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Graduate program in geography helps students navigate many career options

Binghamton University's Department of Geography offers graduate study for students interested in a variety of potential fields. A quick survey of recent graduates reveals a diversity of occupations and careers, including analysis and planning positions for cities, businesses, and national organizations. Binghamton is part of the State University of New York (SUNY) system, often singled out for uniting quality and affordability.

The Master of Arts for the Department of Geography degree program requires a minimum of 40 credits, and typically can be completed in two years of full-time study. It culminates in a final project or thesis. An undergraduate specialization in geography is not a requisite for admission, so students from other backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Five tracks are available for students of the MA degree program:

1) General geography - the program provides disciplinary foundation along classical liberal arts lines that may lead to interdisciplinary work in scholarly areas such as conservation, environmental management, economic development and international studies.

2) Cartography and geographical information systems (GIS) - This track educates students as spatial analysts, with emphasis on cartography, remote sensing and geographic information systems. Among the essential components of the program are theory, research methods and advanced statistics.

3) Environmental and resource management - This track focuses on the integration of the environmental aspects of planning and resource use, incorporating both physical geography and institutional considerations of resource management. Among the essential components of this concentration are geographic techniques, environmental analysis, resource management theories and strategies, and application to local issues.

4) Urban planning and applied geography - The program encompasses urban analysis and planning, as well as retail geography, site selection and market analysis, with emphasis on the integration of the institutional, environmental, and urban-economic aspects of both public and private planning.

5) Race and ethnicity - This track emphasizes the importance of race and ethnicity in the socio-political-cultural environments of native and immigrant groups. Spatial settlement patterns, ethnic enclaves and dispersions, and changes in the patterns permit students to learn historic and contemporary dimensions.

(Binghamton University also offers an interdisciplinary graduate certificate program in watershed studies and management. The program combines courses in geography, geology, and biology to develop multidisciplinary knowledge of the scientific and anthropogenic factors affecting watersheds.)

The Department of Geography consists of 11 distinguished faculty members, and about 30 graduate students. Research and applied knowledge are held as cornerstones of the curriculum, preparing students for higher academia or for success in the field.

Work with experienced faculty members whose interests span the discipline

To provide a cross-section of the work by Binghamton faculty members, consider professors John W. Frazier, Florence Margai, and Eugene Tettey-Fio.

Professor John W. Frazier uses the urban populations around Binghamton for his teaching of applied geography. The city has commissioned him to chart important data, including the impact of students on the local area. He also studies crime distribution statistics, aging futures, and race/immigration issues in many areas.

Professor Florence Margai has authored or co-authored 3 books and over 30 articles. Her research pertains to mapping environmental hazards and health outcomes among vulnerable communities, including women, the elderly, and children. Previously she has worked with groups in the US and Africa to assist efforts toward malaria intervention and ongoing threats such as pediatric lead poisoning.

Eugene Tettey-Fio is assistant professor and director of graduate studies for the department. His specializations include race and ethnicity, retail geography, site analysis, and GIS theory. He and other Binghamton professors have collaborated on several projects concerning Latino populations in the United States, and various issues of class and economic status in these communities.

Practical applications at home and abroad

Geography graduates of Binghamton University have found jobs locally, nationally, and internationally. They perform valuable work in transportation, census offices, city planning, military cartography, business research, environmental planning, and more. Small class sizes ensure that students are able to get advice from professors, and plan a curriculum that suits their intended goals. The Fleischman Center for Career and Professional Development and the Department of Geography both compile listings of opportunities for students to apply their knowledge, in order to help with placements after graduation.

Degrees & Awards

Degrees Offered

Degree Concentration Sub-concentration
Master of Arts (MA)

Degrees Awarded

Degree Number Awarded
Master's Degrees 22

Earning Your Degree

Part-time study available? Yes
Evening/weekend programs available? No
Distance learning programs available? No
Terminal master's degree available? No

Degree Requirements

Degree Requirement
Master's Degrees Entrance Exam GRE General Test
1 Foreign Language
Thesis Required for some


Acceptance Rate



Application Fee - Domestic
applications accepted?

Application Deadlines

Type Domestic International Priority date
Fall deadline May 15th May 15th Yes
Spring deadline January 15th January 15th Yes

Entrance Requirements

Exam Details
Master's Degree Exam GRE General Test

International Students

Exam Details
TOEFL: Required TOEFL Paper score: 550
TOEFL IBT score: 80

Tuition & Fees

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Financial Support

Financial award applicants must submit: FAFSA
Application deadlines for financial awards January 15
Types of financial support available Teaching Assistantships
Health Care Benefits
Institutionally-sponsored Loans
Scholarship and/or loans
Graduate Assistantships

Student Body

Total Graduate Students
International Breakout (representing other countries)


Hispanic/Latino 13.33%
Black or African American 16.67%
White or Caucasian 30%
American Indian or Alaska Native Not Reported
Asian Not Reported
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander Not Reported
Two or more races Not Reported
Unknown Not Reported


Male (50%)
Female (50%)


Total faculty
Full-time - 12
Part-time - 0
Male (9)
Female (3)

Location & Contact

Address 4400 Vestal Parkway East
Binghamton, NY  13902-6000
United States
Contact John Frazier
Director of Graduate Studies
Phone: 607-777-6179

Binghamton University, State University of New York