Geography describes and explains the locations, distributions, and interrelationships of all surface features, both physical and human/cultural. The purpose of the degree is to develop geographic literacy—a critical understanding of the planet. Defined as a spatial science, geography is the study of places, where those places are in relation to other places and features on earth, and the relationships between people and their environments. An understanding of geography is crucial to long term progress and sustainability, especially in our increasingly interconnected world.
The Associate in Arts in Geography for transfer degree focuses broadly on Earth’s physical and human/cultural landscapes. Geography describes and explains the locations, distributions, and interrelationships of all surface features, both physical and human/cultural. The purpose of the degree is to develop geographic literacy—a critical understanding of the planet. Defined as a spatial science, geography is the study of places, where those places are in relation to other places and features on earth, and the relationships between people and their environments. An understanding of geography is crucial to long term progress and sustainability, especially in our increasingly interconnected world. Students in the Geography Transfer program will investigate a broad range of geographical topics in both the social science and physical science subdivisions of geography. Students will be prepared to complete a baccalaureate degree in geography and pursue careers in education, research, planning, environmental consulting, GIS, international business, and government.
Program Level Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this program, students will be able to:
1. Describe the locations and distributions of major surface features, both human and natural/physical.
2. Discover and explain the spatial and causal relationships among human and natural phenomena.
3. Apply the tools and techniques of geography to develop understanding and appreciation of the planet.
This is the major pattern for students planning to transfer to a CSU. It is strongly recommended that students contact a GWC counselor to develop an official Student Educational Plan to discuss non-CSU universities, or if they have questions about the CSU AA in Geography for CSU Transfer
Core: 6 units
GEOG G180– Introduction to Geography: Physical Geography – 3 units
GEOG G185– Human Geography – 3 units
List A: 6 units
GEOG G180L – Physical Geography Laboratory – 1 unit
GEOG G100 – World Regional Geography – 3 units
GEOG G190 – Introduction to Geographic Information Systems – 2 units
List B: Select two courses
Any course from List A not already used.
MATH G160 – Introduction To Statistics – 4 units
CS G153 – Java Programming, Introduction – 4 units
PHYS G120 – Algebra Based Physics: Mechanics – 4 units
ECON G170 – Principles of Micro Economics – 3 units
BIOL G100 – Introduction to Biology – 4 units
CHEM G180 – General Chemistry A – 5 units
PSCI G180 – American Government – 3 units
ANTH G100 – Introduction to Cultural Anthropology – 3 units
GEOL G110 – Physical Geology – 4 units
Major total: 18-21
CSU General Education Breadth or IGETC Pattern: 37-39 units
Total units that may be double-counted: 10-16 units
Transferable Electives (as needed to reach 60 units): 10-28
DEGREE TOTAL UNITS (maximum): 60 units
( ) Description in parentheses indicates credit earned in AAT
GEOGRAPHY G100 – 3 Units
World Regional Geography
Advisories: English G100
World Regional Geography is an introductory course to geography. It provides an overview of the world using geographic concepts to identify the diversity and similarity of physical and human landscapes in a variety of world regions. Through a spatial approach, World Regional Geography introduces world geographic realms, explores the inter-relationships between human societies and natural environments and provides students with unique perspectives on our changing world. Through the study of physical characteristics, as well as the historic and contemporary (social, economic and political) dynamics of places, students will gain the knowledge to better understand and critically evaluate current cultural and environmental world conditions. This course will increase student’s global awareness to become more informed world citizens and consumers. Regional elements covered include major characteristics, population trends, physical geography, cultural geography and how these elements relate to current global issues. C-ID: GEOG 125 Lecture. Optional pass/no pass grade. Transferable to CSU; UC.
GEOGRAPHY G180 – 3 Units
Introduction to Geography: Physical Geography
Advisories: Math G010
Recommended for transfer students majoring in anthropology, economics, geography, history, sociology and the natural sciences. A study of the basic physical elements of the geographical environment, with particular attention to the earth as a planet, its structural features, landforms, meteorological and climatological phenomena, vegetation, soils and environmental regions. C-ID GEOG 110. Lecture. Optional pass/no pass grade. Transferable to CSU; UC.
GEOGRAPHY G180L – 1 Unit
Physical Geography Laboratory
(Formerly known as: GEOG G181)
Prerequisites: Enrollment in or completion of GEOG G180
Corequisites: Enrollment in or completion of GEOG G180
This course is designed to provide supplemental, practical laboratory exercises that correlate to topics covered in Physical Geography G180. Lab experience will include map analysis and interpretation, weather prognostication, landform processes and evolution, tectonics, biogeography, and habitat analysis. C-ID: GEOG 111. Lab. Letter grade only. Transferable to CSU; UC.
GEOGRAPHY G185 – 3 Units
(Formerly known as: Geography G104, Intro to Geography: Cultural Geography)
Advisories: Previous completion or concurrent enrollment in English G100
An introduction to geography through a topical study of the patterns of human occupation and land use over the earth’s surface and the correlation with the natural environment. Particular emphasis will be given to population, agriculture and landscape, political-economic systems, religion and language, social structures, urbanization, and the environment. Recommended for transfer students majoring in the social sciences, humanities and liberal arts. C-ID: GEOG 120. Lecture. Optional pass/no pass grade. Transferable to CSU; UC.
GEOGRAPHY G190 – 2 Units
Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
Advisories: Completion of or concurrently enrolled in English G098 and Math G010
This is an introductory course designed to familiarize students with the technology, capabilities, and functionality of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and geospatial inquiry. Visualization and analysis of distributions and relationships of physical, social, cultural, and economic features to support decision-making is emphasized. Spatial analysis methods are presented and interactively practiced by students to examine and solve social and scientific problems. Students learn proper techniques for sourcing, manipulating, and managing social and scientific data, making logical queries of that data, measuring and validating results, and then presenting their findings in a professional, constructive manner. C-ID: GEOG 155. Lecture & lab. Letter grade only. Transferable to CSU; UC.
The Associate in Arts Degree for Transfer (AA-T) in Geography will transfer to the following California State Universities:
CSU Dominguez Hills
CSU East Bay
CSU Long Beach
CSU Los Angeles
CSU Monterey Bay
CSU San Bernadino
CSU San Diego
CSU San Francisco
CSU San Jose
CSU San Luis Obispo
CSU San Marcos
The list of CSU campuses for this major was provided by the California State University’s A Degree with a Guarantee website: http://adegreewithaguarantee.com/
Most of the courses in this program also transfer to the University of California (UC) System and Private Universities. Please see your GWC Counselor early in your studies to choose the transfer option that is right for you.
- Commercial/residential surveyor.
- Environmental consultant.
- Geographical information systems officer.
- Planning and development surveyor.
- Secondary school teacher.
- Town planner.
Michelle Palma, Ph.D.
B.A. in Geography/Environmental Studies from UCLA; M.A. in Geography from University of Georgia; Ph.D. in Geography from University of Georgia
(714) 892-7711 ext. 51056
Office: ADMIN 216
Department Co-Chair: Sunshine McClain
Associate Professor, History
A.A. in Social Studies at Golden West College; B.A. in History at California State University, Fullerton; M.A. in History at University of California, Irvine
(714) 892-7711 x51048
Office: ADMIN 228
Department Co-Chair: Noah Levin, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Philosophy
B.S., Harvey Mudd College; M.A., Ph.D., Bowling Green State University
(714) 892-7711 x51062
Office: ADMIN 213
• Michelle Haley
• Laszlo Mariahazy
• Kathleen Moriarty