Teaching and assessment

Lectures and tutorials

Lectures and practicals

The building blocks of your study are lectures and associated practicals where you will develop the essential knowledge required for further independent research and greater in-depth exploration of the themes within your chosen unit.


Year 1 students are allocated a pastoral tutor who remains the key contact for any personal/academic needs throughout their time with us. Pastoral tutors are supported by Postgraduate Teaching Assistants who deliver tutorials focusing on key study skills, supporting and complementing the taught courses.

Year 2 students attend specialist tutorials which are designed to complement teaching and allow students to gain a first-hand appreciation of the cutting edge research undertaken across the school by our academics.

Year 3 students also have the benefit of specific dissertation tutors who provide support for final year research projects.


Across the BSc and MSci teaching programmes, assessment methods include conventional written examinations, ‘take-home’ papers, continuous assessment of practical assignments, field work reports, presentations and examination by the submission of a written dissertation, project or extended essay.

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Practical work and projects

Practical work

The knowledge you develop in the lecture theatre will be reinforced by practical experience either in the lab, the field or through computer-based study, which is included in several units, as we are keen for students to develop their own research skills and expertise.


All students undertake a dissertation project in year 3 of their degree. This is an original piece of research in which a student has to initiate and complete a personal research exercise.

This will deepen your knowledge and encourage you to develop and refine the research skills you will have learnt in year 2. Students registered to the year 4 MSci programme are required to submit a further Extended Research Project - many of these are of publishable standard.

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Field courses and expeditions

From the wildlife-dense terrain of the Avon Gorge to the vibrant cityscape of Barcelona, we pride ourselves on being able to offer students the vital opportunity to undertake a programme of field work that will embed the skills gained in the lab and the lecture theatre, as well as provide a memorable university experience.

Year 1 students take a compulsory UK-based field course which introduces the main field techniques employed by both physical and human geography researchers.

In year 2, students take a European-based field class depending on which units they have opted to study. These trips enhance the learning undertaken in year 2 and provide essential skills needed to undertake dissertation research.

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The lecturers are great – very helpful, friendly and enthusiastic. The content is also at the cutting edge of current geography, such as Glacial Microbiology and Ecohydrology.

Bethany, Geography undergraduate
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