Undergraduate Programs

The Department of Geography and Planning offers two undergraduate degrees; a BS in Urban and Environmental Planning and a BS in Geography. The BS in Geography degree has five areas of specialty (or tracks) that students can follow.

  1. General Geography- for students wanting an overall mix of geography courses.
  2. Environmental Geography- encourages environmental awareness; promotes research and service that fosters regional and global sustainability.
  3. Geographic Information Systems (GIS)- focuses on techniques in spatial analysis, cartography, environmental modeling, geodatabases, and internet-based GIS. Students are able to integrate GIS into their course/degree projects work, and thesis, as well as presentations and research.
  4. Location Analytics
  5. Elective Social Studies - incorporates the courses necessary for certification to teach.

We also offer four minors:

  1. Geography and Planning
  2. Business GIS
  3. Applied Community & Environmental Sustainability (ACES)
  4. Geographic Information Systems

Contact Information

For more information on programs in Geography and Planning, contact:

Dr. Gary Coutu, Chair
West Chester University
Department of Geography and Planning
West Chester, PA 19383
610-436-2343 or 610-738-0522
GCoutu@wcupa.edu

Minor in Geography and Planning

Geo Minor

This six-course minor appeals to students of many majors. Selection of courses under this minor is flexible so that, for example, the Business student can build a sequence of courses that include Business Geographics, Economic Geography, and perhaps some international courses. As another example, the Biology or Geology major can build a sequence of courses that are in the environmental realm (e.g., conservation of natural resources, environmental planning) and also select some of the techniques and tools courses, such as Geographic Information Systems. Elementary education majors would choose still a different array of courses.

Advising Sheets

Advising sheets are available online . Paper copies can be found on the 5th floor of the College of Business and Public Management Building outside of room 505. Advising sheets are subject to change; majors should check with their advisor before registering for classes.

Required Course: (1 course, 3 credit hours)

  • GEO 101 World Geography OR GEO 103 Human Geography

Elective courses: (5 courses, 15 credit hours) Selected in consultation with Minor Advisor.

Minor in Business Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

This six course minor program in Business Geographic Information Systems (GIS) builds a sequence of statistical and computer courses, and provides students with the spatial analysis skills applied to business-oriented data and questions. It is designed for students in business programs (management, marketing, economics, and accounting) but may be taken by others. Course work focuses on developing expertise with GIS.

Advising Sheets

Advising sheets are available online . Paper copies can be found on the 5th floor of the College of Business and Public Management Building outside of room 505. Advising sheets are subject to change; majors should check with their advisor before registering for classes.

Required Courses: (3 courses, 9 credit hours)

  1. GEO 325 Business GIS
  2. GEO 425 GIS: Business Applications
  3. ECO 251 Quantitative Business Analysis I or GEO 326 Geographical Analysis or MAT 121 Statistics I

Elective Courses: (3 courses, 9 credit hours)

Select in consultation with Minor Advisor, usually recommended from the following courses.

  1. GEO 324 Introduction to GIS
  2. GEO 424 GIS Applications
  3. GEO 213 Social Sci GIS
  4. GEO 214 Introduction to Planning
  5. GEO 318 Economic Geography
  6. GEO 328 Computer Graphics
  7. GEO 331 Transportation Planning
  8. GEO 338 Environmental App: GIS
  9. GEO 401 Internet Mapping
  10. GEO 427 Geodatabase Systems
  11. MIS 300 Introduction to MIS
  12. MIS 301 Introduction to Business Software
  13. GEO 415 Internship (GIS related)
  14. MKT 461 Internship (GIS related)
  15. MGT 341 Production Operations
  16. MGT 486 Internship (GIS related)

Minor in Geographic Information Systems

This minor explores the fundamental concepts and skills of geographic information systems (GIS) as a tool for data management, spatial analysis, and geovisualization. Students will explore the foundations of spatial data, database management, modeling, cloud-based applications, and the production of analysis and cartographic outputs for research and community engagement. The application and visualization components of this minor align well with disciplines in the earth, computer, and social sciences.

