Undergraduate Degrees

Oferta 2016/2017

  • Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning

    General Information


    The duration of the Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning is of 4 years. The minimum number of credits needed to obtain the degree is 240 ECTS credits.

    Responsible Center:

    Modality: Attendance required

    Teaching Languages: Spanish

    Distribution and Credits:

    • Basic Formation: 60
    • Compulsory Subjects: 138
    • Elective Subjects: 36
    • Undergraduate Thesis: 6

    Registration fees for first-time enrollment in a full course:  759,54 €

    Access and Career Opportunities

    Profile of the New Student
    • Recommended High School modalities with the PAU examination passed: Humanities and Social Sciences.
    • Higher Grade formative cycle: Administration and Management; Graphical Arts; Commerce and Marketing; Hostelry and Tourism; Image and Sound; Communication and Socio-Cultural and Community Services.
    • Access examination for people Older than 25, 40 or 45.
    • University degree.

    Attentive, analytical and critical attitude. Interest in developing and transmitting knowledge that is useful for society. Humanistic and naturalistic culture, interest for knowledge of the environment, traveling and field trips, synthetic capacity and a like for graphical and cartographical skills. Disposition towards working and studying.

    Professional Opportunities

    Professional profiles:

    • Research and/or teaching
    • Dissemination in the media, publishing houses and enterprises of tourism.
    • Work activities according to specific competences (adaptability, flexibility).
    • Creation and interpretation of cartography and geographical information systems.
    • Gestión medioambiental, espacios y recursos naturales y su ordenación, paisaje.
    • Analysis, planning and management of the territory, the city and mobility.
    • Studies and proposals of demography and territorial analysis of the population and the social and economic processes.
    • Self-employment.

    Characteristics of the Center

    Premises and services

    All the classrooms and seminars are equipped with new technologies (PC, project, Internet access, etc.). The Faculty has meeting rooms, social spaces, IT classrooms, lunchroom for the students, etc.

    Mobility and international relations

    ERASMUS mobility agreements: Treveris (Germany), Bourdeaux, Lille, Limoges and Poitiers (France), Athens (Greece), Coimbra (Portugal).

    SICUE mobility agreements: Barcelona, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Balearic Isles, Autonomous University of Madrid, Complutense University of Madrid, Malaga, Santiago de Compostela, Valladolid.

    Internships, employment and tutorial action plan

    External internships in town councils, autonomous institutions, enterprises of the field, etc. Tutorial action plan for new students.

    Further information

    Justification of the Degree

    A) The new Undergraduate Degree as a continuation of the Bachelor's Degree in Geography

    The Undergraduate Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning is meant to be taken as a continuation and adaptation of the current Bachelor's Degree in Geography, as it is also proposed by the rest of the Spanish universities and as estipulated in the White Book of the Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning, which has the corresponding evaluation by the National Agency for the Evaluation of Quality and Certification (ANECA).

    In fact, the current Bachelor's Degree already shows an unquestionable direction to the application of the geographical knowledge and techniques to Territorial Planning, which translates to a presence of a visible number of compulsory and optative subjects with this profile: Territorial Planning I and II; Introduction to Regional Planning; Planning and rural politics in Spain; Urban planning; Planning of natural resources; Rural planning and local development; Integrated projects of territorial action; Management of pogramas of territorial action. In the same way, as it is described in the Teaching Guide of the Faculty of Geography and History, one of the three itineraries of the Study Plan is directed specifically to "Territorial Planning (Planning of natural, rural and urban resources)".

    In this sense, making explicit this orientation in the new Degree is no more than formalizing an already-existing reality, rooted and widely recognized in the university, institutional and social contexts, but which also requires a formal organization and a proper public dissemination.

    B) General definition

    The White Book defines Geography as "a science of the territory, a naturalist and environmental discipline, at the same time that it is primarily social, with a theoretical aspect and another one directed at the practice or application. Geography offers the cultural elements that are vital to obtain a wide view of the Earth, of its realities, of its issues and of the dangers that affect those who inhabit it. But, apart from this wide general view, it offers an ample theoretical and methodological basis, as well as a series of techniques and instruments to analyze and recommend solutions that help lessening or solving different problems of a territorial nature.

    C) Importance of the geographical knowledge in contemporary society

    The essential character of Geography as a knowledge interested by the link between society and nature and also situated, thus, in a field of contact between the natural and social sciences, has bee the cause, in the past, of certain difficulties in its scientific, academic, social and institutional projections, every time that the marked tendency towards specialization in contemporary society has favored the disciplines focused on the knowledge of particual scientific objects, in contrast to those that, like Geography, have maintained their traditional complex object (the territory) and their transversal methodological vocation. Thus, university Geography played an important role in the research on natural, human and regional themes, and in the formation of teachers directed at secondary education, while its applied orientation was relatively limited.

    This situation, nevertheless, has been visibly changed in the past few decades, which brought to the forefront phenomena and problems of a global natures related to the sustainability of natural and cultural resources, the importance of natural and cultural diversity and climate change, whose causes and effects are also undeniably socio-cultural.

