Biogeography is a centuries-old discipline with roots in the work of early natural historians (like Charles Darwin) who travelled the globe documenting new species. Biogeographers seek to describe and explain the distribution of the world’s species across all taxonomic groups, from the largest continents to the smallest islands, from mountain tops to the deep ocean, from the poles to the tropics, and from the start of life on Earth to the modern day. As such, biogeography intersects with the disciplines of Ecology and Evolution. Biogeographers are central to understanding and forecasting changes to species distributions caused by environmental changes, both natural and anthropogenic, such as widespread vegetation clearance and shifts in climate.
Subjects in the Biogeography pathway explore the historical evolution of landscapes around the world; patterns in speciation and extinction among different taxonomic groups, continents and epochs; effects of people, including indigenous peoples, on species distributions; modern theories of species diversity; applications of biogeographical and ecological science to solve and manage environmental problems in a range of different types of ecosystems.
Skills associated with this pathway
Graduates of the Biogeography pathway will gain skills in scientific reasoning, rigorous methods for collecting data in the field from a diverse range of ecosystems, processing samples in the laboratory, analysis of data using statistics, and in critical thinking and writing.
Recommended course structure
Pathways are designed to help students identify geography subjects focused on a specific theme. Pathways are not formal degrees or qualifications, rather they are recommended groupings of similar or related subjects that students may choose to enrol in if they wish to develop an expertise in a specific topic of interest, or to build a particular skill base for their preferred career path.
- First year
GEOG20002: Landscapes and Environmental Change
GEOG20001: Society and environments
GEOG20003: Environmental Politics & Management
GEOG20015: Environmental Change & the Human Journey
GEOG20017: Spatial Analysis in Geography
GEOG30025: Biogeography and ecology of fire
GEOG30022: Riverine Landscapes: Hydrology & Ecology
GEOG30027: Local Sites, Global Connections
GEOG30023: Global climate change in context
GEOG30001: Geomorphology: Catchment to Coast
GEOG30024: Africa: Environment, Development, People
GEOG30030: Spatial Modelling for Nature and People
Further study or research
Where could this pathway take you? Here is a selection of possible careers.
- Commercial/residential surveyor
- Environmental consultant
- Geographical information systems officer
- Planning and development surveyor
- Town planner
- Nature conservation officer
- Transport planner
Find out more
Have questions? Want to know more about pathways in geography? Get in touch.