The BSc (Hons) in Geography offers rich insights into the social and natural worlds and into the fascinating interplay between them. You will cover a wide range of topics, including:
glaciers and ice ages
climate and weather
environmental change and management
population change, migration and border politics
urbanisation, development and geopolitical conflict
socio-spatial inequalities (widening gaps in wealth, health and wellbeing)
Geography is studied up to Honours level in both the Faculty of Science (BSc) and the Faculty of Arts (MA). Students who have a background in the Sciences or who wish to study Geography alongside Science subjects at St Andrews should apply for the BSc. For those interested in studying Geography alongside Arts subjects, the MA in Geographymay be of interest instead.
More information for 2020 entry will be available in September 2019. For information on the current year of entry for this course, see the 2019 page.
These grades are the overall standards required to consider you for entry. Find out more about Standard, Minimum and Gateway entry requirements using academic entry explained and see which entry requirements you need to look at using the entry requirements indicator.
Standard entry grades: AAAB
Minimum entry grades: AABB
Gateway entry grades: BBBB
Standard entry grades: AAA
Minimum entry grades: ABB
Standard entry grades: 38 (HL 6,6,6)
Minimum entry grades: 36 (HL 6,5,5)
We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry on to our programmes, please see our entry requirements for more information.
For degrees combining more than one subject, the subject with the higher entry requirements determines the grades you need. You will also need to meet any further subject specific entrance requirements as outlined on their pages.
If English is not your first language you will need an overall IELTS score of 6.5, with a minimum score of 6.0 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English Language qualification.
You must also meet the Faculty of Science minimum qualifications. These vary depending on which qualifications you hold.
SQA National 5 (B) or equivalent in English and two SQA Highers from the following:
Computing Science or equivalent
GCSE (B or 5) in English, English Language or English Literature, and one GCE A-Level from the following:
Computing Science or equivalent
Passes in other examinations at equivalent levels and subjects may be accepted by the Dean of the Faculty. More information on how to apply via other entry routes or accreditation of prior learning and experience can be found on the University’s entry requirements web page.
St Andrews students meet with their Adviser of Studies at the beginning of Semester 1 in September to complete advising – a compulsory part of the matriculation process. After module choices have been decided, a timetable will be allocated indicating the dates and times of classes.
The University of St Andrews as a whole was voted top in the UK for student academic experience in The National Student Survey 2018 as 94% of St Andrews final year students gave the University top marks for the quality of the learning and teaching experience.
The University has secured a TEF Gold Award for the quality of teaching and the undergraduate experience.
Reflecting the broad nature of Geography, graduates leave St Andrews with a diverse and unique skill set, putting them in a very strong position in the jobs market.
Employers seek out Geography graduates because of their rare combination of quantitative and qualitative skills, their ability to integrate and analyse diverse data, their understanding of human and environment interactions, their competence in GIS and spatial analysis, and their ability to think critically and creatively about the big social and environmental challenges facing us.
Career paths include:
tourism and leisure
planning and development
business and finance
The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students as well as a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills.
Geography students may participate in the University-wide St Andrews Abroad programme. You may also have the opportunity to participate in the School Abroad exchange programme. For information about study abroad options, please see the Study Abroad site.
From the outset, the University of St Andrews offers an array of events and opportunities which result in a truly unique student experience. Students participate in a range of traditions, notably, the red academic gown and the academic family, where older students adopt first year students as ‘children’ and help guide them in a system of mentoring. These traditions and the choice of over 150 sports clubs and student societies to choose from ensures a community feel amongst students from first year onwards.
Students of Geography may be interested in joining GeogSoc, the University’s Geography society. This student-run organisation offers opportunities to meet other enthusiastic geographers at every level of study and to meet staff members outside of lectures so you can really get involved in the School.
The School of Geography and Sustainable Development is housed within the Irvine Building in the historical heart of the University between St Salvator's Quadrangle and St Salvator's Hall. Students will attend tutorials, seminars, lectures and individual meetings with tutors in this building.
The town of St Andrews itself has lots to offer. As the campus is located around town, walking around you encounter ancient and modern buildings and areas of greenery and seaside which provide a rich, beautiful backdrop to learning. If you want a change of scenery, St Andrews' position near surrounding towns and cities such as Anstruther, Dundee and Edinburgh make it ideal for getting to know more about Scotland.
“Geography encompasses so many different subjects and different points of view that it will help you gain a broader perspective on the world. The lecturers are so passionate about the subject. There are so many opportunities to go out and experience the topic we are discussing in person, and it helps to learn about the subject and how it is relevant to our everyday lives.”
Mia (Michigan, USA)
School of Geography and Sustainable Development University of St Andrews Irvine Building North Street St Andrews KY16 9AL
As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online. (PDF, 72 KB).