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Geography

Junior Sophister (3rd Year) Modules
Students can get their Module Enrolment form signed by Mark Hennessy, ext 1881, in Room 1.6 in the Museum Building.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GSU11003)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term NA 100% CA 3 hours a week Dr Patrick Bresnihan

Description

damaging activities? Do we all bear equal responsibility? Who is being affected most? Are solutions to be found in technological engineering or do we need more radical social, cultural and political transformations? Why has action on the environment been so ineffective to date, and where can we identify signs of hope for a better future? This module covers these questions and more by engaging ideas and perspectives from the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Understand and explain the scientific and cultural significance of the Anthropocene;
  • Critically engage with key debates over the Anthropocene that span the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities;
  • Identify the major ethical and political questions facing humanity in a time of ecological uncertainty and environmental degradation;
  • Connect the Anthropocene with current events and everyday life,particularly as relates to urban sustainability.

In terms of transferable skills, students will be expected to have:

  • Developed their reading skills and capacity to synthesize and build arguments through involvement in small-class seminars;
  • Developed their writing skills through formal and creative writing assignments.

Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GGU33930)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term NA 100% CA 2 hours a week Dr. Patrick Bresnihan

Description

different places. By understanding how and why particular forms of environmentalism have emerged historically and geographically, students will learn that the environment is not just an external, physical backdrop to be measured, valued or managed. How people come to understand and relate to the environment is fundamental to the kinds of action (or lack of action) they may take to protect it. This has important implications today as the worsening state of our environment and the lack of meaningful action demands new ways of understanding what it means to be environmental.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this module:

  • Students will have developed a critical understanding of how the idea of the “environment” has emerged differently across time and space, particularly since the 1960s;
  • Students will be able to identify many of the key texts, ideas, individuals, technologies, environmental movements and events that have shaped current thinking, values, and perspectives on the environment;
  • environmentalism, what lies behind some of our deep assumptions about the environment, and why this matters for environmental politics;
  • Students will have developed critical analytic skills through the examination of a variety of documentary sources including academic and non-academic texts, documentary films, government reports, and media reports.

Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GGU44926)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term Environmental studies, Geography, Environmental sociolog 100% CA 2 hours a week Dr. Patrick Bresnihan (pbresnih@tcd.ie)

Description

This module combines classical and contemporary perspectives from geography, political ecology, environmental anthropology, and science and technology studies, to better understand the complex drivers and uneven consequences of socio-environmental change. Motivated by a concern to interrupt these dynamics, the module aims to push students to critically assess the limitations of mainstream environmental governance.

This module aims to provide students with the conceptual and methodological tools to carry out critical, independent research on an environment-related topic. The objective of the course is for students to come away with a critical “toolkit” for thinking, writing, and acting on complex social and ecological problems in Ireland and elsewhere. It is also hoped that the research carried out by the students will provide valuable and critical insights for a wider audience interested in environmental issues in Ireland.

The module will consist of weekly interactive lectures/seminars based around set readings. The module is designed at every stage to support the development of independent research projects that each student will undertake over the 12 weeks. The classes will introduce key theoretical, methodological, and research tools from the field of political ecology over this period, as well as providing time for students to discuss their projects in class. While each class will focus on a specific theoretical perspective or methodological challenge, the module is designed so that each class builds on the last. Class attendance is thus essential.

Course Objesctives:
  • To develop a strong understanding of the eclectic field of political ecology, including key thinkers, texts, concepts and perspectives;
  • To develop critical thinking in relation to environmental problems and responses to those problems;
  • To understand the different aspects of engaged research and why it is important;
  • To develop the skills of critical reading, writing, debating and presenting.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GG3033 Geographical Information: Data and Tools)

(5 ECTS credits) Semester 2 NA Course work (100%) Lectures & Practicals = 20hrs) Professor Martin Sokol (sokolm@tcd.ie)

Description

This module explores how to identify, create and use geographic data and tools. The object of the module is to teach students about how data is constructed, used, found, and manipulated by geographic researchers. The module will enable students to: interpret maps; find and evaluate data; organise, manipulate and analyse data in statistical packages and GIS; create projects and maps using GIS; indentify how geographic data construction and analysis differs from typical quantitative approaches.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Explain the concepts and theories that underpin GIS and outline their application to the real world;
  • Demonstrate technical proficiency in the use of an industry standard GIS software package;
  • Apply GIS technologies in problem-solving;
  • Design, implement and present the results from a project that makes use of GIS technologies.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GG3037 Urban Structure and Regeneration)

(5 ECTS credits) Semester 1 NA To be confirmed. NA Professor Cian O'Callaghan

Description

The study of cities is crucial to understanding contemporary society, given that we live now live in a majority urban world. This module introduces to some key themes, concepts, and debates in urban geography. The module first considers the historic development of urbanisation, the transition to urban-based economies, and the development of urban studies. It then focusses specifically on the urban impacts of globalisation, in particular how cities in the developed world have managed the shift from industrialism to post-industrialism.

