Many people assume that Geography consists of memorizing place names on maps. Knowing where cities and natural features are located on the planet is but a tiny component of Geography. Instead, Geography is defined as the holistic study of the Earth and humans. The discipline seeks to understand the relationships between the physical world and human cultures. As such, a wide array of interrelated topics are explored as the development of individual human culture is highly affected by physical aspects such as climate, terrain, water resources, soils, and historical interactions with other cultures. Geography, therefore, explores many complex relationships between the physical and human worlds over time.
Geography is increasingly important as technology allows information sharing in an instantaneous fashion. Knowledge of other cultures and their historical development is critical towards eliminating conflict in addition to fostering future collaborations. Geographic Information Science is one means of bridging cultural gaps as this computer system is capable of analyzing huge volumes of physical and human data in a simultaneous manner.
The Anthropology, Geography and Earth Science (AGES) Department faculty engage in local and international research which often includes student interns and researchers.