Special Topics in Geography

Postgraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

This course aims to give the student a state-of-the art knowledge into actual research topics with relevance for planned and ongoing master projects in geography. The objective of the course is to impart an understanding of current research topics in geography. This is an optional course in the curriculum in the Master`s programs in geography where the student may specialise on a closely defined topic, either of theoretical and/or methodological character. In agreement with the supervisor, the student will define the actual topic of interest and reading list.

Learning Outcomes

A student who has completed the course should have the following learning outcomes: 


The student

  • has state-of-the art knowledge about the actual research topic in geography.
  • has in-depth knowledge about the theoretical and methodological approaches related to the actual research topic.
  • knows about new research in the special field.


The student

  • can present a written report on the chosen research topic based on relevant reading list.
  • can present orally for an audience a chosen research topic based on relevant reading list.
  • can analyze and think critical to various sources of information regarding the chosen special topic and use this to structure and formulate disciplinary reasoning.
  • can structure, prepare and present a chosen research topic at an academic level that fellow students can follow.

General competence

The student

  • can analyze relevant geographical problems at hand.
  • can apply knowledge and skills on new topics and masters the geographical expressions.
  • can communicate orally and write an academic text on current issues in geographical research regarding the scientific problems, analyses and conclusions.
  • can provide constructive written and oral feedback on scientific content and presentation skills.
  • can independently continue with enhancement of competence and specializing.

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction

Spring. Autumn irregular.
Required Previous Knowledge
Bachelor's degree in geography.
Recommended Previous Knowledge
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
The course is open for geography students accepted for the Master's Programme in Geography (MASV-GEOG), Master's Programme in Geographies of Sustainable Development (MASV-MEHA) and the Master's Programme in Physical Geography (MASV-PHYG).
Teaching and learning methods
Individual studies, supervision and seminars.
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
  • Approved individual curriculum (500-700 pages)
  • Active participation in seminars
  • Feedback to a fellow student, both oral and written
  • Oral presentation (30 minutes including 5-10 minutes for questions)
  • Forms of Assessment

    Paper/essay (5000-7000 words excluding reference list).

    The exam will be given in the language in which the course is taught.

    The exam can be submitted in English, Norwegian, Swedish or Danish

    Grading Scale
    Grading A-F
    Assessment Semester

    Assessment in teaching semester.

    Students with valid absence as defined in the UiB regulations § 5-5 can apply for an extended submission deadline to studieveileder.geog@uib.no. The application must be submitted before the deadline for submission has expired.

    Reading List
    The reading list will be ready before 1 July for the autumn semester and 1 Decemeber for the spring semester.
    Course Evaluation
    All courses are evaluated according to UiB's system for quality assurance of education.
    Programme Committee
    The Programme Committee is responsible for the content, structure and quality of the study programme and courses. 
    Course Administrator
    The Department of Geography at the Faculty of Social Sciences has the administrative responsibility for the course and the study programme.