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Master of Arts in Geography

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  • Objectives
    The Department views the greatest strength of geography, as a discipline, as its ability to integrate and apply knowledge across the interface of the Earth's social and ­environmental systems.
  • Practical experience
    There is a Field Camp associated with this program.
  • Academic Title
    Master of Arts in Geography
  • Course description
    Program Requirements

    The specific program requirements of the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies are:

    5.0 credits, which must include:

        * One of GEOG 5000 or GEOG 5001
        * M.A. thesis (2.5 credits) which must be defended at an oral examination
        * GEOG 5905 - Masters Research Workshop
        * 1.5 other credits

    In addition to the formal requirements, M.A. students are required to attend the Departmental Seminar series, and the Graduate Field Camp.

    GEOG 5000 [0.5 credit]
        Approaches to Geographical Inquiry
        A review of the major philosophical perspectives shaping research and explanation by geographers. Particular attention is paid to interpretations of social structure and human action, the nature of the biophysical universe, and the interaction between human beings and their environments.

    GEOG 5001 [0.5 credit]
        Modeling Environmental Systems
        Methods and problems of research on the physical environment, with illustrative material taken from the atmospheric and surface earth sciences. Issues such as the identification and behaviour of environmental systems, temporal and spatial scale, experimental method under field conditions, and simulation and model development are considered.

    GEOG 5003 [0.5 credit]
        Critical Approaches to Qualitative ­Geographical Research
        Development of critical research skills through consideration of the relationship between theory and method. Examination of: interviewing, personal narratives, participatory research, focus groups, participant observation, archival research and visual methodologies. Practical experience in selected methods.

    GEOG 5005 [0.5 credit]
        Global Environmental Change: Human Implications
        Global environmental change: its significance for societies, economies and international relations. Value systems underlying environmental discourse; political economy of the environment; sustainability and security. Environmental diplomacy and grassroots environmentalism. Regionalized impacts of pressures on natural environments; challenges of adaptation. (Also listed as INAF 5701.)

    GEOG 5006 [0.5 credit]
        Special Topics in Geography of the
        Environment

        Research seminar on a selected theme within geographical approaches to environmental analysis. Topics will vary from year to year. Consult departmental web site for current details.
     
    GEOG 5103 [0.5 credit]
        Hydrologic Principles and Methods
        Advanced physical hydrology with emphasis on atmospheric moisture, precipitation, evaporation, infiltration, soil water physics, snow hydrology and runoff generation. Analytical approaches and methods to solve practical hydrological problems.

    GEOG 5104 [0.5 credit]
        Advanced Biogeography
        Current methods and theories in paleoecology are examined: dendrochronology, paleolimnology and other techniques for examining past climates and environmental condition. Numerical approaches to climate change studies.

    GEOG 5107 [0.5 credit]
        Field Study and Methodological Research
        Field acquisition and analysis of geographic material; supervised field observations and methodology. (Individual or group basis, by special arrangement.)

    GEOG 5201 [0.5 credit]
        Special Topics in the Geography of Development
        Research seminar within geographical approaches to development focusing on a selected theme or region. Topics vary from year to year. Consult departmental web site for current details.
     
    GEOG 5303 [0.5 credit]
        Geocryology
        Development of ground ice in permafrost regions of Canada; ice segregation and pore-water expulsion during ground freezing; analytical and numerical approaches to modeling permafrost conditions.
        Prerequisite: GEOG 4108 or permission of the Department.

    GEOG 5307 [0.5 credit]
        Soil Resources
        Physical, mineralogical, chemical, and other properties of soils will be studied in agricultural, environmental, geomorphological and/or geotechnical contexts, as relevant to the students enrolled.

    GEOG 5400 [0.5 credit]
        Territory and Territoriality
        Contemporary geographical and international relations theorizing is challenging notions of boundaries and territories in the political organization of modernity. Using contemporary writings on geopolitics, security, sovereignty, self-determination and identity politics this course investigates territoriality as a political and intellectual strategy. (Also listed as INAF 5402.)

    GEOG 5406 [0.5 credit]
        Special Topics in Cultural Geography
        Research seminar on a selected theme within cultural (including historical) geography. Topic varies from year to year. Consult departmental web site for current details.

    GEOG 5500 [0.5 credit]
        Globalization and Localities
        A review of recent theoretical and methodological debate in this field and analysis of the changing geography of production, employment, and social consumption in advanced economies. Policy issues will be considered.

    GEOG 5502 [0.5 credit]
        Special Topics in Geography of Globalization
        Research seminar on a selected theme within geographical aspects of globalization. Topic varies from year to year. Consult departmental web site for current details.

    GEOG 5700 [0.5 credit]
        Sustainability and Development in the Circumpolar North
        The Circumpolar Arctic Region is undergoing rapid political, economic, social and technological development, which impacts sustainability. Climate, contaminants and biological diversity focus international attention, Nunavut, the Russian North, major developments, and international circumpolar regime formation; emphasis on environment and development.

    GEOG 5800 [0.5 credit]
        Spatial Information Systems
        Advanced concepts and problems involving spatial information systems. Topics may include: data access and implementation issues; integration of GIS and environmental models, and managing uncertainty; spatial decision support systems; visualization; quantitative spatial analysis.
        Prerequisite: experience with GIS and permission of the department.

    GEOG 5803 [0.5 credit]
        Remote Sensing and Image Analysis
        Topics may include: advanced sensors and calibration; radiometric data correction; spatial and temporal image analysis; non-parametric and object-based classification; spectral unmixing; scaling; physical-optical modeling; data fusion; selected applications in vegetation, urban, water, and geologic mapping.

    GEOG 5804 [0.5 credit]
        Geographic Information Systems
        GIS for students with no previous experience. Includes data formats and structures, input/output and analysis capabilities, and GIS applications.

    GEOG 5900 [0.5 credit]
        Graduate Tutorial

        Tutorial, directed reading or research, offered on an individual basis, to meet specific program needs; may be taken in one of the areas of specialization of the Department.

    GEOG 5905 [0.5 credit]
        Masters Research Workshop
        A workshop which focuses on the challenges of research design in the various sub-fields of geography. The workshop will culminate with the development and defence of a thesis research proposal.

    GEOG 5906 [2.5 credits]
        M.Sc. Thesis
        Thesis supervision will be given in Physical Geography, as listed in the introductory section of this department's program description.

    GEOG 5909 [2.5 credits]
        M.A. Thesis
        Thesis supervision will be given in all areas of specialization of the Department, as listed in the introductory section of this department's program description.

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