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Future Geographies. Michael Bradford University of Manchester. Outline. HE Geography Why? How? What? Geographies at other levels Two questions. HE Geography: Why?.

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Future geographies

Future Geographies

Michael Bradford

University of Manchester


HE Geography




Geographies at other levels

Two questions

He geography why
HE Geography: Why?

Critical, analytical, creative thinkers and citizens: who can make a difference to future geographies;

who can understand and lead change;

who can apply their geographical thinking across the social and natural sciences to yield new understandings of the contemporary world;

The why
The Why

and who can challenge the taken-for-granted assumptions of everyday life,

contribute to major societal and environmental issues and

make the two-way links between everyday life and these major issues.

He geography the how
HE Geography: the How?

  • Students as partners in learning –

    co-creating the curriculum

  • A variety of learning experiences which employ active and enquiry-based learning

  • Where the assessment tasks are part of those learning experiences:

    e.g. reflective pieces; teamwork

  • Developing abilities and skills through the assessments

He geography the what
HE Geography: the What?

  • Curricula developed from the viewpoint of the learning of students (from a variety of backgrounds)

  • Towards some of the specialist research areas of the department, appropriate for third year learning

  • Integrating a full range of skills that show progression through the three years

The what
The what?

So no national curriculum:

permit the dynamism of the discipline to reflect both the changing world and changing understandings from wider literature

Even in year 1

The why the how the what
The Why The How The What?

Offer our students opportunities to develop their leadership abilities and skills so that they can take a leading part,

developing international and national agendas in private and public organisations,

to tackle major societal and environmental issues.

Bridging social and natural sciences
Bridging social and natural sciences

  • There is more research being done now on the intersections of society and nature

  • Not just using common approaches as in the days of Chorley and Haggett

  • More joint Research Council research

  • And yet there is still many who retain two strands, human and physical, in their curricula

Geographies at other levels
Geographies at other levels

  • More creativity, not just analytical thinking

  • Can be entrepreneurial – private and public sphere – ethically and ecologically sound

  • More leadership – our discipline attracts students with leadership abilities – foster it – articulate it

A creative question
A creative question

Use analogies and metaphors

Which animalis Geography most like?

Draw it and annotate its characteristics

My question
My question

How do we make two way links between the geographies of everyday life and major societal and environmental issues in a progression from primary to HE?

(Not the same as going from local to global)

Challenge taken-for-granted assumptions

Future geographies

Geographies of

Everyday life

Major Societal and

Environmental Issues