Geography studies the interaction between people and their environments, including the ways in which the people, the environments, and the interactions all vary from place to place over the earth. Because it is concerned with the character of people and their cultures on the one hand, and with the character of the earth's surface and its resources on the other, geography is both a social and a natural science. The UW–Madison geography program is organized into four major thematic areas: physical geography and earth system science, people-environmental studies, cartography and GIS, and human geography. There is intentional overlap among the thematic areas and many of our faculty work across subfields (e.g., teach courses in both human and people-environment).


For more information, contact the Graduate Program Director.

All Graduate School students must utilize the Graduate Student Portal in MyUW to add, change, or discontinue any doctoral minor. To apply to this minor, log in to MyUW, click on Graduate Student Portal, and then click on Add/Change Programs. Select the information for the doctoral minor for which you are applying.


All students pursuing a concentrated minor in Geography are required to connect with a faculty member with whom they can work to establish a reasonable course list to complete 9 credits in the department. That faculty member will, ultimately, be responsible for signing off on completion of the minor. Students interested in the Geography minor are encouraged to explore the department's faculty pages and contact faculty members with shared research interests.



Department Chair: John (Jack) Williams

Professors: Ian Baird, Erika Marin-Spiotta, Joseph Mason, Lisa Naughton, Kristopher Olds, Morgan Robertson, Robert Roth, Matthew Turner, John (Jack) Williams, Keith Woodward, A-Xing Zhu

Associate Professors: Song Gao, Asligül Göçmen, Qunying Huang, Jenna Loyd, Sarah Moore, Stephen Young

Assistant Professors: Christian Andresen, Ken Keefover-Ring, Bill Limpisathian, Almita Miranda, Jonathan Nelson