Degree Requirements

Geography Ph.D. Degree Requirements

The aspirant is expected to demonstrate proficiency in research and achieve a teaching competence in geography. The student may concentrate in 1 area or may offer a concentration in a second area in the department or an outside discipline. Whatever the choice, the student develops the plan of research and study with the advice and supervision of professors in the chosen area(s) of concentration who also sit on the student’s examination and dissertation committees. A minimum of 30 hours of course and seminar work in addition to dissertation credit usually is required beyond the M.A.

Research Skills Requirement

Research skills are important elements of any graduate program and should complement the student’s research topic. Coursework necessary to meet this requirement should commence early in the program. Selection of a particular Research Skills option must be approved by the student’s advisor and student’s committee members. A students Research Skills requirement may be met by one of the following:

  1. Demonstrate a reading, writing, and speaking capability in a single foreign language sufficient to enable the student to do field work without an interpreter. An examination for competence, including written and oral portions, will be conducted by the appropriate language department having expertise in that language.
  2. Demonstrate a satisfactory capability in one research skill from the list below. The actual courses must be approved by the student's advisor and committee members.
      • a. Computer Science--complete a computer-programming course in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (e.g., C++, Fortran, or Visual Basic) with a grade of B or higher and create a substantial computer program that illustrates a geographic application of that language. Both the course and computer program must be approved by the Computer Programming Committee of the Department of Geography.

        b. Mathematics--complete nine hours of courses at the 500-level or above with a grade of B or higher.

        c. Statistics--complete nine hours of courses outside the Geography Department at the 500-level or above with a grade of B or higher.

        d. An outside discipline relevant to the student's field(s) of specialization within geography (e.g. anthropology, biology, economics, geology, history, or psychology) -- complete nine hours of courses at the 500-level or above with a grade of B or higher (Atmospheric science courses may be used for this option, but not courses listed or cross-listed as geography.) Students may petition the Graduate Affairs Committee to have nine hours of courses at the 500-level or above in multiple departments fulfill this requirement.

      Students whose native language is not English may, in some cases, use their native language to fulfill Research Skills but only if the language is considered an adequate research tool for their program and is endorsed by the student’s advisor and committee members. Using a native language to fulfill the Research Skills requirement must have GSC approval.

      In addition, the department requires that any PhD student admitted after Fall 2011 must successfully complete the Responsible Scholarship seminar offered by the department.

Handbook for Graduate Students

Detailed information on departmental regulations is included in Policies for Graduate Study in Geography at the University of Kansas, available on the department's website.

Contact Info

Department of Geography

Lindley Hall
1475 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 213
Lawrence, KS 66045-7575
785-864-5143
785-864-5378
kugeog@ku.edu
http://www.geog.ku.edu/
Johannes Feddema, Chair
785-864-5534
Stephen Egbert, Associate Chair
785-864-4252

Department of Geography

Lindley Hall
1475 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 230
Lawrence, KS 66045-7545
785-864-5143
785-864-5378
kugeog@ku.edu
http://www.geog.ku.edu/
Peter Herlihy, Undergraduate Coordinator
785-864-4292

Department of Geography

Lindley Hall
1475 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 213
Lawrence, KS 66045-7575
785-864-5143
785-864-5378
kugeog@ku.edu
http://www.geog.ku.edu/
Nathaniel Brunsell, Graduate Program Director
785-864-2021
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