Advising Sheets

Advising sheets are available online . Paper copies can be found on the 5th floor of the College of Business and Public Management Building outside of room 505. Advising sheets are subject to change; majors should check with their advisor before registering for classes.

Required Courses (3 courses; 9 credits)

1. GEO 324 Introduction to GIS
2. GEO 328 Computer Cartography
3. GEO 427 Geodatabase Systems

Elective Courses (3 courses; 9 credits)

Select from the following approved electives courses (note: one elective course MUST be from Geography and Planning - GEO or PLN prefix): 

1. ANT 213 Archaeological Field Techniques
2. ANT 367 Archaeology and the Environment
3. ANT 368 Archaeological Field School
4. BIO 270 Ecology
5. BIO 310 Biostatistical Applications
6. BIO Epidemiology
7. CRJ 215 GIS for Criminal Justice Careers
8. CRJ 318 Environmental Crime
9. CRJ 323 Opportunities, Situations,and Crime: Environmental Criminology
10. CSC 141 Computer Science I
11. CSC 142 Computer Science II
12. CST 221 Database Systems
13. CSW 131 Introduction to Web Design
14. CSW 315 Introduction to Web Programming
15. ESS 201 Field Geology
16. ESS 323 General Geological Field Studies of SE Pennsylvania
17. ESS 343 Geomorphology
18. ESS 344 Geomorphology II
19. ESS 435 Remote Sensing
20. ESS 394 Geology of Northwestern National Parks
21. ESS 395 Geology of Southwestern National Parks
22. ENV 445 Risk Assessment
23. GEO 213 GIS for the Social Sciences
24. GEO 214 Intro to Planning
25. GEO/PLN 318 Economic Geography
26. GEO 325 Introduction to Business GIS
27. GEO 338 Environmental Applications of GIS
28. GEO 401 Internet Mapping (note: the pre-requisite course GEO 225 is waived for non-Geography/Planning majors
29. GEO 415 Internship (GIS-related)
30. GEO 424 GIS Applications
31. GEO 425 Business GIS Applications 
32. HEA 342 Program Planning and Evaluation
33. HEA 348 Population Health
34. HEA 419 Research Methods in Health

Minor in Applied Community and Environmental Sustainability (ACES)

This minor centers on the application of the sustainability principles of economic vitality, environmental integrity, and social equity to communities and landscapes. The flexible and applied focus of the program combines well with other majors. Students learn practical applications of sustainability principles to local, regional, and global communities and environments.

Advising Sheets

Advising sheets are available online . Paper copies can be found on the 5th floor of the College of Business and Public Management Building outside of room 505. Advising sheets are subject to change; majors should check with their advisor before registering for classes.

Required Courses (2 courses, 6 credit hours)

1. GEO 230 Environmental Conservation & Sustainability OR ESS/SCB/ENV 102 Humans & the Environment
2. GEO 334 Sustainable Living

Elective Courses (4 courses, 12 credit hours)

1. BIO 472 Conservation Biology
2. CRJ 318 Environmental Crime
3. ECO 385 Environmental and Resource Economics
4. ESS 336 Environmental Geology
5. ENV 435 Environmental Health Workshop
6. GEO 101 World Geography
7. GEO 205 Geography of Agriculture, Food & Sustainability
8. GEO 214 Intro to Planning
9. GEO 316 Planning for Resilient Communities & Disasters
10. GEO 331 Transportation Planning
11. GEO 332 Environmental Crises
12. GEO 336 Environmental Planning
13. GEO 341 Landscape Ecology
14. MGT 200 Principles of Management
15. MGT 313 Business and Society
16. PLN 301 Planning History, Theory & Ethics
17. PLN 320 Land Use Planing
18. PSC 354 Environmental Politics and Policy

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