Earth's crust – climate – colonization – water supply – transport – economic relations - these are just a few key words that describe the diverse aspects of geography. This discipline deals with the forms and processes of the Earth's surface in its spacial differentiation and human activities in its social and physical environment. It is typical for geographers to include natural science, social science, and economic perspectives and systematically link them.

Physical geography concentrates primarily on natural science research approaches and methods, such as in climatology, geomorphology, and geoecology.

Anthropogeography works from an economic-social science perspective, such as in commercial geography, transport geography, urban geography, and population geography.

Studies in Aachen consist of components from physical geography, anthropogeography, geographical methods, and regional geography. Starting in the fourth semester the curriculum offers students the opportunity to specialize within a geographic subdiscipline. Students select – based on their personal interest – one of the excursion destinations offered and two specialization modules starting in the fifth semester.

The course of study is also very application oriented. The concept behind the course of study is to offer an extraordinarily elaborate and comprehensive methodological training - from scientific data collection on site to evaluating the results.

The third particular characteristic of Aachen geography is the consistent link to other disciplines. The course catalogue, from which students choose a minor and elective module starting in the third semester, is unique and offers a broad range of specializations not available at other universities.

Minor and Elective Module

in both cases students can select from a unique variety of geography subjects or other disciplines: waste management and environmental engineering, business administration, biology, geosciences, geodetics, georisks, social sciences, computer science, mathematics, resources management, urban water management, urban planning, transport and spatial planning, and economics.

Programme Structure

Applied geography at RWTH means practical experience straight from the beginning! Field exercises supplement basic studies in the first semester. There is also an emphasis on methodological skills, such as climatological measurements at RWTH's own measuring stations, soil sample analyses, mapping, surveys, and statistic analyses. Many excursions offers a lively look into geographical peculiarities in the region and into geographical practice. Larger study excursions can take students to neighboring Euroean countries or to other continents.

Professional experience in a particular field of application is indispensable for geographers. A professional internships, completed during the lecture-free period, offers a deeper look into fields of work requiring geographic expertise.

Curriculum (simplified)

Semester Geographic Modules  

Physcal Geography

Economic Geography

Industrial Geography

Seminar and Site Internships, Geostatistics, Cartography


Physical Geography
Soil Geography, Biogeography, Basic Seminar, and Site Internship

Economic Geography
Service Geography, Agricultural Geography

Visualization, Geostatistics (SPSS)


Human Geography
Urban and Population Geography, Spatial Planning, Basic Seminar and Site Internship,

Project Module
Empirical Methods

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Minor and elective modules (from 3rd semester)


Project Module
Project Study

Regional Geography
Regional Seminar, Regional Internship

5 and 6 Specialization
Module 1 and 2 (by choice), Bachelor's thesis

Entry Requirement

  • Abitur or equivalent HZB
  • Proficiency in German

Career Prospects

Career fields are numerous and the occupational outlook is high due to the practical and quantitative orientation of the course of study. Graduates are active both domestically and abroad in the following fields:

  • Companies in private industry: site management, marketing, coordination activities, PR activities, controlling, consulting, editorial office activities, IT managment, media companies, environmental protection/consulting, telecommunications, city management, real estate, finance, traffic management, cross-border coordination, EU-oriented consulting responsibilities, tourism, and recreation
  • Public administration: spatial and urban planning, regional development and management, environmental management, nature conservation planning, neighborhood and city management, economic promotion, GIS supported planning and coordination activities, development assistance,international authorities
  • Self-employment: The vocational qualification offers good possibilities for under taking self-employment activities, e.g. in consulting offices or service enterprises as an external contractor for the professional fields listed above.


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