​​​​​​​​​​​​Program Description

Through CMU’s geography program, you’ll explore the relationship and interactions between humans and their environment. A degree in geography will prepare you for a career making decisions about urban and regional planning, resource utilization and preservation, mitigation of natural hazards, and homeland security. You’ll also be prepared to pursue graduate studies, including CMU's master’s degree in Geographic Information Science.

Points of Pride

  • With a 6-foot-long helicopter equipped with a high-resolution digital camera, CMU geography experts are leading the way in advancing research imaging of Great Lakes coastal wetlands.
  • You can gain hands-on experience at CMU’s Center for Geographic Information Science on campus.
  • CMU students benefit from small classes, field trips and opportunities to do research with faculty.
  • You’ll gain professional development and contacts through student organizations such as the Geography Club.

Put Your Degree to Work

The federal government employs about half of all geographers. Many do fieldwork, which may include travel to foreign countries or remote locations. Increasing use of geographic technologies and data will drive employment growth.

​U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics sample data

JobMedian PayJob Growth through ​2022​
Geographer$74,760 per year29% (500 more jobs)
Mapping technician$39,670 per year14% (7,300 more jobs)
Geological engineer$84,320 per year12% (1,000 more jobs)

For More Information

Visit the Department of Geography website or contact:

Department of Geography
Central Michigan University
Dow Science Complex 279
Mount Pleasant, MI 48859
Phone: (989) 774-3323

Program Overview

The course listings below are a representation of what this academic program requires. For a full review of this program in detail please see our official online academic bulletin AND consult with an academic advisor. This listing does not include the General Education courses required for all majors and may not include some program specific information, such as admissions, retention, and termination standards.

(Click on the course name or number for a complete course description.)

Geography Major

Total: 30 semester hours
Required Courses I
(12 hours)
Core Courses
GEO 105
Physical Geography
Environmental Geography
GEO 121
Cultures of the World
Introduction to Geographic Information Science
Required Courses
(9 hours)
9 hours of 300-level, including one regional course
(9 hours)
9 hours selected with permission of instructor

 Grads on Fire

Justin Hajduk, ’08, is an environmental coordinator for Applied Environmental.

Sarah Niemczura, ’08, is a support scientist at NASA/Sigma Space.

Rocky Wager, ’03, is a geographer for the U.S. Geological Survey.

Doug Wright, ’00, is a conservation stewardship director at the Outdoor Discovery Center Macatawa Greenway in Holland, Michigan.

Jonathan Wessell, ’92, is an adjunct geography faculty member at Ferris State University.

Timothy Dolehanty, ’84, is a controller/administrator in Ingham County, Michigan.

Dorothy Hall, ’74, is a senior scientist in the Cryospheric Sciences Laboratory at the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center.

Central Michigan University • 1200 S. Franklin St. • Mount Pleasant, Mich. 48859 • 989-774-4000