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Physical Geography: An Introduction to the Global Environment

This course gives you a general introduction to the field of Physical Geography and Ecosystems Sciences.

Course contents

By taking this course, you will increase your understanding and general knowledge about processes in the lithosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere and the atmosphere. You'll learn about minerals and rock types that build our planet. You will learn about landforms geomorphology and how these are shaped by:

  1. processes inside the crust of the earth  endogenic processes  and
  2. processes acting on the surface  exogenic processes  and how these affect and are affected by biological processes and human interaction

Moreover, you will study basic meteorology, climatology and climate change, hydrology and oceanography. This will enable a holistic understanding for mechanisms acting on what is generally referred to as Global Change.

Ecosystems science

Ecosystems Science will teach you about the biomes of the world. A biome is a contiguous area with similar climatic conditions. You will learn about the relationship between biomes and specific processes active in different biomes, such as soil forming processes.

Scientific methods

You will also be introduced to methods used to gather data and information about our environment, such as remote sensing (the use of aerial and satellite photographs) to make maps and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to analyse environmental issues. You will be acquainted with different models and analytical tools for describing processes and phenomena in the world around us.

Many of our students take this course as the introduction to the BSc programme in Physical Geography and Ecosystems Analysis, a program which qualifies you to apply for no less than five different Master's programmes at our department. However, this course is also an excellent complement for students having other fields as their main subject, for example Biology, Ecology and Environmental Science. It can also be taken outside of any programme.


Teaching on the course consists of lectures, practical exercises, field trips, seminars, groups and individual project work. The exam is a traditional written exam.

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Course facts

Level: Basic
Credits: 15 ECTS
Period: Autumn, period 1
Language of instruction: English
Prerequisites: General admission requirements, and either: Mathematics B, Phsyics A, Chemistry A, Biology A or Science B; or; the equivalent of 30 ECTS of any subject.

Course curriculum
PDF icon Course evaluation, fall term 2017

Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science
Lund University
Sölvegatan 12
S-223 62 Lund

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