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Geography explains and describes the Earth. Geographers look at earth-sun relationships, seasons, weather, and other physical aspects of the earth's environment such as climate, topography, earthquakes, and volcanoes.

Geographers ask questions about the earth. First, they answer the question of 'where' or place. Then geographers explain what, why, how, and when about a place using location and place names as the framework for this exploration. The primary tool of geographers is the map, which shows the pattern and distribution of the subject being examined.


There are two broad categories of Geography: Physical and Cultural/Human.

  • Physical geographers look at phenomena relating to the earth's natural environment such as earth-sun relationships, seasons, atmospheric conditions and weather, world climate, soils, flora and fauna, rocks and minerals, earthquakes, volcanoes and mountain building, gradational forces and landform distribution.

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  • Cultural/Human Geographers examine the present-day earth in terms of its people, their organizations, language, religion, economic systems, and settlement patterns.

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All geographers compare and contrast information in order to explain the similarities and differences of various phenomena about the earth as these occur over space and time.

Currently no associate degree is offered with a major in Geography. Geography courses may be used to fulfill requirements for an Associate in Arts degree with a major in Liberal Arts and are transferable to CSU, UC.



A Degree in Geography

What Can You Do with a Degree in Geography?
A degree in Geography prepares one for a career in many fields. The geographer offers a unique perspective on issues and problems dealing with the earth's physical environment and its inhabitants. Analyzing spatial relationships is the geographer's special skill and by using spatial analysis geographers make significant contributions in many professions. The tools geographers use for their spatial analysis include maps, GIS (geography information systems), GPS (Geopositioned Satellites) remote sensing, spatial statistics, and quantitative statistics. Geographers work in all areas of the public and private sector.


With its opportunities for hands-on learning, as well as its interdisciplinary and holistic approach that spans the natural and social sciences, a degree in Geography will prepare you for many types of careers in private industry, government, non-profits, research, and higher education. For example, a geography degree will prepare you to become an environmental consultant, work in industry, join or start a non-profit, start a career in international development, or put your education to work in the US Geological Survey or US Forest Service, among many others. Because few geography jobs have the job title “geographer”, these resources describe some of the job titles and career paths for geographers. 





Geospatial/Remote Sensing/GIS jobs

Environment/Earth Science jobs

International Development



The videos below provide an overview of how geography can lead to a meaningful, fulfilling career, as well as the diverse, often unexpected pathways that lead people to our field. Follow the tabs at left for an overview of career options and resources for geography careers in business, state and local government, federal government, nonprofit organizations and NGOs, and education. (Courtesy of AAG)

A Day in the Life of a Geographer

Joseph Kerski discusses what it's like to be a geographer and why it matters. 04m:35s.

Geographers Making a Difference

Geography is a broad and diverse field, but one thing geographers have in common is using a geographic perspective to have an impact on the world. 04m:24s.

Advice on Jobs in Geography

Start building your career. Listen to some sage advice about jobs in Geography: from defining what you can contribute to any position to doing the geography you feel passionate about.  03m:47s.

Geography Can Take You There

Your Mom said you should major in something that would get you a good job. But don't you want to do something you love? What if you could do both? This short clip presents the message behind the popular careers poster available here.  00m:40s.


Nekya's Story

Geographer Nekya Young tells about her journey to find a college major that would ultimately lead to a meaningful career working with communities, recounting the many opportunities and support she found along the way.  07m:24s.

Journeys into Geography

Many people find the field of geography through various pathways.  This video shares stories of students, recent graduates, and seasoned geographers to illustrate some of the diverse ways that they have found their own journeys into geography. 12m:21s.


Career Opportunities

  • Aerial Photographer/Interpreter
  • Air/Water Quality Control Manager
  • Banking
  • Biogeographer
  • Cartographer
  • City Planner
  • Climatologist
  • Community Developer, Community Organizer
  • Computer Programmer
  • Consultant
  • County Planner
  • Demographer
  • Disasterologist
  • Earth Scientist
  • Economic Geographer
  • Editor
  • Educator
  • Emergency Management Specialist
  • Entrepreneur
  • Environmental Analyst
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Environmental Coordinator
  • Environmental Impact Analyst
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Facilities Planner
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Foreign Services Officer
  • Forestry Technician
  • Geographer
  • Geopolitical Consultant
  • Geoprocessing Specialist
  • Geospatial Analyst
  • Geospatial Analyst, Geospatial Programmer
  • GIS Manager/Analyst/Specialist/Technician
  • Graphic Designer and Marketing
  • Health Services Planner
  • Historic Preservationist
  • Housing Development Specialist
  • Hydrologist
  • Industrial Developer/Planner
  • Industrial Location Specialist
  • International Development Project Officer, Facilitator
  • International Trade Relations
  • Journalist
  • Land Use Analyst
  • Lecturer
  • Librarian
  • Local/Regional/State Government Agencies
  • Management Consultant
  • Map Curator/Editor/Librarian
  • Market Researcher Analyst
  • Meteorologist
  • Mining Corporations
  • National Geospatial Intelligence Agency
  • Natural Resources Manager
  • Operations Manager
  • Outdoor Guide
  • Park Ranger
  • Peace Corps Volunteer
  • Planner
  • Policy Researcher
  • Population Specialist
  • Professor
  • Project Manager (commercial)
  • Project Scientist
  • Public Relations
  • Public Utilities Specialist
  • Real Estate Appraiser/Analyst
  • Real Estate Development Analyst
  • Remote Sensing Analyst
  • Renewable Energy/Energy Storage Development
  • Researcher
  • Resource Planner
  • Social Worker
  • Software Engineer
  • Soil Scientist
  • Spatial Epidemiologist
  • State Geological Surveys
  • Surveying and Mapping Technician
  • Surveyor
  • Systems Analyst
  • Teacher
  • Transportation Planner
  • Transportation Specialist
  • Travel Agent
  • United States Armed Forces
  • United States Census Bureau
  • United States Central Intelligence Agency
  • United States Department of Agriculture
  • United States Department of Defense
  • United States Department of the Interior
  • United States Geological Survey
  • United States Parks Service
  • United States State Department
  • Urban/Regional Planner
  • Water Conservation Districts
  • Water Resource Specialist/Technician
  • Writer