii) Space, Place and Society

    • (iii) Environmental Geography

  • 3. Candidates shall be required to offer, in addition to the above subjects, and after giving due notice of the subjects they select, three Optional Subjects chosen under arrangements determined by the board by regulation.

  • 4. The examination shall be partly practical.

  • 5. No candidate shall be admitted to the examination in the Honour School unless either

    • (a) he or she is a Senior Student, or

    • (b) he or she has passed or been exempted from the First Public Examination.

  • 6. The examination in the Honour School shall be under the supervision of the Social Sciences Board.

B

  • 1. All candidates will be required to offer the following subjects:

    • i. [For students starting before MT 2017: Geographical Research] [For students starting from MT 2017: Geographical Thought: Histories, Philosophies, Practices ]

    • ii. Two foundational courses chosen from the following list: Earth System Dynamics; Space, Place and Society; Environmental Geography

    • iii. Three Optional Subjects to be chosen from a list published by the department (3 papers). Submitted work will also be required in three subjects.

    • iv. A Geographical Dissertation in accordance with the detailed regulations given below. The Dissertation will be treated as the equivalent of two papers.

    • v. A fieldwork report in accordance with the detailed regulations below.

  • 2. Candidates are required to have undertaken field-work as an integral part of their course. Candidates may be examined viva voce.

  • Theses, practical notebooks or extended essays previously submitted for the Honour School of Geography may be resubmitted. No thesis, practical notebook or extended essay will be accepted if it has already been submitted, wholly or substantially, for another final honour school or degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution.

  • 3. The requirements for each subject are as follows:

    • I. [For students starting before MT 2017: Geographical Research: A course on the practice of human, physical. and environmental geographical research. Emphasis will be placed on the provision of research skills and the relation between conceptual and methodological issues and the practice of research.] [For students starting from MT 2017: Geographical Thought: Histories, Philosophies, Practices: A course that examines the historical emergence and philosophical underpinnings of contemporary geographical thinking and practice. ]

    • II. Earth System Dynamics: The dynamics of climatic, ecological and geomorphological systems, studied over a wide range of timescales and covering past, present and future changes. Emphasis will also be given to interactions between these components of the earth’s system.

    • III. Space, Place and Society: A human geographical perspective on space, place and society, taking account of relevant and major concepts in geographical thought, and acknowledging differing theoretical approaches. Specific cases and practices will be introduced at a range of geographical scales.

    • IV. Environmental Geography: The nature of environmental issues, their causes and consequences, and the development of policies to manage the environment. A range of case studies will be used across various geographical scales.

    • V. Candidates must offer three Optional Subjects to be chosen from a list to be published by the Head of School not later than the end of the Trinity Full Term preceding the candidate’s admission to the Final Honour School. One paper of three hours will be set on each subject. Each candidate must also submit an individual piece of work (as specified on the rubrics for each optional subject) for all three Optional Subjects to the Chair of Examiners in the Final Honour School of Geography, c/o the Examination Schools, High Street not later than 12 noon on the Monday of the first week of the Trinity Term in which they present themselves for examination. The submitted work should not duplicate material in the candidate’s dissertation. Instructions for the submitted work will be published by the Chair of the Undergraduate Teaching and Examination Committee not later than the end of the Trinity Full Term preceding the candidate’s admission to the Final Honour School. Information about the Optional Subjects and submitted work will be published on the departmental website by early October.

  • Each candidate will submit

    • 1. A fieldwork report of 4,500 words based on research undertaken as part of the field trip during Trinity Term of the year in which a candidate is admitted to the Honour School. [For students starting from MT 2018: Non-textual and multimedia materials shall not constitute more than ten minutes of viewing/reading time.] The requirements for the fieldwork report will be published on the departmental website at the beginning of Michaelmas Full Term in the year in which the candidate is admitted to the Honour School. The fieldwork report must be submitted no later than 12 noon on the Friday in the eighth week of Trinity Term in the year preceding that in which they propose to take the examination.

    • 2. A Geographical Dissertation on a Selected Topic.

    • The Dissertation, exclusive of bibliography, maps, and statistical appendices, must not be more than 12,000 words. [For students starting from MT 2018: Non-textual and multimedial materials shall not constitute more than ten minutes of viewing/reading time. ]The attention of candidates is drawn to the fact that limited rather than large areas are more likely to allow for adequate depth of study. The Dissertation should embody original practical work based on primary data (e.g. data collected in the field, archival materials, census data, etc.), and not be based on secondary material (e.g. text books, published local histories, published papers in learned journals, government or local government reports).

    • Candidates having first secured the approval of their tutors are required to submit to the Head of the School for approval, not later than noon on Friday at the end of the fourth week of the Trinity Full Term in the year preceding that in which they propose to take the examination, an outline of approximately 500 words of the proposed Dissertation. Special permission must also be sought from the Head of School for any substantive change in the original proposal.

    • The Dissertation must be firmly bound. It must be the work of the author alone and aid from others must be limited to prior discussion as to the subject and sources and advice on presentation. Every candidate shall sign a declaration of originality to the effect that the Dissertation is his or her own work, and this declaration shall be presented with the Dissertation.

    • Candidates must submit two copies of their Dissertation not later than 12 noon on the Monday in the first week of the following Hilary Term, to the Chair of Examiners in the Final Honour School of Geography c/o Examination Schools, High Street, Oxford, OX1 4BG.