McMicken College of Arts & SciencesMcMicken College of Arts & SciencesUniversity of Cincinnati

McMicken College of Arts & Sciences


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Geography (Urban Economic Emphasis)

Geography focuses on the spatial dimensions of human activities and their interactions with physical landscapes. The interrelationships between humans and their environments uniquely allow geographers to link the social and physical sciences. Geographers analyze information represented on maps -- maps representing data produced in the traditional form (computer-generated or drawn by hand) or images generated by satellites (remote sensing).

Students in the urban-economic BA track will develop specialized knowledge in urban land use models and the effects of spatial processes on historical and contemporary urban phenomena as well as how to apply fundamental economic models linked to spatial data.


Quick Info

Program Code


Real-World Learning Components

Required internship(s), Research


4 years

Admission Criteria



Main Campus

Freshman Class Profile for this Major

3.044 - 3.660 (4 pt. scale)
21.0 - 26.0
980 - 1180


McMicken College of Arts and Sciences


401 Braunstein
PO Box 210131
Cincinnati,OH  45221-0131
Phone: 513-556-3421

Student Success Factors

Students are successful when they have an interest in learning about and understanding (1) world events, (2) local events within cities, (3) the urban, global, economic and political processes underlying world and local events, (4) human impact on the physical environment and (5) when they have the skills necessary to process, display and analyze geographic information.

Career Possibilities

Geography provides a good educational background for students interested in a variety of careers in business, various government agencies (federal, state, county, city), nonprofit agencies or as college and university professors. Geography provides strong preparation for professional and graduate schools (law, medicine, business, geography or other physical or social sciences). Employment for students with strong geographic computer skills (GIS) is particularly strong. Examples of geography-related jobs in various areas include:

  • U.S. Agency for International Development
  • Audubon Society
  • Bureau of Land Management
  • Bureau of the Census
  • Cartographer
  • Geographic software programming
  • Housing and urban development
  • Market research
  • Sierra Club
  • Teaching
  • Travel industry

Additional career options are listed on the Center for Exploratory Studies website.

Major Details

Geography majors are encouraged to develop individualized programs within one of the three geography BA tracks in consultation with the geography undergraduate advisor. The Department of Geography offers the following tracks/specializations:

  • BA - Environmental and Physical Geography (15BA GEOG-E)
  • BA - Urban and Economic Geography (15BA GEOG-U)
  • BA - Human Geography (15BA GEOG-H)

The UC McMicken College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) offers flexible degree requirements, which allow for and highly encourage students to pursue multiple areas of study. Free electives allow for enough credits for students to pursue a minor, certificate program or even complete a second major. Some of the most common pairings are listed below.

  • Anthropology
  • Communication
  • History
  • International human rights
  • Journalism
  • Languages or area studies
  • Psychology
  • Security studies
  • Sociology

Minor Details

Students minoring in geography choose a concentration in one of the following: human geography, urban and economic geography, environmental geography, regional geography or geographic information systems (GIS).

Students must pass all required geography courses with a C or better.


These tools assist students to identify course requirements and individual progress toward completion of academic programs. It is important to utilize these resources with personalized guidance from a UC academic advisor regularly to ensure timely graduation..

My Degree Audit - for confirmed and current students

My Transfer Course Equivalencies - for students considering transfer to UC

UC Schedule of Classes - search course availability and descriptions

Curriculum Guide Versions:

Geography (BA - Urban Economic Emphasis) Curriculum Guide

Predominant Program

    A&S College Core Requirements
    • ENGL1001, English Composition, EC, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Freshman Seminar (freshmen only), 3
    • ENGL2089, Intermediate Composition, EC, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Foreign Language Sequence, DC, 10 - 12
    • XXXXxxxx, Social Science (SS) Course (not GEOG), SS, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Natural Science (NS) Course, NS, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Humanities (HU) Course, HU, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Humanities (HU) or Fine Arts (FA) Course, HU, FA, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Historical Perspectives (HP) Course, HP, 3
    • HISTxxxx, HIST Course, 3
    • XXXXxxxx, Interdisciplinary Course, 3
    Geography (BA - Urban Economic Emphasis) Major Requirements
    • GEOG1001, Introduction to Physical Geography, SE, NS, 3
    • GEOG1004, Introduction to Human Geography, DC, SS, 3
    • STAT1034, Elementary Statistics I, QR, 3
    • STAT1035, Elementary Statistics II, QR, 3
    • GEOG3041, Economic Geography, 3
    • GEOG3060, Cities, 3
    • GEOGxxxx, Regional Geography Course (choose from GEOG 2000-2037 or 1021), 3
    • GEOGxxxx, Courses from Urban Economic group below, 12
    • GEOGxxxx, Spatial Techniques Course from group below, 3
    • GEOG6075C, Quantitative Geography and Spatial Statistics I, 3
    • GEOG5000, Geography Capstone I, 2
    • GEOGxxxx, Capstone Completion Course from group below, 2
    Free Electives
    • XXXXxxxx, Free Electives, 35 - 37
    Regional Geography
    • XXXX2xxx, 2000 level course(s), 3
    Urban Economic Courses
    • GEOG3044, Consumption, Culture and Society, 3
    • GEOG4061, Globalization and Cities, 3
    • GEOG4062, Sustainable Cities, 3
    • GEOG6041, Contemporary Issues in Economic Geography, 3
    • GEOG6044, Geographical Dimensions of Consumption and Consumerism, 3
    • GEOG6051, Urban Habitat, 3
    • GEOG6060, Urban Development, 3
    • GEOG6061, Global Cities, 3
    • GEOG6062, Urban Sustainability, 3
    • GEOG6063, Urban Problems, 3
    • GEOG6064, Geography of the Inner City, 3
    • GEOG6069, Niehoff Seminar, 3
    Spatial Techniques
    • GEOG5079, Human Geography Research Methods, 3
    • GEOG6071C, Introduction to Geographic Information Sciences, 3
    • GEOG6074, Computer Analytical Cartography, 3
    • GEOG6076C, Principles of Remote Sensing, 3
    Capstone Completion
    • GEOG5007, Geography Capstone II: Portfolio, 2
    • GEOG5008, Geography Capstone II: Senior Research Project, 2

