Geography - Ph.D.

College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Geography
413 McGilvrey Hall
Kent Campus


The Ph.D. degree in Geography provides specialized training and inquiry into contemporary problems in geography.


  • Kent Campus

Admission Requirements

  • Official transcript(s)
  • Submission of GRE scores
  • Résumé
  • Goal statement
  • Three letters of recommendation

English Language Proficiency Requirements for International Students: All international students must provide proof of English language proficiency (unless they meet specific exceptions) by earning a minimum 550 TOEFL score (79 on the Internet-based version), minimum 77 MELAB score, minimum 6.5 IELTS score or minimum 58 PTE Academic score. For more information on international admission, visit the Office of Global Education’s admission websiteEffective spring 2018.

For more information about graduate admissions, please visit the Graduate Studies website.

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

  1. Engage in independent research projects.
  2. Acquire experiences in formulating research problems, reviewing relevant literature, designing research methodology, analyzing research data and formulating results from academic research.

Program Requirements

Major Requirements


Major Requirements
Geography Coursework 112
Cognate Discipliine 26
Additional Requirements12
Minimum Total Credit Hours:60

Geography coursework must be graded and may include graded independent study. Students are not permitted to count research (e.g., GEOG 80998) towards this requirement. New students are strongly encouraged to take GEOG 69701 and GEOG 70800 courses within the first year of their enrollment, if they have not already taken similar courses at the masters level.


The cognate field must be in a department other than geography. Generally, cognate study is taken with the cognate member of the student's advisory committee.


Candidacy examinations are taken after the dissertation proposal is approved by the committee. This should be completed by the end of the second year of doctoral study. Each doctoral candidate, upon admission to candidacy, must register for GEOG 80199 for a total of 30 credit hours. It is expected that a doctoral candidate will continuously register for Dissertation I, and thereafter GEOG 80299, each semester, including one term each summer, until all requirements for the degree have been met.

graduation requirements

Of the 30 credit hours of coursework required for the degree, students must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours that are letter graded at the master's degree–level.