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Accelerated BA/BS and MA Geography


Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in all courses taken at ASU; minimum of 3.5 GPA in all geography and GIS courses.

Minimum 75 credit hours toward BA or BS degree at the time of application.

Completed 90 credits of undergraduate study before enrolling in any accelerated course that will be included in BA or BS program of study.

Completed GPH 111 Introduction to Physical Geography, GPH 112 Introduction to Physical Geography lab, and GIS 205 Geographic Information Science I.

*Please meet with your advisor to check eligibility

Fast facts

accelerated programs save time since a bachelor’s and master’s degree can be obtained in as little as 5 years*

accelerated programs save students money since students are saving time by sharing credits between the undergraduate and graduate program (less time = less tuition paid)

Students with the New American University Dean’s, Provost’s, President’s or National Scholar scholarship who complete their undergraduate program in less than 8 semesters can apply any remaining awards to an ASU on-ground graduate program**

Placement data of Master’s program graduates:

Department of Labor Salary Range for students with a Master’s degree vs. Undergraduate degree Waived application requirements for accelerated applicants:

*Completion time may vary by program, check with your school/dept’s advisors
**Always consult with financial aid to ensure eligibility

Timeline – From Application to Student:

Freshman – First Semester of Junior Year:

  • Direct questions to your undergraduate academic advisors.

Junior Year (January – February):

  • Graduate advisor checks your eligibility and will send you information and instructions for the Preliminary Application.
  • Meet with undergraduate advisor to plan coursework for senior year.

Junior Year (January 1- March 15):

  • Submit Preliminary Application by March 15
  • Associate Director of Graduate Studies (immersion) or the Program Director (online) reviews applications; if the Preliminary Application is approved, a Graduate Programs Coordinator will contact you with the next steps.

Senior Year (June 1/Summer before graduate year):

  • Formally apply for Graduate Admission for the upcoming Fall semester (your graduate year).
  • Graduate Coordinator reviews processes admission decision; Graduate Coordinator will contact you with next steps.
  • Enroll in required graduate level courses for Fall of senior year.  

Shared classes

Senior Year Graduate Year
  • GCU 528: Geographic Problems and Context* (3) (Online StudentsOR
  • GCU 529: Contemporary Geographic Thought* (3) (Tempe Students)
  • GCU 596 Geographic Research Methods** (3) (Online StudentsOR
  • Approved Methods or Statistics Course*** (3) OR
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3)
  • GCU/GPH 591: Seminar: Geography Colloquium (1)
  • GCU/GPH 692: Research (4)
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3)
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3)
  • GCU 585: Geographic Research Design and Proposal Writing** (3) (Tempe StudentsOR
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3)
  • Approved Methods or Statistics Course*** (3) OR
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3)
  • GCU/GPH 591: Seminar: Geography Colloquium (1)
  • Approved Graduate Elective (3) (Capstone Students)
  • GPH 597: Geography Capstone (3)
  • GCU/GPH 599: Thesis (6)

* Students are required to take either GCU 528 or GCU 529.

** Students are required to take either GCU 585 or GCU 596.

*** Students are required to take three (3) credits of an approved methods or statistics course. It is recommended that this be completed at some point during the first year.

Core and Other Requirements

The listed classes are required and cannot be waived or substituted.

MA Geography students are required to take three (3) credits of an approved methods and/or statistics course. A list of methods and statistics courses currently approved can be found on the MA Geography Approved Methods & Statistics Courses list. Courses not on the list can be petition for and approved by SGSUP’s AD of Graduate Studies. Submit the Petition for Transfer or Interdisciplinary Elective Courses form to request approval.

GCU 496 Geographic Research Methods cannot be used as a substitute for the required GCU 596 Geographic Research Methods course.


Any graduate level GCU, GIS, GPH, or PUP course may be taken as elective, including Research and Reading & Conference credits. Interdisciplinary courses may be taken, but must be approved by the department. Submit the Petition for Transfer or Interdisciplinary Elective Courses form to request approval. A maximum of six (6.0) credits of 400-level coursework may be included on the plan of study.

Culminating Experience

The Geography Capstone course (GPH 597) is the default culminating experience for MA Geography students. This course builds upon program completed work that allows for the student to apply learned concepts to real-world geographic problems while building upon their professional tools to further their careers. Students will complete a professional portfolio of work that includes a written report and an oral presentation. Students must earn a grade of B or better to be used toward the MA degree.

Students preferring to pursue an individualized culminating experience project must be aware that:

  • Individualized culminating experiences require significant effort, initiative, and discipline by the student.
  • Students are responsible for identifying a research question.
  • Faculty advisors will supervise the thesis; they will not assign a research topic/question.

Students are recommended to take the thesis credits in the final year of the program. Students should consult with faculty advisor prior to enrolling in thesis. The faculty advisor should be identified by the end of the fall of the senior year.



Beverly Davis
480-965-7533 (main office)


Christopher Clanahan
480-965-7533 (main office)