Learning Outcomes:

This module will:

  • provide students with a thorough understanding of the processes underlying changing urban economic form and the concurrent shift in the cultural life of cities
  • examine the varied character of urban regeneration policies, their function and effectiveness with 'regeneration' as a central theme. Particular attention will be given to the circular nature of processes of urban growth and decline and how regeneration efforts include and exclude particular social groups and identities.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GG3038 Exploring the sustainable city)

(5 ECTS credits) Semester 1 NA 2 hour examination (50%) answer 2Q/6 + coursework (50%). Lectures + seminars 22 hours); Professor Federico Cugurullo

Description

What will the city of the future look like? To what extent are our models of city-making sustainable? Is the road that we are taking leading us towards an environmental utopia in which societies will grow in balance with nature, or are we paving the way for the collapse of our civilization?

These are the key questions that will drive our exploration of the different ways through which, today, sustainable urban development is understood and practiced across the world.

In this highly interdisciplinary module, we are going to use the tools of geography to examine the most critical socio-environmental issues faced by cities (climate change, consumption, happiness, environmental degradation, etc.), and discuss both the theory and practice of urban sustainability.

Using case studies from different continents, we will explore projects for eco-cities and smart cities, and evaluate their sustainability performance. We will also draw upon urban history and political philosophy to learn how the ideal city was imagined in past, and use this knowledge to foresee what urban futures alleged smart-eco cities are shaping.

Each session will be designed to stimulate interaction and will require curiosity and imagination. This module is more than a review of how urban sustainability is understood and practiced, and you will be asked to design, present and discuss practical plans of action to sustain urban living in the 21st century and beyond.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of key debates relating to theories and practices of sustainable urban development
  • Show understanding of the different meanings of urban sustainability across geographical spaces
  • Undertake analysis of complex, incomplete or contradictory areas of knowledge in relation to contemporary urban challenges
  • Critically evaluate urban agendas from a sustainability perspective
  • Design and evaluate strategies for sustainable urban development.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GG3055 Deserts of our Solar System)

(10 ECTS credits) Semester 1 GG2024 Continuous Assessment [100%] Lectures (34 hrs); Professor Mary Bourke (bourkem4@tcd.ie)

Description

Note:

Places on this module are limited to 30. In the case of oversubscription, places will be allocated on the basis of student performance in GG2024

Outline:

Planetary geomorphology is the frontier field ofPhysical Geography. This module explores the desert landforms of our solar system. It focuses on the arid environments of Earth and Mars. Using the latest data from NASA and ESA we will explore how landforms and geomorphic processes vary under different atmospheric, gravity and temperature regimes. You will be introduced to geomorphic features that are not found on Earth. We will investigate how geomorphologists use landforms on Earth to understand those on other solar system bodies.

Learning outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will:

  • Have gained a basic knowledge of the desert geomorphology on Earth and Mars
  • Understand how and why landforms vary across our solar system
  • Know how field and experimental studies are used in Planetary Geomorphology
  • Be competent in analysis of planetary landforms using a GIS platform
  • Be familiar with the latest findings from Lander and Orbiter missions
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GG3056 History & Philosophy of Geography)

(5 ECTS credits) Semester 1 NA 1 1/2 hour examination (50%) Answer 2Q/6; Coursework (50%) Contact Module Co-ordinator. Professor Mark Hennessy (mhnnessy@tcd.ie)

Description

This module, which is restricted to and compulsory for JS Geography students, presents an overview of the development of the discipline of Geography from classical Greece through to contemporary developments. Throughout the focus is on how changes in the practice of geography are related to broader social, cultural and political contexts. A number of key topics are examined in detail.

  • I. The classical world. 1. Hecataeus, Eratosthenes and the early Greek geographers. 2. Ptolemey, Strabo, Pliny the Elder and other geographers from the period of the Roman empire.
  • II. Geography in the age of Victorian exploration. The relationship between empire and geography is a key theme in this section.
  • III. French Geography in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The contrasting ideological context of the Vidalian school and the work of Elisee Recus is considered. The influence of German geographers such as Von Humboldt, Ritter and Ratzel on this tradition is also dealt with.
  • IV. The "Quantitative Revolution". Developments in geography in the late 1950s, '60s and '70s are examined and are contrasted with Hartshorne's earlier outline of the scope and methods of geography.
  • V. Feminism and Geography. The influence of Feminist perspectives on research and writing in geography is traced and set within the wider context of the introduction of radical and anti-systemic ideologies to the practice of geography.
  • VI. Postmodernism and Geography. This section explores how the philosophical, methodological and ideological innovations associated with Postmodernism have influenced the practice of geography.

