Listen to the audio below as Shonil Bhagwat, Head of the Geography Discipline introduces Geography Matters and highlights what materials it contains.
Shonil Bhagwat: Hi, I’m Shonil Bhagwat, Head of the Geography Discipline. Today I’m going to explain how the Geography Matters initiative is about creating an academic community of learners, and why things like Geography Matters are so important for distance learners.
I think one of the main drivers behind this initiative was to provide students taking geographical modules a sense of being part of an academic community. So, Geography Matters is for you, whether you are on the Open degree, or Combined Social Sciences degree, or Environmental Studies degree, or something else. It will give you a set of resources to help you see the relevance of the geographical ideas you will come across in your study.
Geography Matters means being able to drop in to a series of conversations that are about the research interests of colleagues within the geography discipline. So, for example, in some of the contributions you will find material on the current nature of borders and migration issues confronting Europe. You’ll find stuff on protest, and on Brexit. These might not seem directly relevant to the questions in your tutorials, but they should give you a sense of being part of the university community - which is about pushing around ideas, and showing how the concepts that you study in your module material can be used to understand current issues in the wider world.
So, whatever your interest in Geography, as Head of the Discipline I’d like to offer you a very warm welcome to Geography Matters. I hope that we can catch up on the forum if you have any questions about studying Geography at the OU.