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College of Arts and Sciences


Though geography is a very old discipline, going back at least to the classical era, The Department of Geography at the University of South Carolina is on the cutting edge of a new era for the discipline as it has become one of the leading centers for geographic information systems, satellite-based remote sensing, and other 21st-century technology. Much more than maps, the study of geography impacts business, the environment, and how we interact with the world around us.

While there aren’t many job titles that are “geographer,” there are many types of positions that fit well with a degree in geography, including urban planner, cartographer, GIS specialist, climatologist, transportation manager, environmental manager, science/travel writer, National Park Service ranger, real estate appraiser, librarian, teacher, Foreign Service officer.  There are also a variety of positions within the federal government and state agencies.

The Department of Geography at the University of South Carolina is the only institution in South Carolina that offers a B.A., B.S., M.A., M.S. and Ph.D. in geography.

Undergraduate: B.A. and B.S.

In this undergraduate degree program, students explore the fundamentals of geography through courses in weather and climate, landforms, and human-environment relations. Undergraduate courses are also offered in political and regional geography, as well as systematic areas such as economic, urban, historical, and recreational geography.  In addition, classes are offered in computer cartography and air photo interpretation/remote sensing.

Graduate: M.A., M.S., and Ph.D.

The Department of Geography offers training in fundamental geographic skills and the opportunity for advanced study and research in a variety of fields within the discipline. Areas of emphasis reflect faculty interest and competence and include the following: cartography and visualization, GIScience, and remote sensing; cultural, economic, political, and urban geography; environmental science and climatology; and environment-society relationships. The department has a strong record of success in graduate placement in private- and public-sector careers as well as in the academic sphere. To assist in its educational role, the department administers the GISciences Research Laboratory, the Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute, the Climate Research Laboratory, the Biogeomorphic Research Laboratory, the Center for Excellence in Geographic Education and the South Carolina Geographic Alliance. In addition, the department has strong linkages with the Southeast Regional Climate Center and the geographic information functions of the university.


Department Chair
John Kupfer

Undergraduate Director
Greg Carbone

Graduate Director
Jean Ellis

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