Geography, Planning and Human-Environment Relations


On completion of this module students should have an understanding and appreciation of the nature and practice of the discipline of geography (including its histories, key concepts/philosophies and techniques of analysis), the role of local/regional authorities and the evolution/workings of the Irish spatial planning system (including forward planning and development control), and the evolution of international geographical thought on human-environment relations (from the nineteenth century to the present).

Learning Outcomes

  1. (a) Use a range of thinking skills that will enable them to become assertive and competent geographers with an enthusiasm for investigation and discovery.

    (b) Comprehend the nature, history and philosophy of the discipline of geography (including concepts such as environmental determinism, regionalism, classical cultural geography, quantification, and humanism).

    (c) Display a detailed knowledge and understanding of the intellectual links between the fields of heritage studies, geography, planning and environmental studies.

    (d) Use and understand the importance of sampling and fieldwork techniques in the practice of geography.

    (e) Acquire well-developed report writing and interpretative skills.

    (f) Comprehend how the environment in Ireland is managed and governed by local/regional authorities and other agencies (e.g. the Environmental Protection Agency, the Heritage Council).

    (g) Understand the history of planning and understand the working of the twin concepts of development control and forward planning (especially how operational decisions may impinge upon the shape and structure of both society and the landscape within Irish urban and rural areas).

    (h) Show an appreciation of how the writings of leading geographical thinkers on human-environment relations (e.g. Peter Kropotkin, Carl Sauer) can be used to illuminate our understanding of interactions between society and the environment throughout the course of history.

    (g) Appreciate the need for effective environmental management strategies and be conscious of the consequences of human actions in changing the face of the earth over space and through time (e.g. the impact of climate change/global warming on humankind and the questions that it poses for heritage management).

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