Teaching on the module is by lectures and class discussions. For some classes students will carry out prescribed preparation that forms the basis of class discussion facilitated by the lecturer.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Have gained a knowledge of how the discipline of Geography has changed from Classical times to the present;
  • Have a critical awareness of how intellectual and disciplinary change is related to broader patterns of historical change in Geography;
  • Know how praxis is related to social, cultural and political contexts.
Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GSU11003 Anthropocene)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term NA 100% CA 3 hours a week Dr Patrick Bresnihan

Description

The “Anthropocene” is a term that has become widely used since Nobel Prize Laureate Paul Crutzen and Eugene Stoermer began popularizing it in 2000. They argued that humans had so dramatically transformed the planet that it was time to pronounce a new geological epoch: the Anthropocene—or, “the human age.”

Whether the Anthropocene is officially accepted as the designation of a new geological epoch or not, the term has sparked debates and discussions across the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities. The interdisciplinary interest in the Anthropocene demonstrates that the term is more than simply a geological or physical phenomenon; it has complex social, cultural, political, and economic dimensions.

From plastic-filled oceans to species extinction, there is little doubt that human activities are making their mark on the planet. The staggering scale and profound consequences of human activities on the environment raise a series of questions we will consider together. What are the underlying drivers of these environmentally damaging activities? Do we all bear equal responsibility? Who is being affected most? Are solutions to be found in technological engineering or do we need more radical social, cultural and political transformations? Why has action on the environment been so ineffective to date, and where can we identify signs of hope for a better future? This module covers these questions and more by engaging ideas and perspectives from the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Understand and explain the scientific and cultural significance of the Anthropocene;
  • Critically engage with key debates over the Anthropocene that span the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities;
  • Identify the major ethical and political questions facing humanity in a time of ecological uncertainty and environmental degradation;
  • Connect the Anthropocene with current events and everyday life,particularly as relates to urban sustainability.

In terms of transferable skills, students will be expected to have:

  • Developed their reading skills and capacity to synthesize and build arguments through involvement in small-class seminars;
  • Developed their writing skills through formal and creative writing assignments.

Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GGU33930 Environmentalism)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term NA 100% CA 2 hours a week Dr. Patrick Bresnihan

Description

Environmentalism is defined as “concern about and action aimed at protecting the environment”. But what environment are we talking about? Whose environment? How do people become concerned about the environment? Who informs people about environmental problems? What kinds of action are taken in the name of protecting the environment? And, perhaps most importantly of all, why does widespread environmental degradation continue despite all the scientific evidence, media coverage, and environmental awareness campaigns?

This module explores these questions by examining how and why different understandings and attitudes to the environment have emerged at different times and in different places. By understanding how and why particular forms of environmentalism have emerged historically and geographically, students will learn that the environment is not just an external, physical backdrop to be measured, valued or managed. How people come to understand and relate to the environment is fundamental to the kinds of action (or lack of action) they may take to protect it. This has important implications today as the worsening state of our environment and the lack of meaningful action demands new ways of understanding what it means to be environmental.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this module:

  • Students will have developed a critical understanding of how the idea of the “environment” has emerged differently across time and space, particularly since the 1960s;
  • Students will be able to identify many of the key texts, ideas, individuals, technologies, environmental movements and events that have shaped current thinking, values, and perspectives on the environment;
  • environmentalism, what lies behind some of our deep assumptions about the environment, and why this matters for environmental politics;
  • Students will have developed critical analytic skills through the examination of a variety of documentary sources including academic and non-academic texts, documentary films, government reports, and media reports.

Module Code & Name ECTs credits Duration and semester Prerequisite Subjects Assessment Contact Hours Contact Details

(GGU44926)

(10 ECTS credits) 12 weeks, Hilary term Environmental studies, Geography, Environmental sociolog 100% CA 2 hours a week Dr. Patrick Bresnihan (pbresnih@tcd.ie)

Description

This module combines classical and contemporary perspectives from geography, political ecology, environmental anthropology, and science and technology studies, to better understand the complex drivers and uneven consequences of socio-environmental change. Motivated by a concern to interrupt these dynamics, the module aims to push students to critically assess the limitations of mainstream environmental governance.

This module aims to provide students with the conceptual and methodological tools to carry out critical, independent research on an environment-related topic. The objective of the course is for students to come away with a critical “toolkit” for thinking, writing, and acting on complex social and ecological problems in Ireland and elsewhere. It is also hoped that the research carried out by the students will provide valuable and critical insights for a wider audience interested in environmental issues in Ireland.

The module will consist of weekly interactive lectures/seminars based around set readings. The module is designed at every stage to support the development of independent research projects that each student will undertake over the 12 weeks. The classes will introduce key theoretical, methodological, and research tools from the field of political ecology over this period, as well as providing time for students to discuss their projects in class. While each class will focus on a specific theoretical perspective or methodological challenge, the module is designed so that each class builds on the last. Class attendance is thus essential.

Course Objesctives:
  • To develop a strong understanding of the eclectic field of political ecology, including key thinkers, texts, concepts and perspectives;
  • To develop critical thinking in relation to environmental problems and responses to those problems;
  • To understand the different aspects of engaged research and why it is important;
  • To develop the skills of critical reading, writing, debating and presenting.