    Also in the regional scheme, some of the main current concerns have a clear socio-cultural and territorial nature: urban expansion on the rural and natural domains; the decentralization of functions and activities; the increse of mobility and its consequences; the concurrence of expectative and diverse uses of resources and spaces that are constantly becoming more scarce and sensible; the search of compatibilities and synergies between the conservation of heritage and the strategies of development, etc.

    All these phenomena and other similar ones, global, regional and local, that have an undeniable current and future relevance, require as a common denominator an approach, explanation and treatment which, apart from the thematica, specialized or multidisciplinary thematic, are more needed than ever in the synthetic and transversal contest of the geographical perspective, as well as a greater importance of its applied facet that, through planning, contributes to mitigate the environmental and social problems derived from the complex territorial dynamics and to harmonize the objectives of conservation and development.

    Geography has been developing in this framework during the past few years, paying attention to the deep territorial dynamics from the updating of its traditional basic knowledge, the innovation in its methods and techniques (especially for the development of Geographical Information Systems - GIS), and the stress put in territorial planning.

    D) Academic establishment in the European, national and regional levels

    University teaching of Geography is present in all the European countries and enjoys a solid reputation and a valuable social appreciation by the professionals it educates, which is translated into a high demand. Thus, the Degree in Geography has been kept as a specific offer in the countries that have reformed their university system and the catalog of Degrees. Moreover, in some countries like Great Britain, Holland, France or Portugal, such is its importance and participation in the job market that there are itineraries of specialization already present in the first cycle and a wide range of Master's Degrees that complete the formation of the students (the White Book of the Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning provide more information on this matter).

    The Bachelor's Degree in Geography is also present in all the Autonomous Communities and in a total of 26 university, what must be seen as the potentiality of the new Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning due to the two fundamental orientations of geographical formation, secondary education teaching and the capacity to face territorial matters, need of a presence that extends itself through the territory since they are demands strongly regionalized, as they are both autonomical competences and, as it has been established, territorial problems are being posed and resolved in a local and regional scale. This wide territorial university presence of Geography has also been seen in European countries such as France, the United Kingdom and Holland.

    At the University of Oviedo, the Bachelor's Degree in Geography, from which the new Undergraduate Degree was born, has always been linked to the Department of Geography that, intially part of the Section of History of the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters, gained a greater relevance and autonomy in 1976, when a specific Section of Geography was established, which, in the framework of the new Bachelor's Degree in Geography and History, was emplaced at the Campus of El Milán in 1991.

    It is precisely at the Campus of El Milán where the Department has reached its greatest relevance, with a faculty of 19 teachers, 2 draftsmen and one administrative, starting to offer during the 1995-1996 academic year its own Bachelor's Degree in Geography, apart from carrying out a considerable teaching activity in other Degrees (Teaching Education, History, Art History, Tourism, Topography, with a total of 12) and offering sucessive programs of Third Cycle, especially those related to "analysis, representation and planning of the territory", which is precisely the name of the PhD Program currently on offer.

    E) Relation to the characteristics and demands of Asturias

    The relation of the Degree in Geography with the region in which it is found is derived from its unambiguous regional and territorial vocation and the commitment of the Department as an institution and each of its members, as intellectuals interested in the issues and needs of their environment.

    The Autonomous Community has a wide and valuable heritage of knowledge on the natural, rural, mining-industrial and urban environment of Asturias that would not exist, for the most part, without the help of university Geography and whose generative interruption would have very negative consequences in the future, since, while other scientific fields pay more attention to general research or the delocalized practical application, geographers (like historians or art historians, among others) use their immediate environment as the preferred field to nurture their general thirst for basic knowledge and to apply said need.

    As it is the most immediate environment, Asturias has been the favorite laboratory for the research conducted from the Department of Geography (from which the best example of the Revista Ería journal, http://dialnet.unirioja.es/servlet/revista?tipo_busqueda=CODIGO&clave_revista=509) and for the field practices related to university teaching and which, with the support of the teachers of the Department, are conducted by taking students to different secondary education centers of the region or to teachers of secondary education through the Centers of Teachers and Resources (CPR).

    But also, in an exponentially growing fashion, applied geographical knowledge has been offered to the regional demand of urbanism, territorial planning, planning of natural resources, sectorial planning or rural development; both in a direct way, via research projects or agreements with public and private enterprises, and indirectly, via private enterprises or entities such as the Center for Territorial Cooperation and Development (CECODET) or the Institute of Natural Resources and Territorial Planning (INDUROT), where many of the people who completed the current and previous Degrees are now working.

    The Autonomous Community of the Principality of Asturias faces a future in which trascendental problems (and opportunities) of a clear territorial nature will have to be continuously analyzed and approached, both from a soci-political and institutional point of view and from the university. The configuration of the central metropolitan area, keeping the complementarity and balance between its nucleus, the compatibility of the conservation and the revaluing of the natural and cultural heritage and of the new leisure and tourist activities and used in the coastal area, are some of these aspects, to which, without any claims of exclusivity, the new Undergraduate Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning may offer an invaluable amount of scientific, technical and human resources generated in the same territory in which those problems and opportunities are created.