UC Advantages and Special Opportunities

Students in the UC McMicken College of Arts and Sciences enjoy many benefits afforded through study at a research-intensive institution ranked among the nation's top 25 public research universities. UC's urban, Tristate location offers exciting opportunities for global education, research and service learning, while its student-centered focus includes an 11:1 student-faculty ratio, a nationally recognized Center for Exploratory Studies and a highly successful First Year Experience program that teaches critical skills for first-year students and provides connections with important campus resources.

Special Programs

Geography majors often engage in study abroad opportunities or international field trips. Some students pursue professional internships arranged on an ad hoc basis.

Admission Requirements

Freshmen applicants, please visit the Admission Requirements page for more information.

Transferring to UC Requirements

Admission to A&S is generally available for any off-campus student who was admissible directly from high school and has 2.0 GPA cum and a 2.0 in the most recent institution.

Students who were not admissible directly from high school must have:

  • 24 semester (36 quarter) hours earned
  • at least a 2.0 GPA cum and a 2.0 at most recent institution
  • successfully completed one semester of English composition or its equivalent
  • successfully completed one semester of math with a grade of C- or higher that minimally meets on of the following:
    • Mathematical Literacy (MATH 0029)
    • Intermediate Algebra (MATH 0034)
    • Algebra for College (MATH 0039)
    • Students may also take the UC Math Placement exam, but must score an MPT of 420 or higher

University transfer scholarships are available to those who meet specific requirements and ANY admitted A&S transfer student might qualify for an A&S transfer scholarship. Deadlines and eligibility criteria are online via the previous links.

Changing Majors Within UC

Admission to A&S is generally available for University of Cincinnati students enrolled in other colleges if they were admissible directly from high school, have a cumulative 2.0 GPA and a 2.0 in their most recent UC college.

Students who were not admissible directly from high school must have:

  • at least a 2.0 GPA in all college-level courses (both at UC and at other institutions)
  • successfully completed one semester of English composition or its equivalent
  • successfully completed one semester of math with a grade of C- or higher that minimally meets on of the following:
    • Mathematical Literacy (MATH 0029)
    • Intermediate Algebra (MATH 0034)
    • Algebra for College (MATH 0039)
    • Students may also take the UC Math Placement exam, but must score an MPT of 420 or higher

Graduation Requirements

To graduate from the UC McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, students must:


  • Earn at least 120 credits. This can include transfer credit, AP credit and free electives, but does not include preparatory coursework. Students who have met all other degree requirements must continue earning credit until the total number of their earned hours comes to at least 120.
  • Attain a 2.0 grade point average for all courses taken at the University of Cincinnati.
  • Be in good academic standing, that is, not on either academic probation or disciplinary probation or suspension.
  • Complete the residency requirement by earning at least 30 credits after matriculating into the college.
  • Complete all of the requirements of at least one major (see major requirements above).
  • Complete the College Core Requirements.
  • Submit an application for graduation to the registrar's office by their posted deadline.

Application Deadlines

UC operates on a semester system, with three 14-week grading periods beginning in late August, early January, and early May. While midyear admission is possible, fall semester is generally the best time to enter the college, since many course sequences begin in that semester. Applicants to the UC McMicken College of Arts and Sciences who are enrolled or who were previously enrolled as degree-seeking students in A&S or in other UC colleges should apply for admission directly to A&S (in French West, 2nd Floor). All other applicants who wish to earn an undergraduate degree from A&S should apply through the Office of Admissions (3rd Floor, University Pavilion).


The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.