    F) Social demand and posibilities of access to a diversified and flexible labor market

    In developing so thoroughly the Degree, both in the Fundamental Module and, especially, in the Modules of Intensification, the subjects on analysis, representation and planning of the territory, emphasis is made precisely on those fields of advanced formation for a qualification that neither the Degree itself, nor others of the University of Oviedo, have so far covered satisfactorily and whose demand is constantly being increased. Thus, it is also possible to cover a field of formative interest more expansive (for example, in Geographical Information Systems) than the one traditionally related to Geography.

    In agreement to what has been previously mentioned, the new Undergraduate Degree offers, at the same time, a general geographical formation that answers to the increasing demads of the labor market focused on territorial planning, the evaluation of the physical medium, the environment and the management of protected natural spaces, geographical information techniques, and urbanism and local development, among other subjects, without undermining a basic university formation.

    This will make of the geographer, as it has been already happening, a professional capable of conducting their job in a wide range of matters, characterized by a formation that is rigorous, but also flexible and adaptative to the different territorial matters demanded by the labor market.

    In this respect, the professionals and graduates of Geography are not in danger of having a limited professional outcome, since they are perfectly adapted to a context that is every day more dynamic, changing and globalized.

    Moreover, the diversity and polivalence of the geographer should not and must be not identified with a blurring of the foundations or professional areas of their capacities and knowledge. On the contrary, the new geographer is a professional specialized in general matters or fields of work of a current and progessively greater qualitative and quantitative value in developed societies.

    This versatility in the professional fields of Geography can already be linked to the high percentage of graduates who have accessed the labor market, as shown by the surveys conducted both at a national and at a regional level. The national information is provided by the aforementioned White Book, while that of Asturias is found at the recent "Study on the labor penetration of the graduates in Geography and their formative needs (June-July 2006)", a study framed in the Call for Grants to the "Development of actions of improvement of the unites evaluated in the different plans of quality of the universities" called for by the Office of the Vice-Rector for Quality, Planning and Innovation of the University of Oviedo for the Department of Geography (Area of improvement nº 4, actions for improvement 4.2 and 4.3), following the guidelines of the Charter of Bologna of 1999, according to which the member states of the European Union commit themselves to establishing a common European Higher Education Area in which the Degrees are a reflection of the social needs and demands, primarily from a work-related perspective.

    Said study shows that 56.7% of the surveyed who are working or have worked in a field related to Geography only took, after completing the Degree, six months in finding their first job as a geographer, 27% between six months and a year and 16.2% did not find their first job in the field until after a year.

    In terms of the activities carried out, 32.6% are related to the treatment and analysis of territorial information via the use of technologies of geographical information; 25.6% are in charge of contents of regional, territorial and local development, while 16.8% works in aspects such as territorial planning and urban management. 11.5% conducts activities related to teaching; 9.4% in the field of the environment and managemente of natural resources, and 4.2% conducts social and demographic studies.

    G) Experience and quality

    As it has been previously indicated, the Undergraduate Degree is nothing more than the update of the current one, based on whose experience the new proposal is articulated and adapted. In terms of support elements relevant to the success of the new Degree, it is worth mentioning the experience given during the past few years by the Plan of Improvement of the Bachelor's Degree in Geography of the University of Oviedo (2004-2007) and the successive Projects of Teaching Innovation during the 2006-2007, 2007-2007 and 2008-2009 academic years, as well as other formative activities aimed at improving the quality of teaching of the teachers of the Department and the dexterity needed to face the establishment of the new system of the EHEA.

    With this starting position and with the contrasted expansion of the demand of geographers formed in the few past years, it is also possible to visibly increase the current demand for studies of Geography if the formative and professional possibilities of the Undergraduate Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning are shown clearly, taking precisely advantage of the process of reformation. In this sense, the new Degree is offered with an alluring professional profile, not only directed to teaching and research but also to professional orientations capable of answering the important territorial problems of modern society.

    Apart from the aforementioned ones, other important merits are derived from the contrasted teaching quality and performance reached in the Bachelor's Degree in Geography. Thus, in the General Survey of Education, the Department of Geography is, year after year, situated at the highests positions in the University of Oviedo, with resultsmuch higher than the average. Also in the latest Study of Academic Performance of the Departments (2006-2007), the Department of Geography shows rates of expectation, success, efficiency and graduation without delay very satisfactory in comparison to the average of the University.


    Termination of the Curriculum

    Adaptation to the Undergraduate Degree

    During the time when the characteristics of the regulations that, in general terms, will be created by the University of Oviedo are not yet know, and always seeking to avoid that the students may be negatively affected by this process, a procedure for the adaptation to the Degree has been designed, as detailed in the following table:

    Bachelor's Degrees that are finished by the establishment of the proposed Undegraduate Degree

    The establishment of the Undergraduate Degree in Geography and Territorial Planning of the University of Oviedo means the conclusion of the current studies of the Bachelor's Degree in Philosophy (Resolution of October 28, 1997, BOE 14/11/1997).